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Functionality Extensions

Windows Home Server has an integrated manager of add-in modules that help implement new features in the server. We've mentioned ASUS' utilities above, for example. You can also check out this page for a list of all available utilities: UPS, backup, defragmentation, antivirus protection, file download, power management and many other kinds of tools. Such a module can integrate its setup page into the console interface so that you could use the same interface to access all system functions.

 

We can particularly mention the Download Manager tool that can download files via HTTP and FTP (also from file-sharing services) and FTP Manager that can be used to easily set up the integrated IIS in FTP server mode.

If you are not satisfied with the console and add-ons, you can use a remote desktop connection and do nearly anything you want with the system. You may only be limited by your desire to keep the original software up and running (we mean the management console, the backup system, etc) rather than by some features of the server.

The last method you can resort to, if you haven't preferred to buy a nettop in the first place, is to install some other OS. You can do this easily using a USB flash drive with an OS distribution. The hardware is perfectly standard and most modern OSes won't have any problems with it.

Performance

We used our traditional tools for benchmarking: Intel NASPT 1.7.0 and Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AAL disks. The single deviation from our standard method was that we didn’t turn on Jumbo Frames on the server. We couldn’t find this setting in the management console and tried to enable it via a remote desktop connection, which itself is not very easy for an ordinary user. Besides, turning Jumbo Frames on in this way provoked a tremendous performance hit at writing, so this problem needs further checking out.

We had two test modes: an ordinary network folder and a network folder for which the option of copying data to the second disk was turned on.

 
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