A quick look back at Microsoft’s Windows Home Server and its official children’s book

In just a few days, Microsoft will end support for Windows Server 2012 after over 11 years on the market. Ironically, the launch of the server OS in 2012 was also the official end for another server product from Microsoft that had first gone on sale on October 10, 2007, nearly 16 years ago. It was called Windows Home Server, and it was an effort to expand Microsoft’s home operating systems beyond just PCs.

Windows Home Server was, in my opinion, a genius product that didn’t have an audience. The idea of a very simple to set up and effectively forgettable PC with lots of storage somewhere down in the basement or the attic where the entire family backs up their important data and stores less important data is simply an excellent idea – but an idea that nobody wants. It’s boring, people just opt for cloud storage instead, and it’s yet another bag of money you have to spend on technology.

I still like the idea, though. Even in the era of cloud storage, I would love to be able to buy a relatively simple PC with tons of storage that I can store my files and back-ups on. However, you can take it a step further – if friends and family you trust also have such a device, you can build a private network of “cloud” storage devices to duplicate each other’s back-ups for improved resilience and on-the-go accessibility. Everything would have to be encrypted, of course, but in such a way people could build their own little private clouds – away from the prying eyes of Apple, Google, Microsoft, and others.

Now, all the technologies exist to build something like that, but it would require quite a bit of technical knowledge and active maintenance, and is anything but easy. If plug-and-play boxes existed that did this – I wouldn’t hesitate to buy a few and set them up at our home and those of my parents and parents-in-law.


  1. 2023-10-07 7:18 pm
    • 2023-10-07 8:06 pm
      • 2023-10-07 8:17 pm
        • 2023-10-07 8:56 pm
          • 2023-10-07 10:53 pm
    • 2023-10-07 8:12 pm
      • 2023-10-07 9:01 pm
        • 2023-10-07 10:00 pm
  2. 2023-10-08 12:24 pm
  3. 2023-10-08 12:27 pm