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Mac Networking made easy Mac Networking made easy
Have you purchased a battery Macs into the office? To get them together into a viable Mac network is all you need OS X... Mac Networking made easy

Have you purchased a battery Macs into the office? To get them together into a viable Mac network is all you need OS X Server. And this article.

In too many offices run only a single base solution. All clients behave themselves. Available features depend more on some fallen over a button than it is an idea. But it works. At least until something stops working, someone deletes a file, the phone will be on the loose or anything else miserable hands. Only then will all realize that the matter should be managed in a different way. Do you think that only Windows users the privilege to use directory services, centralized management, and shared resources? Or maybe it is expensive and cumbersome to get to?

In fact, if any, you are wrong. In both cases, additionally. With OS X Server, Apple has made it easier than ever to get a professional office solution. As if that were not enough, it has become cheaper as well.

To prove how easy it is, we show you how to set up an office network with a central administration in just a few hours. More complicated than it is actually not. At least not if you are using OS X Lion Server.

Physically setting up a network with some machines is extremely simple nowadays. Gone are the days when you had to pull the cords of the office and put terminators at the ends. Nowadays, the radio waves that manages the job. All you need to do is get a router, a few machines, and software. A piece of cake.

By using multiple Airport, you can expand the network considerably. It may be a good idea and considerably cheaper than pulling cables. The price is also lower transfer speed.

Server, yes. If you have any clients that will share the features do you best to get one? It is not absolutely necessary, but it gives you good opportunities. It also eliminates a user Sega down common background jobs. To cross-connect everything and let all clients run free is a really bad idea.

For the small office, it takes is a Mac Mini Server. It is relatively inexpensive but still capable of almost anything. It also has two disks internally, so you get some redundancy. How you configure it, we come to.

That said, it is unnecessary to pull cables. Is there already it does not hurt, but otherwise it is better to buy an Airport Extreme and run everything on the way. If you do not have very much traffic or sitting in the stone house, that is. Then the cords still king.

Most of your server is handled through the server tool. But the profiles you manage via a web interface. It goes a little slower, but you can access it from multiple places.

Airport Extreme

Set up your AirPort Extreme so that it functions as the only link to the grid. To do this, simply connect the cable from the broadband provider. Then just turn on your device and go through the wizard.

The only thing you need to consider is the name and possibly the frequencies you want to use. Turning on encryption is a given. Enable also DHCP function and select a range of numbers for internal use.

On your clients, set fixed IP numbers within the range you defined above. It simplifies the identification of the equipment if you want to share information directly between users, without going through the server.

Printers with network support
The configuration is done under “Network”, which you will find among the other system settings. Select your network, click on “Advanced” and then “TCP / IP”. Configure IPv4 with a manual address.
Is it far between the clients and the signal are weak, an Airport Express to help and expand the signal area. The function named “Extend a wireless network.” You get to choose that option during installation. Just select your old network and enter the password.

To buy printers and external hard drives are perhaps the most difficult part on the purchasing side. The market is a jungle. Just keep close tabs on the machines supporting OS X. Most do it now, but there are exceptions.

Think carefully when choosing names. Once you’ve done that, it can be cumbersome to change. The encoded namely into all of your services when you start them.

Furthermore, it is a good idea to buy products that have built-in network support. You can connect both printers, hard drives and other accessories for both your Mac mini and your Airport. Though it will be easier if you avoid that step.

Do not forget that you should have a fixed IP address externally if you want others to be able to access services on the inside. This applies, for example, if you want to turn on the VPN connections.

Once you have all the hardware in place, it’s time to fix the software. It comes with it, so it’s not that complicated. For the server part is it something a little more advanced. But not if you bought a Mini Server or Pro Server. If so, follow the correct operating system.

Would you rather use an old client that’s fine too? Just make sure to install the usual OS X Lion on it. Server function is, in fact, nothing own operating system anymore, but a supplement that you purchase on the App Store. Log in, click on the buy button and a handful of minutes later it is ready.

You will not notice much difference after installation. Fixed binoculars you extra carefully, you will notice a new icon in the dock. It is, appropriately enough, named “Server”. This is where everything happens. Click on it to start your administration.

If you have DHCP enabled, your server gets a new IP after the restart. It is not at all successful. So make sure to enter a hard-coded number when you set up your machine.

The first thing that appears is a box asking you which server you want to configure. At the top, the current machine being a choice. In any case, if there is a server equipped machine. Select it. You will have to enter your account information.

