Home Server History

Mary Jo Foley, queen of the Microsoft watchers, posted two stories on ZDNET today about the development history of Home Server, based on a conversation she had with Charlie Kindel.   Charlie is the general manager overseeing Home Server and has been a guiding light for the product inside the company. 

As Mary Jo recounts, he had been researching and making the case for a home server product all the way back to 1999, anticipating the widespread need we see now for simple backup/restore, storage that grows with your needs and access to your digital "stuff" from anywhere.  His journey went through four general phases...hence the project name "Quattro" (Italian for 4) and eventual codename "Q."     


Comments (4)
  1. Anonymous says:

    Joel Sider points us to a post by Mary Jo Foley talking about the history of Windows Home Server as well

  2. Anonymous says:

    Home server is an exciting consumer based product that is intended to be a solution for homes with multiple connected PCs to offer file sharing, automated backups, and remote access. Keith and Woody sit down with Jonas Svensson and Brendan Grant of the

  3. Anonymous says:

    Last December, I posted a story to my personal blog titled " Windows Home Server is actually useful!

  4. Anonymous says:


    I have some questions in connection with this part of the article:

    "Next, while a member of the Microsoft hardware group, Kindel again pitched an idea for a home server that would be the hub of a home-automation system. It would be an always-on device that would provide centralized management of computing and other kinds of devices. No go.

    Next, the "PVR (personal video recorder) became interesting around this time," Kindel recalled, helping give birth to the Media Center Extender concept. As a member of the Windows Media Center team, Kindel again contemplated what a Home Server might look like and how it would differ from Media Center."

    I use Media Center for a long time and I like the concept of Windows Home Server. But in the future I don’t  want to have two dedicated machines! (one more PC to buy and additional electric consumption unjustified)

    For example for the moment with your concept, wee need one PC Media center always "power on" to have functions PVR and second PC Home Server for the file sharing and the backup!

    And if I use XBOX 360 with Extender Mod? I must do this?

    PC Home Server (file sharing) –> Vista Media Center –> XBOX 360 extender!  (I don’t like simple share like Windows Media Connect)

    It is not well!!! Why not add the part (ehome) Media Center on Windows Server Home? It would be better!!

    Only one PC always-on would make it possible to make the  files sharing, backup, server of media to connect the extenders like XBOX 360. It’s better!

    I would like to be able to install a solution house automation on Windows Home Server such have Lifware 2.0  (what would justify to let power-on PC dedicated with Home Server)

    It is possible in the future that Home Server is to amalgamate with Media Center ?

    Personally in this only condition I would buy a machine Windows Home Server! Many people on the forums of MCEFrance.com think similar! (MCEFrance is a community like thegreenbutton.com but exclusively for French-speaking)

    I hope that you will answer my questions at the time of a forthcoming subject about the blog!

    Best regards,


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