Microsoft on Monday announced details of the upcoming release of Windows Home Server (WHS) Power Pack 1 (PP1), a major update to its recently-released home server product. WHS PP1 will include a number of new features, including support for x64-based Windows Vista clients.

The biggest change to WHS in PP1, however, concerns server backup: With this update installed, WHS owners will be able to backup their home servers to external hard drives for the first time, adding an additional layer of protection to their data. PP1 also adds new remote access functionality such as a simple way to upload multiple files, new photo thumbnail views, and more control of remote user access.

Additionally, Microsoft is investigating a WHS issue that can lead to data corruption in certain cases. The company alerted customers to this issue in December but has since scaled back the warning, noting that data corruption will only occur in rare scenarios. The company will however issue a fix as soon as possible.

Microsoft says that WHS PP1 will ship in spring 2008 via Windows Update and will be a free update for all WHS users.