In addition to today's release candidate build of Small Business Server "Aurora"--see my overview--Microsoft also issued a second preview build of "Vail," the next version of Windows Home Server. I won't be able to thoroughly test this new Vail build until I get home from Germany next week, but here's the word from Jonas Svensson on the Windows Home Server blog:

Since releasing our first Vail beta we have received lots of great suggestions for "Vail" and quite a few interesting bugs. Thanks to all of you who are beta testing! We love having you part of our extended team and appreciate your help.

This new build has plenty of enhancements and improvements over the original build and can be downloaded from the downloads section of our Connect site. If you are new to the beta, please go to http://connect.microsoft.com/windowshomeserver to sign up for the download. You can provide feedback about the new build through our Connect site and even log ideas or feature suggestions for future versions of Windows Home Server.

The Windows Server code name “Vail” Preview SDK is also available for download. The SDK provides the following content:

  • API references that help you understand all the API elements that can be used to extend and manage Windows Server Code Name “Vail”
  • How-to documents that help you to understand how to build add-ins
  • Templates that help you build add-ins with Visual Studio 2008
  • Samples that provide examples of complete add-ins

We also have some other resources available to learn more about Windows Home Server and our upcoming product:

Thanks for the continued support and we'll be sure to keep you posted as newer builds become available.