Windows Home Server: Will It Deliver?

Windows Home Server touts home automation, but specifics are hard to find.

HP MediaSmart Server with Windows Home Server

Windows Home Server will be integrated into HP’s MediaSmart Server.

I’ve been to the site, and I’ve checked out the blog. I keep reading the words “home automation” in conjunction with details on its many promised features, but I’m still not seeing how Windows Home Server (WHS) is going to have an impact on the automated home. I respect what it’s trying to do for home media – make it available via a remotely-accessed, Internet-connected computer, zing music and files around the home to various media devices, back-up files, etc. — but I’m not seeing the automated home connection, yet. If it just becomes a base to any of the other PC-based home-control applications that are out there (HAL, HomeZIX, and so on), well, I’ll feel like I might as well stick with what I’ve got, and others probably will, too.

The closest any of the Windows Home Server Software and Hardware Partners comes to the world of home automation is Embedded Automation Inc., whose “mControl” will integrate with WHS to “help consumers manage home lighting, security systems, security cameras, climate control, and audio and visual components.” Okay, a good start, but it still doesn’t seem to be replacing many of today’s existing software solutions. Other products are promised, but not many are yet to be announced or available.

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Another one of those time will tell scenarios? Sure looks it to me …

Ben HardyBetween watching re-runs of the “The Jetsons” and convincing his Insteon and Z-Wave controls to get along, Ben Hardy is immersed in the world of home automation, home control, and home networking.


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