Reinstalling Windows Home Server

After replacing a failed hard disk yesterday, I needed to rebuild my Windows Home Server (WHS).  The process was surprisingly straightforward – having suffered a total disk failure, I had no data to worry about (in any case, the server only contained client PC backups), so all I needed to do was re-install the software (although I’m not sure what the effect of product activation would have been as I hadn’t activated WHS when the disk crashed) and re-establish my configuration changes (firewall changes, language settings, date and time, etc.).  One item I had expected some trouble with was the remote access address but because this is linked to my Windows Live identity, it was re-established automatically and so the only concern was reconnecting my client computers.  I had to recreate the user accounts manually but to reconnect an existing client computer, it was as simple as running %programfiles%\Windows Home Server\discovery.exe (thanks to GordonTGopher and Ken Warren for helping me out on that one at the WHS forums).  This added the computers back into the WHS console and that night, the backups ran as normal.

One more item that may be useful (it certainly saves using the Windows Home Server client connector CD), is to note that the client software is available at \\servername\software\Home Server Connector Software\setup.exe (via Optika’s workaround to beta feedback request 262981).

One thought on “Reinstalling Windows Home Server


  1. One item that I didn’t mention in this post, I did receive the following message during WHS setup:

    Windows Home Server setup error
    A computer with this name already exists in your home network. Please provide a unique home server name to continue.

    That was easy enough to resolve – I simply deleted the corresponding DNS entry before running setup (and recreated it again afterwards).

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