Hewlett Packard now has its hands on the Windows Home Server (WHS) update for which it decided to delay its MediaSmart Home Server.
HardwareGeeks.com got Microsoft to confirm that HP now has the WHS patch. The Windows enthusiast site also is reporting that Microsoft is planning an announcement on Tuesday, September 25, about the availability of the WHS update.
At the end of August, Microsoft officials acknowledged they were working on a post-RTM (release-to-manufacturing) WHS update would make the platform more appealing to developers. Microsoft said at that time that it planned to make the update available in a couple of weeks.
HP admitted in late August that it planned to delay its initial WHS shipments in order to incorporate the Microsoft WHS update -- leading some to question exactly what was in the update and why it seemed to impact HP more than other WHS vendors. HP's new official due date for its MediaSmart Server: Holiday season 2007. (Originally, HP was expected to be first out of the WHS gate, shipping MediaSmart Server on September 15.)
Philip Churchill, a Microsoft beta tester and principal with the independent Microsoft Windows Home Server Web site, posted earlier this month a chart listing tentative WHS due dates from various Microsoft partners. Churchill's chart came from a recent Microsoft presentation at the recent IFA consumer-electronics show in Berlin.
Based on this new data, the only WHS vendor which seems to have pushed back substantially its WHS release as a result of Microsoft's WHS update is HP. (Note: It's not clear whether these dates are specific to Europe or not.) The WHS availabilty list:
Medion: October 2007 MaxData: October 2007 Chili Green: October 2007 Fujitsu Siemens: November 2007 Lacie: November 2007 Leo: November 2007 HP: January 2008
I asked HP about the alleged January 2008 date. A spokesperson sent the following statement:
"We have said that the (MediaSmart) server will be available through HP's U.S. channel partners in time for the holidays. It's generally true that products are available first in the U.S. and then in the rest of the World."
I wonder whether the other WHS vendors decided against including the Microsoft WHS update in their initial releases and, instead, expect customers to download WHS patches themselves. Perhaps Microsoft will share more specifics next week....