Then it’s time to configure your machine. Start by clicking on your server in the “Hardware”. There you will see information about your computer. Click through to the “Network.” Here you can see what your computing devices.

Computer Name Changes
If you do not like what you see, you can click on the buttons to the right to change. Change the computer name to “Macworld Server”. You can also change the network name. To do that, you go through a wizard. Since we set up a local server, select this option. Labeling machine “macworldserver.local”.

Also, click “Change Network …”. This takes you to the network settings. Make sure that your computer does not use DHCP with dynamic allocation. Enter instead into its own IP number. Without this, there is the risk that the number will change and that your clients suddenly can not access your machine. This is especially important on your server.

Users on the network receive a small blue balloon in the lower right corner. Same globe symbol is also available on the groups if they hang on OD St.

When everything is in place it is time to put up the central user management. In OS X, the solution is Open Directory. It represents about Microsoft’s more renowned Active Directory.

Go up the menu and choose “Manage Network Accounts …” under the “Manage”. You will have to go through even a wizard to set up the solution. In practice, you only need to create a user. It is the administrator who will handle everything. Let the default name, “diradmin”, be and enter a password. After a few minutes, the service is started.

Add users

When this is done, add your users. But start by first creating a user group. This makes it easier, among other things to set rules and provide multiple users access to shared folders simultaneously. Click on “Groups” and then the plus sign to the right. Enter the name “User”.

You will see a small blue ball in your group. This is because it is tied to the Open Directory and not just a local variant. The same graphic blob will appear on your users.

Speaking of which, it is now time to create them. Therefore, go over to the “Users”. Just as with the groups, press the plus sign. Then, just to enter data. When you are finished, right-click them and select “Edit user …”. Add to the group “Users” and delete the default, if you want.

Note that you are in the right-click menu also has the option “Edit Access to Services …”. If you do not want users to be able to access everything that you configure your server, you can set it here. VPN may only be offered to a few?

Now is the time to create a certificate. There is a security feature that lets clients know who the sender is. Unfortunately, it costs money to get a really, but you can build a home carved sufficient decently well for a small network.

Therefore, click your server, and then click “Settings”. Click the “Edit …” to the right of the “SSL Certificate”. In the list at the top, select your own certificate. It will probably be called “macworldserver.local – macworldserver.local OD Intermediate CA”.
Now you have the basic installation is complete, settings and everything. But right now doing your server really nothing. There are no services that help your users in any way. Let’s change that.

In Server tool, there are eleven services that you can activate. Some of them are very basic, others considerably more complicated. Below we will go through the services that are most relevant for the small office. Unfortunately, there is not room for everything, but we will go through the remaining elements of the future Pro pages.

Sharing

The first thing you need is file sharing. With this feature, you can add users’ home directories on the server instead of the client. This is particularly interesting if you want to have public terminals.

Go to the “File Sharing”. There you will see a list of directories. In this case, you should choose a new one. Click the plus sign and select the appropriate folder on your hard drive. If you want to create a press button “New Folder”.

Once you have selected location, select the folder from the list and press the button with the little pen. In the “Access” add “Read & Write” privilege to the group “Users”. Also, be sure to check the “Make Available for home directories over AFP”.

If your client manages to shake hands with the Open Directory server, you will see it. A green light is happily just to the left of the name of your server.

When all this is done, the service will start itself. There you will see the large button on the top right. But it also calls for a green light to the left of the heading in the side. This is not all you can do with file sharing, but we will come back to it later.

Now go back to users. Double-click on them and change the “Home Folder” to the new directory. Make sure to do it for all users that will have central home folders.

Everything is clear to your users. Start a client and go to “System Preferences”. Then click on the icon “Users and Groups”. To the left is the choice “Login”. Select it and you will get out some options to the right. Press the “Connect …”.

Connect clients
in the list at the top, select your server. Is it not in the list, you can enter the name. What you do now is connect your client to the login server you just started. Choose to trust the certificate when prompted.

When everything is ready, a green light shining in your window and your server name to appear. Verify that the option “Allow network users to log in via the login window” is checked. It is also not a bad idea to opt out of automatic login.

Time to test! Log out of your user. Alternatively, you can click on your name in the top menu bar and select “Login Window”. When you connect again, you will see the option “Other …”. Click on the circle. There, you enter the data of your key users. All files saved ports on your server.

