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Re: [K12OSN] Supporting Macs on a Linux server

David Bucknell wrote:
> I just received this question from a school superintendent -- the real school
> policy setter -- asking about experience supporting Mac workstations on a Linux
> server. I use samba to support wintel boxes, but have only read about Netatalk
> until now. Could experienced users please respond?
> Here's the question, obviously backed up by a tech person who's done the basic
> research:
> "If you do use Linux, do  you use it in a Macintosh environment and how do
> you find the Netatalk solution working on your network for older boxes
> versus OS X? Do you use Red Hat or YellowDog or what ever distribution?

I have found netatalk to work well with Mac OS's back through 7.1 on old
LC's. While we do not have a Linux server supporting any all Mac
buildings as the sole server yet, we have had linux servers running in
various roles in PC buildings that also have a few Mac's for a couple of
years. We have had a Linux server running our repair shop for at least
two years and it is utilized in nearly every Mac repair we do as a test
of the ability of the computer being repaired to access a network
server. Often these repairs also involve installing software (browsers,
open transport etc.) on the machine after repair and this is done from
the server. We use x86 boxes running RedHat. YellowDog, AFAIK, runs on
Mac PPC hardware which we try to avoid because of cost - x86 hardware is
much cheaper.

The caveat in this is that we haven't run a linux server as sole support
in a Mac building. As such we haven't dealt with configuring network
printers through the server (though I'm told it's not difficult) or even
multiple shares - particularly shares that are accessible via multiple
logons like a shared apps directory. Right now it's pretty much limited
to each user logging in and seeing only their *nix home share. We
haven't needed more yet...

> Do any of you find the NFS a good solution with Mac OS X or is it still
> better for your school to still run an AppleTalk protocol versus TCP/IP? "

We don't use NFS for anything - can't help you there. With the smb
support OSX has - samba(?) - I'm not sure, we've found it FAR easier to
set up the mac's running OSX to hit the smb servers (sadly it's 2000 in
these cases) than it is to get the 2000 servers to run mac services
worth a hoot.

Mike Rambo
mrambo lsd k12 mi us

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