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Monday, 12 January 2009 05:26

HP Windows box judged Best of Show at Macworld Expo

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Who would have thought it? A product based on a Windows operating system picked up the Best of Show award at Macworld Expo last week.

The product in question was HP's MediaSmart Server, a product designed to centralise media file storage on a home network, provide remote access to those files, and to back up files stored on PCs and Macs.

Features of particular interest to Mac users include the option of using the MediaSmart Server as a Time Machine backup destination, and its ability to act as an iTunes server.

One drawback is that the initial configuration of the MediaSmart requires the use of Windows.

The HP MediaSmart Server is sold with either one (ex485, $US599) or two (ex487, $US749) 750G hard drives. A maximum of four internal 3.5 in SATA drives can be installed, and additional storage can be connected via the four USB and one eSATA ports.

Files stored on the MediaSmart Server can be protected though a Windows Home Server feature called folder duplication, which keeps two copies of every file in duplicated folders on separate drives. If one drive fails, the other copy is still available.

Unlike RAID technology, this doesn't require that every file is duplicated, and it works with mismatched drives.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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