Server OS

I'm thinking of building a home server for backup and maybe private email and a personal intranet.

But i'm not sure which server operating system to use. I only use Windows computers on my network which is between 4-8 computers large, and i am not sure whether to use a linux, unix, apple or windows server for my purposes.

So what is the best server os for my purposes and how would i build a personal intranet?
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  1. Go have a look at http://www.turnkeylinux.org/. do you want a mail server and a file server? then have a look at ClearOS, great piece of software, and easey to use http://www.clearfoundation.com/Software/overview.html
  2. Depends whether you enjoy being shafted by M$ insane licensing costs or not, personally I would go Linux/BSD.
  3. For home servers, CentOS 5 is probably the easiest to work with. (Don't go with 6. they removed a lot of the features that made 5 so easy to work with and just made 6 a general PITA. BTW, CentOS is just a debranded version of RedHat. So it was RedHat that made the bad design decisions.)

    Windows Server 2008 R2 is the easiest to work with and has the most features, but it costs a bundle. I use it only because I got a free license from Microsoft's Dreamspark program. (That gives certain licenses to college students to encourage them to program in the way Microsoft prefers, but it is useful for IT students as well, since it includes licenses for Server OSes.
  4. Windows Home Server 2011 uses the sever 08 kernal, is pretty easy to setup

    and

    you usually can find it for less than $50 brand new.
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