No matter where your users store their files like they sure do not keep all to themselves. Communal areas may, therefore, be useful to have. To achieve this, you really only use the same function that we looked at earlier – file sharing.

Make directories visible
to open up a folder is very simple. You just tell which users are able to access the directory on the file system. Then be sure to activate the service. The last step should already be clear if you followed from the start.

Click “File Sharing”, followed by a plus sign. Select the folder you want to be available to other users. Then double-click on it to make settings. At the top gives you rights at a granular level. For example, you can give a named account or group write access while all others may only read.

There are a few flags that are worth paying attention to. Normally, all you share available via the Apple Filing Protocol (AFP), Server Message Block (SMB). The first protocol is sufficient if only Macs will access the files. The second is primarily intended for Windows machines but works on OS X as well.

The next box is even more interesting. Because you can share information via WebDAV. It is a protocol that your iOS devices understand. Check the box for a delivery and pick up either your iPad or iPhone.

Then download an iOS app from the iTunes Store that supports WebDAV. Apple’s office suite has it built in, but if you do not own the product, you can select WebDAV Navigator instead. It costs nothing and shows how it works.

By turning on a single flag, you can make folders visible to your iOS devices. It is a feature that is especially interesting if you use iWorksviten from Apple.

Start the application on your iOS device and click the plus sign. Type in any name and then click “Server URL”. Enter “https: // / WebDAV”. Continue with the username and password as well. When everything is ready, you can connect and see what you come for.

Enough with iOS for a while. The next step is in place to connect the calendars. To let the world know when you’re free or not makes life significantly. At the same time, it might be good to also share address books.

These two features of each have a service on the server. First, start “Address Book”. Just click on it and select “On”. If you want, you can click in the only choice you have, “Include directory contacts in the search.” It will make all the accounts on the server appears under a category called “Directory Services”.

Start now “iCal” in the same way. Also, add a resource by clicking the plus sign. Here you can define, for example, a projector or a room will also be bookable.

Add Account

There are now two ways to connect services to the clients. If you want, you can go into the settings of “iCal” and “Address Book” and on to the Account tab. There you can choose to add a “CalDAV” -, and “CardDAV” account. The only thing you need is to enter your data and server name.

But it is even easier to use the central function. You can find it in the system settings. Click on “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” and you will arrive. Press “Add Account …” and then on “Other”. Once you have entered your login data creates OS X the rest of your applications.

Now you have the address book centrally. Additionally, you can share your internal contacts. Though some joint management of the data will not be. You want it, you must create an account on the server. Then, allow all clients to connect to it too.

If you know exactly what features you want are the easiest to configure them all. Then you can just log on to your clients and add to the account. Then run all the features in at once.

Now, when you add events to iCal, it is important to select the correct calendar. The one you want is on your server. If you have it selected, you will get input help for invited and sites. There are other users on the server and your predefined resources that come up. If you book a meeting with someone they will see your request in his calendar.

The next little finesse, iChat. If you want to use direct messages internally in the office without external functions, this service is not at all stupid. It is activated when you press the “On”.

Again, go to the “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” to add up the account. Once you have it in place, you can add users to the network. The program will find that they are and help you with the names.

Tie together all of your iChat
When the other users show up, you just start talking. The program will keep track of whether they are present or not. All other iChatfunktioner are of course also available, for example, to share the screen with a colleague.

If you want everyone to be on the track directly, you can enter the group definition again. There you can check the box “Make group members iChat buddies.” It ties together all accounts in the group in iChat.

Are you able to share information on an internal website, you can use the wiki? Just like the other functions needed just one touch to get started.

Setting up a central authentication service is almost ridiculously easy in OS X Lion Server. You only need to configure a user. The rest takes place in the background.

Once it is in place, you can again go to the group view. Click “Create Group Wiki …”. You are now on a web page where you can enter the name and description. Do it and click “Next”.
Here you set what rights each user will have. Define your group is the owner and create the page. Now you have a common surface that other accounts can not access.

With all this started, it’s time to start sharing devices. Perhaps the most common resource is the printer. Today, most machines connect to it directly. This means that the server is no longer relevant. Each client simply points out the target directly.

But there are exceptions. If you have one, you can use your new server as a central point. Go into your system settings and proceed to the “Printers and scanners”. Add to your machine and click through any guides.

Add Account

There are now two ways to connect services to the clients. If you want, you can go into the settings of “iCal” and “Address Book” and on to the Account tab. There you can choose to add a “CalDAV” -, and “CardDAV” account. The only thing you need is to enter your data and server name.

