On Friday, Sr. Product Manager Joel Sider invited Channel 10 over to be flies on the wall for their RTM button-pushing ceremony.
WHS manufacturers will start with HP, Gateway, LaCie, Iomega, and Fujitsu-Siemens. All kinds of Home Servers are going to be available, I’ve seen towers, boxes, and reference designs of a puck version. I built my own (and so can you) but the benefit of a manufactured model is the adherence to Microsoft guidelines in things like noise reduction and hardware features like easily drive access.
Applications are emerging; Embedded Automation’s mControl software will integrate with WHS to control home lighting, cameras, climate control, and AV systems. Iron Mountain will offer data protection for your data protection (good in case of fire, I assume), Lagotek’s Home Intelligence Platform will support Home Server. PacketVideo will enable streaming from Home Server to a variety of devices. Riptopia will suck your entire CD collection to your Home Server, and SageTV media server is onboard with SageTV Placeshifter. I installed Orb this weekend on the Home Server RTM and now I'm able to stream all my videos, music, and pictures to my 3G Smartphone.