Windows Home Server is easily one of the best products to ever come out of Redmond. It brings most of the functionality of a full-fledged server without any of the hassle. OEMs like HP and Acer quickly jumped on the platform a few years ago and outed fantastic products lines centered around WHS that allowed nearly any consumer to set up a comprehensive back-up solution, media vault, and network-attached storage unit — all on a small form factor PC that sucks less energy than a traditional computer. It’s seemingly a winning product for Microsoft, hardware makers and even us consumers. But that perception is apparently wrong. Microsoft is now prepping the next version of WHS named Vail, which reportable does not include features and functions that previously defined the platform.
Of course these moves have caused the WHS server fan base to erupt in an Internet ragestorm fueled by confusion and abandonment issues. The thought that Windows Home Server is now dead in the water was further defined today when Microsoft confirmed reports that HP, which shipped the first widely adapted WHS, will not produce servers based on the next-gen OS. Dead, canceled, or some other name with synonymous lifeless might not be the correct description as Microsoft is clearly working on the platform, but the next version of WHS is seemingly different enough in its core philosophy and target demographic to warrant a name change or even death decree.