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onebadmofo
gat gnitsoP
Premium
join:2002-03-30
Reading, PA
kudos:1

[Beginner] Mac noob here

Just got a new Mac mini at work. We want to see if this could be something in house users, and users who don't need "Windows Only" software could take advantage of, and slim down on infections, and basic freezing issues that's plagued in Windows.

I have played with Ubuntu and still have it installed on my Dell with Windows. So I must say I was some what comfortable with getting in the Mac since it seems VERY familiar to me.

So with that said, I upgraded it to 4GB RAM I had some sitting around in laptops so I figured what the heck.

I have Parallels installed and installed Win 7 Pro on it. On that installation I installed PsychConsult Provider (Windows only software) I joined that to the domain, and then kinda stopped there. I didn't create shortcuts to shared drives or printers. Cause I want to do all that on on the Mac.

--So I found out how to join (or is it bind?) the Mac to the Windows domain. But now what? I'm not sure what I gained from there.

--Also, I was able to connect to the network shares. But when I reboot, that link to them is broken and it has to fix the alias again. Is there a way to make it permanent?

Bottom line with what I'm trying to do here is, show that Mac can perform just as good as Windows does (if not better) and provide users with everything they currently have but with the stability that Windows hasn't been providing.

But I'm kinda stuck at where to go from here. I don't expect this do everything a Win machine does on our network. But I'd like to be able to search and find our network printers and shared drives (those are the 2 biggest). I'd also like to know if there is a way to set up Parallels to do an auto logon to Windows. It would be great to have it start with OSX and then boot right into Win without any user integration. Cause then the powers that be would just say, "well then, why not just USE Windows?"

Plus I need a break from that crappy OS. It frustrates me to no end.

Any help you guys GURUS can provide is VERY appreciated.
--
Photoshop these nuts in your mouth.

Daemon
Premium
join:2003-06-29
Berkeley, CA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·webpass.net
What you can do with a Mac joined to a Windows domain depends on what the IT department is using the Windows domain to accomplish. The answers vary from "not much" in a loosely controlled IT environment to "quite a bit" in one that's more locked down.

How are you creating the network shares? I create an alias to mine and they've worked just fine for a few years now. The shares are SMB shares to Windows machines that have static IP addresses. Are you resolving via DNS or direct IP?

I don't understand why you want parallels to auto-login to windows. Do you want it to launch as an application window, or do you want it to go full screen and hide the fact you're actually on a Mac? If you're trying to accomplish the later, you'd be much better off using much cheaper commodity linux boxes and a free VM, in my opinion.

How many people are in your company? And how large is your IT department? Windows is difficult to manage without support of a well-staffed IT department, but Macs are hard to manage en masse and force to conform to IT policy. Because of that, I'd recommend Macs for smaller business and Windows for larger ones. (Linux can work for both small and large, but you really need a good-ol-fashion sysadmin, and they are harder to find)
--
-Ryan
I use Linux, OS X, iOS and Windows. Let the OS wars die.


onebadmofo
gat gnitsoP
Premium
join:2002-03-30
Reading, PA
kudos:1
We use our domain to push policies, software, link computers to shares and printers, and create the usual crt alt del logon user account.

But being our GP is screwed up, software pushing is RARELY used at all.

We're a multi county enterprise. They don't have any plans to be an all Mac shop. IT consists of 4 of us in the building i'm in. And 5 others spread through other counties.

There are about 600 people in the company state wide. But still, not looking to replace PC with Mac. Just want to maybe replace a few to relieve some frustrations with the current OS and cheaply made equipment.

This is the only Mac on the network since it's "Research & Development".

Basically a PC is configured, joined to the domain, a user with a network account is added and then shared drives are mapped manually since GP isn't pushing that out any more. Printers are add manually.

The "plan" is to see if this Mac can sit on our network and be logged onto by a network user, have access to shared drives, network printers. And for those who need windows only software...add on parallels to access the Win only software(s) without slowdown.
=================

How I'm creating the shares is...Finder>Go>Connect to Server, and then connect to desired server by typing smb://servername/share

I'm not receiving any error. What happens is when I log off or reboot, when I go to open a share, it says it has to resolve the alias. I think that is the message. I haven't rebooted or logged off in a while so I can't remember the exact wording. But after it resolves it, the share opens up and it's fine for as long as I'm logged in for.

I don't know if it's doing the same thing Windows does (but in a different way) on our network...where it opens up the window for the share, but nothing is there. Then after a few seconds it starts filling in with the folders and docs. So it may not be anything to worry about after all.

Is there a special way to add a shortcut to those shares on the desktop?

=======
As of now, I have Parallels launched as coherence mode. I'm trying to make it seem as though you're just using a Mac when using the win only apps. And it works fine, I'm just having a bit of performance issues on the Mac side when it's opened. So I guess I need to tweak it bit more.
But as far as auto login, (and I hope I don't make this sound confusing) I was wondering about it and thinking, could it be set up so that it uses the credentials of the user who is logged in the Mac? (Since those credentials would be the same for Windows anyway)

Since this is just R&D at the moment, if the auto logon can't be done) maybe the Parallels way is just to counter productive right now. It doesn't mean those that don't need Win only apps can't use a Mac productively on our network...correct?
--
Photoshop these nuts in your mouth.