But it is even easier to use the central function. You can find it in the system settings. Click on “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” and you will arrive. Press “Add Account …” and then on “Other”. Once you have entered your login data creates OS X the rest of your applications.

Now you have the address book centrally. Additionally, you can share your internal contacts. Though some joint management of the data will not be. You want it, you must create an account on the server. Then, allow all clients to connect to it too.

If you know exactly what features you want are the easiest to configure them all. Then you can just log on to your clients and add to the account. Then run all the features in at once.

Now, when you add events to iCal, it is important to select the correct calendar. The one you want is on your server. If you have it selected, you will get input help for invited and sites. There are other users on the server and your predefined resources that come up. If you book a meeting with someone they will see your request in his calendar.

The next little finesse, iChat. If you want to use direct messages internally in the office without external functions, this service is not at all stupid. It is activated when you press the “On”.

Again, go to the “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” to add up the account. Once you have it in place, you can add users to the network. The program will find that they are and help you with the names.

Tie together all of your iChat
When the other users show up, you just start talking. The program will keep track of whether they are present or not. All other iChatfunktioner are of course also available, for example, to share the screen with a colleague.

If you want everyone to be on the track directly, you can enter the group definition again. There you can check the box “Make group members iChat buddies.” It ties together all accounts in the group in iChat.

Are you able to share information on an internal website, you can use the wiki? Just like the other functions needed just one touch to get started.

Setting up a central authentication service is almost ridiculously easy in OS X Lion Server. You only need to configure a user. The rest takes place in the background.

Once it is in place, you can again go to the group view. Click “Create Group Wiki …”. You are now on a web page where you can enter the name and description. Do it and click “Next”.
Here you set what rights each user will have. Define your group is the owner and create the page. Now you have a common surface that other accounts can not access.

With all this started, it’s time to start sharing devices. Perhaps the most common resource is the printer. Today, most machines connect to it directly. This means that the server is no longer relevant. Each client simply points out the target directly.

But there are exceptions. If you have one, you can use your new server as a central point. Go into your system settings and proceed to the “Printers and scanners”. Add to your machine and click through any guides.

Sharing printers

Bottom of the page there is a checkbox for “Share this printer on the network.” Mark. This will automatically activate the sharing feature. But you can also verify this by clicking “Show All” and then “Sharing”. The “Printer” must be checked.

If you do not want everyone to access the printer, you can hold the rights. Click the plus sign to add it to or the users and groups you want to grant access to the printer. Then select access.

As a rule, you will see your server in the prefilled list. But if that were not the case, you can enter the name or IP number. Fast expect that it can mess in that case.

Another very important feature is still there – Time Machine. With OS X Server can centralize management in a simple way. Click the header in the Server tool. Click the “Edit …” and choose where you want the backups to go. Then click “On”.

On all the clients you then go to System Preferences and on to Time Machine. Unlock feature by clicking on the padlock and then select the hard drive. Then it will pop up a folder on your server. Select it. More than that, you do not do.

Profiles
The last thing we have time in this review are the profiles, a really nice new feature in OS X Lion Server. That may not sound like anything special, but the profiles are the key to managing client computers on the network. In any case, if they are few in number.

Full functionality is administered through a Web interface. But for that to show up, you need to first start the feature. You do this in the Server tool. The title you should click on the “Profile Manager”. Change nothing, but only enable the service by pressing the button.

After a while pops the link “Open Profile Manager” the bottom right. Click on it. You will come to a login page. There you will enter the information for the administrator of the Open Directory.
Once you have access to users, groups, and devices. Click your way into a group and then press the “Profile” box to the right. Then select “Edit” to display a new window. To the left is a list of rules you can set.

Click on the “Passcode”. Here you can see that your iOS users certainly use a code on their devices. Click “Ok” followed by “Save” on the overview page.

Now the rule is defined and it is time to apply it on a device.

Join your iOS device to “https: // / mydevices” and log on.

You can use your tool to deal with other Macs on the network. In some larger installations is not a server, but it could be hundreds.

You can log on to both the general settings and those you just created. Do it and choose to install them. When you are done there are rules in place.

Congratulations – you have now tied up both mobile and desktop clients with your server. Thanks to the centralized administration have also taken control of the other computers in the network. All this without much more than a handful of keystrokes. Not bad, Lion.

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