Hot on the heels of the Windows Line OneCare 1.6 update comes the public beta of OneCare 2.0.

As well as beefing up the security features of the engine this new version offers a bunch of cool new features that make keeping your home PCs secure and performing well a little bit easier

  • Multi PC management - designate a hub PC and then add additional PCs to your OneCare circle using a common Windows Live ID. You can then see the status of the other PCs within the group.
  • Printer Sharing - share your printer with all the PCs in your OneCare circle
  • OneCare Online Photo Backup - paid storage will be available online for photo backups (currently not in the beta)
  • Securing wireless networks - if your router is supported OneCare 2.0 will allow you to secure your wireless network
  • Startup tuneup
  • x64 support

One thing that I really like about this version is that the backup feature is aware of Windows Home Server functionality so if you're using that as your network backup solution then it won't panic because your data isn't safe.

If you have an existing OneCare subscription then you won't be able to activate the beta using that existing account, but you can enable the multi-pc feature if you sign in (but not activate - you need a product key for that) with a Live ID.

You can sign up for the beta here, discuss it in the OneCare support forums, and follow the news on the OneCare blog.