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This review is from: Microsoft Windows Home Server 2011 64-bit - OEM
Pros: "All in one" solution for home computer backup, localized storage, with a nice web interface, and DLNA support. Unfortunately there's little else out there that "does it all", and this barely does.
Fairly easy to set up if you stick with the WHS 2011 restrictions (2TB drive size for backups, 120GB min main drive, sticky support for Win 8/8.1, etc).
Works well with weaker/older hardware. Set up mine with i3-3xxx series CPU and 8GB DDR3 1600 RAM. Streams video and audio without issue. Also is used as a Minecraft and Teamspeak server and handles it all just fine. Set one up for my sister with Core 2 Quad and 4GB DDR2 800 and works great as just a file server, but I wouldn't test it with serving much more than that.
Add-ins available for additional supported features, but by third parties.
Cons: Eliminated WHS v1 "Drive Extender"
MS ditches support for this Server OS within a year after it's released.
A bit problematic with UEFI and Win 8.1 but there are fixes/workarounds
Limited to 8GB system RAM
Maximum drive/partition size limited to 2TB for server backups, although backup drive can be at least 4TB (max size I've used so far).
DLNA support, but no configuration, it doesn't alphabetize the titles, it leaves it up to the DLNA device (TV, Blu-ray, etc) and many only list by date.
Number of add-ins are sparse, at least anything worth a darn.
Other Thoughts: Use GPT partitions to make your life easier with large drives. If you use Windows 8.0 and have issues look for the WHS 2011 UEFI hotfix.
With Windows 8.1 disable backup of the Windows created "recovery" partition otherwise backup will fail.
It's a good home server solution, just could have been so much better.
Pros: I was quite excited when I bought this product. Excellent for extra desktop space when you need it. The screen is plenty bright, and manages basic desktop stuff just fine.
Cons: Where it falters is with interference with other drivers, nVidia Optimus it seems especially. Even with the screen removed, if I go to play a game, many games will error out. I was getting frustrated because I didn't pinpoint it to the LCD at first, then when I uninstalled the AOC LCD drivers everything worked fine again. If your laptop is used solely for productivity, it should likely be fine. But if your machine is used for productivity and gaming then forget it. I did email the manufacturer. We will see if they can help.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: This is really a "first look" review as I've only had it a few days. Will follow up with more detail later. I bought 2, one for each of my kids.
I'm a fairly avid fan of AMD especially their mobile CPU's with their awesome integrated graphics performance. For under $400 this machine is an awesome bang for the buck if you're looking for something that can handle normal chores and some gaming. I bought two for my boys, and it suits them just fine so far for Minecraft, some web games, and even Sim City games. Windows 7 that comes with it is a plus in my book too since Win 8 is such a debacle at the moment.
Simple to access and replace RAM, HDD, and wi-fi card if desired. And nothing indicating it will void warranty.
Cons: A few odd issues:
- USB 3.0 is a bit flaky. I believe it's driver support. A couple USB 3.0 drives I have would frequently just disconnect on their own, to the point they were unusable. USB 2.0 drives and a newer WD Passport USB 3.0 drive seem to work fine so far though.
- Comes with a single 4GB RAM chip. The GPU in this thing needs dual channel RAM, meaning two sticks of equal size RAM. They would have been better off offering 2x2GB than a single 4GB stick, although RAM is cheap so throwing in another 4GB isn't a big deal, and I have plenty extra, otherwise it's an added expense
- Bloatware. Not horrible, but still atrocious
- 5400RPM HDD. 500GB. 7mm form factor not 9.5mm so 500GB is largest HDD you can get currently in 7mm form factor. Although I plan on swapping out for SSD anyhow.
- Touchpad tracks fine, but it's just cheap. Deflects easily and buttons don't depress very well. Probably be able to mod it by placing a hard piece of plastic underneath sometime when I feel like tearing the machine apart
Other Thoughts: A few things not positive or negative in my opinion:
- poor quality screen, but I guess expected. at least it's bright and no dead pixels
- battery, small 50WHr for the size laptop, probably get 3 hours, but I guess that's ok
- keyboard is decent, just the entire surface bounces with little pressure. But for kids ok.
- weight is a bit high for just having to cool a single 35W CPU, but it could be worse.
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