Microsoft has produced the Home Server called Windows Home Server. It is similar to the Windows Small Business Server version that is touted for small businesses, but other than that really doesn’t pose too many differences or unique features about it.
Microsoft drives one characteristic home with this product – pun intended. Microsoft Home Server does not need to use RAID, but instead used RAID-like drive pooling with redundancy so speed and data safeguarding are there. What does this mean? Typical servers have expensive RAID setups that means that 3-5 drives can be set up to all carry bits of data so any read/write access or running programs are faster. Further, at least 1 drive is used to ensure that the rest of the drives will carry on operations if 1 drive fails. So, the home server will do the same thing without the expensive overhead of the RAID card, software, and SCSI hard drives. You may run regular IDE or SATA drives with this setup.
The Home Server, similar to any other server manages backups, supports disk images for easy restores, and monitors PC health. You may network PCs, use client-base software for PC interaction, and get all of this for a reasonable cost. Ultimately, this home server is for computer users who have a little knowledge of networking and have the patience to read a lot of manuals…if you’d like to do it yourselves. The home server is a good way to what Microsoft says easily set up a server for home to share pictures and make backups. That being said, we still feel going with a small business server or a simple external hard drive is the better solution due to more features, options, and flexibility.