Daemon
Premium
join:2003-06-29
Berkeley, CA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·webpass.net
reply to onebadmofo
I believe you can setup network login accounts on an Active Directory based domain that function on a Mac. Last time I checked, this was a hair-pulling exercise in that it only worked if you said the right chant during the right moon phase, but perhaps they have made it simpler and easier.

Resolving aliases is typical and means something like 'asking for IP address of server from DNS, then connecting to it'. It's not the most understandable message, but it isn't an error.

I believe there is a special way to add those shares to the desktop without having to connect to the servers first, but I do not remember what it is, sorry.

I wouldn't recommend giving an end user a mac with parallels on it to run windows-only software, even in coherence mode, as it is likely to be confusing and sometimes buggy. That'll only increase your IT overhead. Unless the user specifically requests that type of setup and understands the potential annoyance.

That said, a user that doesn't need any specific software can run productively on a Mac fairly easily. MS Office is available, which closes most of the gap, and Macs natively support Exchange servers. The biggest hurdle is IT staff retraining to handle the new and unexpected questions and problems that will arise using a Mac. They are easier to figure out than PCs most of the time, but Macs will still throw you for a loop now and again.
--
-Ryan
I use Linux, OS X, iOS and Windows. Let the OS wars die.


onebadmofo
gat gnitsoP
Premium
join:2002-03-30
Reading, PA
kudos:1
Now that you mention that, I think I may have seen something in AD that was Mac specific. But I don't know for sure.
I'll have to check it out when I'm back at work.

In the future (hopefully sooner than later), we'll have the option to run the Win only software via webconsole. So that will eliminate the need for parallels on most machines. We're also trying to get Sharepoint running properly, so that will eliminate the need to map drives.

Thanks for the help.

Oh one more thing, I noticed that the Mac will see network computers that are within my same IP range. But won't see anything on other floors with other IPs. Is there a way to "force" it to see those other computers (primarily servers). In other words, it's IP ends in, .60.134 ...it finds most computers on the same .60 IP on the same floor. But won't see anything else on the network. Is there a way to open that up?
--
Photoshop these nuts in your mouth.

Daemon
Premium
join:2003-06-29
Berkeley, CA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·webpass.net
reply to onebadmofo
What services are you trying to expose on the servers on the other subnets?

I'm not sure how mac auto discovery of windows services works. For Mac to Mac it uses Bonjour, so if you set the router to pass bonjour announcements between subnets, they'll find each other just fine.
--
-Ryan
I use Linux, OS X, iOS and Windows. Let the OS wars die.


onebadmofo
gat gnitsoP
Premium
join:2002-03-30
Reading, PA
kudos:1
said by Daemon:

What services are you trying to expose on the servers on the other subnets?

Not really trying to expose anything really. I was curious as to why it's seeing only what is on the same floor as it. Cause if I could "force" it to see other IP ranges from other floors, I think mapping a drive would be that much quicker. If it would show up in the shared list under Finder, it would also show up if I chose to map a drive and clicked browse.

I'm not sure how mac auto discovery of windows services works. For Mac to Mac it uses Bonjour, so if you set the router to pass bonjour announcements between subnets, they'll find each other just fine.

Would doing something like that cause any conflict with current network activities?

--
Photoshop these nuts in your mouth.

Daemon
Premium
join:2003-06-29
Berkeley, CA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·webpass.net
reply to onebadmofo
It shouldn't conflict. I believe you can also use non-standard DNS extensions to advertise things like file servers, domain controllers, etc, to clients, and the subnet of the server does not have to be the subnet of the client. It's been several years since I did professional IT, though, so my information may be out of date.
--
-Ryan
I use Linux, OS X, iOS and Windows. Let the OS wars die.


ua_hockey

join:2003-08-07
Columbus, OH
reply to onebadmofo
One of the advantages of binding to the domain is that you can use kerberos. This is useful for accessing printers/shares and authenticating to things like web servers / proxy servers, etc... if they support it. You can also write a "login script" in applescript editor that will (re)map your drives at login. Here is a sample of what you could use:

set strUserName to do shell script "whoami"
set strFileServer to "myfileserver.my.domain"
set strMount to "cifs://" & strFileServer & "/" & "PublicShare"
mount volume strMount
set strMount to "cifs://" & strFileServer & "/" & strUserName
mount volume strMount

You can check your kerberos status by typing "klist" from the terminal to see if you have a valid ticket. If you don't, you can get one by typing "kininit". There is a lot you can do, including 802.1x auth, etc..., etc.... if you have something specific, i'll try to help, but this should get you started.


ua_hockey

join:2003-08-07
Columbus, OH
reply to onebadmofo
These services are presented with a protocol called "bonjour". They are meant to be served locally, however, most services can be presented via what is called "wide area bonjour", or dns-sd (dns service discovery). With a few dns records, you can print, use file shares, etc... from an iPhone or iPad (or mac) across subnets. I have even been able to print over VPN from my iPhone. Google DNS-SD / Wide Area Bonjour for more information. Also, get familiar with the terminal. There are some utilities, such as dns-sd (and the undocumented -Z switch) that will display all of the records you need to add to BIND in order to support dns-sd. There are a TON of bonjour enabled services, including file sharing, websites, printers, airplay mirroring, etc...

Best of luck, you'll love using a mac as your primary computer.