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HP Statement on MediaSmart Performance after Software Update

After our post yesterday regarding the performance issues after updating software on the HP MediaSmart Server’s, Brian Burch the Director of Marketing in HP’s Connected Entertainment group has been in contact with the following statement:

As you know HP released a software update for MediaSmart Server on July 21, following Microsoft’s release of Windows Home Server Power Pack 1. The HP software update provides support for 64-bit operating systems, plus two optional add-ins that a user may choose to install – McAfee Total Protection Service and PacketVideo PVConnect media server. The 64 bit upgrade prepares the MediaSmart Server for support of Vista 64-bit systems. Users do not need to enable this feature. It is an automatic update.

The PacketVideo Connect add-in provides advanced graphics such as photo thumbnails, in-menu browsing, and album art during remote access, as well as broader support for the more popular video, music and photo formats.  The McAfee anti-virus add-in will provide Server side anti-virus protection with free virus definitions for seven months. Both of these are add-ins will be automatically downloaded to the Add-In folder in the software folder on the HP MediaSmart Server. The user can add them if they choose just like any other add-in.

The McAfee Total Protection Service must index all of the files stored on the Server in order to provide the protection against a virus attack. The PacketVideo PVConnect will, upon installation, create a database of all the media files such as photos, music and videos on the Server. When these two services are installed together, the combined ‘first run’ indexing by McAfee and database creation by PacketVideo, can use the majority of the resources on the Server. This may result in slow response times from the Server until those activities have been completed. If the user has also installed other add-ins or software packages on the Server there may be an additional lag in response time. It has also been reported that the Windows Home Server Console can become unresponsive during this time.

As a result, we recommend that users install each update one at a time, independently. Users should first install Windows Home Server Power Pack 1, then PVConnect followed by McAfee.

Additionally, since the release of the HP MediaSmart Server software update, it has been discovered that PacketVideo no longer supports media streaming to a Sony Playstation 3.  This is an issue with PacketVideo, not with the MediaSmart Server. There are directions for opening the PV database and fixing the problem by inserting a space between “PLAYSTATION” and “3”.

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Comments (8)

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  1. It’s good that they came out with this statement but I don’t understand why this caught them unawares and they didn’t warn us about this before hand. I had a totally stock HP server with no addins – just updates until power pack. My server was so unresponsive after the install I thought it was seriously damaged. As a result of this experience I removed both Mcafee and PVConnect and I voided my warranty and fitted 2gb memory. Surely HP tested the install themselves on a stock machine loaded with shared files and backups so why didn’t they see this coming?
    – Martin

  2. […] signifikante Performanceeinbußen erlitten. Terry Walsh bei WeGotServed und Phillip Churchill bei MSWHS haben den Text in Englisch […]

  3. Bogdan S. says:

    Being stingy with the memory on these units HP bit itself in the …. you know where. To fix this “issue” upgrade to 2 GB memory this will not be an issue any more. BTW, why McAfee, and not any other top rated anti virus packages? I bet bitDefender folks would be willling to make a deal.

  4. W Brooker says:

    Read the three preceeding posts after having installed the two mentioned add-ins about two days ago. This morning, server is practically unresponsive to both my laptop and desktop including shared files, or access to the server console. No other changes made to server since Jan 08 other than adding two 500 gb disks to total three (1.5 TB).
    For the non-techincally inclined, what am I supposed to do now to regain server functionality? Can’t get in to remove McAfe or PVconnect add-ins if that is the answer. Need some basic instructions if possible.
    Wbrooker

  5. Dave says:

    If you’re using XP or Vista:
    1. Start > All Programs > Accessories > Remote Desktop Connection
    (or, hit Windows Key + R, type MSTSC and hit “enter”)
    2. Enter the name of your server (HPSERVER is the default for the MediaSmart servers) and click “Connect”
    3. Log in as “Administrator” and use your server’s password (the one you enter when accessing the console)
    4. You should be able to open the Console from here, or you can use Add/Remove Programs to uninstall the add-ins.

  6. W Brooker says:

    Gave it some time and finally got in from the console and removed the two recent add-ins. All is back to “normal” and I’m now debating whether to try the memory upgrade.
    Thanks for the response.

  7. Bogdan S. says:

    wbrooker,
    1. Don’t debate memory upgrade – it WILL make your server run faster. I upgraded mine and it just flies.
    2. Any antivirus program is going to slow any computer down. I am still to test the McAfee, but my concern is its reliability. From what I hear, it isn’t the best catcher of viruses.

  8. Bogdan S. says:

    I beg to differ. I am not as religious as you are on software. For me, it has to do its jobs, and WHS now does. I hope that Microsoft listens and puts additional requested features (off-site support for ENTIRE WHS backup, i.e. including PC backups, redundancy for PC backups on WHS, WHS to WHS backups, Can you imagine the possibility to have an off-site backup provided by your family member in a different city?
    WHS does backup job extremely well for users that don’t want to get involved in details of what needs to be done in order to get a good reliable backup. And this counts.

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