Throughout the course of this book, we've introduced you to a wide variety of Windows Home Server add-ins. They do everything from managing streaming media to helping you create a Web site. They manage your home automation system and they upload your pictures to online photo sharing sites. It seems that the sky's the limit when it comes to extending Windows Home Server with add-ins.
Now, do you want to know a secret? Many, if not most, of the add-ins that we've described in this book weren't created by teams of programmers working for a corporation. They were created by hobbyists and entrepreneurial programmers who were inspired by the power and extensibility of Windows Home Server and decided that they wanted to be a part of extending it.
Cost is no barrier to entry when it comes to creating add-ins, either. You can use Microsoft's Visual Studio Express Edition, a free-to-use version of their venerable professional Visual Studio development package along with some libraries to provide Windows Home Server application program interface (API) functions.
While add-ins are not difficult to create, you will find that a knowledge of programming, and Windows programming, in particular, will be very helpful. That goes for when you're reading this chapter and, especially, when you decide to try your hand at creating ...