Microsoft: Home Server Bug Could Be Bigger Than We Thought


Microsoft in December warned that using certain applications to save files to Home Server could cause files to become corrupted, and said it was investigating a fix. These applications included: Vista Photo Gallery, Windows Live Photo Gallery, Office OneNote 2007, Office OneNote 2003, Office Outlook 2007, Money 2007, and SyncToy 2.0 Beta.

Based on Windows Server 2003, Windows Home Server lets users connect multiple PCs in the same household and allows them to store, manage, back up, and remotely access their digital content.

In an updated Knowledge Base article posted Thursday, Microsoft said it has reproduced the bug in these apps. However, the vendor listed 14 additional applications with which customers have reported having the same issue, including Excel and Windows Media Player 11, as well as Photoshop Elements, Adobe Lightroom, Zune Software, Apple iTunes, Mozilla Thunderbird, and WinAmp.

In the article, Microsoft said it hasn't yet reproduced the bug in these apps, and notes that the issue only affects Windows Home Server systems with more than one hard drive added to the server. However, until an update is available, Microsoft is recommending that users refrain from using these applications to save or to edit program-specific files that are stored on a Windows Home Server-based system.

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Dave Sobel, CEO of Evolve Technologies, a Fairfax, Va.-based solution provider, says his biggest concern is that the glitch could interfere with the primary purpose of Windows Home Server -- i.e. backing up data.

"If it can't be trusted for its primary purpose, it loses a lot of appeal," said Sobel. "I hope Microsoft recognized the critical importance not only of this bug, but also addressing the root cause and damage to the product's credibility."

Posters on the Windows Home Server forums on have been voicing their concerns that the Home Server data corruption glitch could encompass an even wider range of applications.

"Microsoft continues to recommend - recklessly, I think - that users avoid editing and saving on the WHS using those specific applications. Since they keep expanding the list, following that recommendation would be very foolish," wrote a poster who uses the handle 'Tangible'.