PC/Mac Servers?



  • Hey all,

        By no means am I a hardware or networking guy - so this may be a silly question, but I can't seem to find a quick answer or even any useful information anywhere else.

    I'm supposed to find a server for our company.  The only issue is that the team of graphic artists all use Macs while everyone else uses PCs.  Is it possible to set up a network/server to integrate both types of machines?  Is there special software that I'd have to get to allow this?  Are there out-of-the-box solutions?  How hard is this to do - or does it just automagically work with any server?

    Any suggestions are helpful and appreciated.

    Thanks.
     



  • It's not a silly question at all, but not a simple one, either.  Mac OS has the ability to use CIFS, the same thing most Windows folks know as Network Neighborhood.  Macs can mount Windows shares that the Windows PCs are using.  If you have a UNIX server, you can use the Samba software to provide printer/disk access as well.  With Samba on UNIX, built-ins on Mac OS X, and built-ins on Windows, you can have network shares of disks/files/printers.  Likewise, most file servers or NAS (network attached storage) allow for SMB (another name for the Windows stuff), so again, *nix, Mac, and Windows boxen can access these files.



    Macs have web and ssh servers built in, and so any other machine with a working ssh client or web browser can access.

     


    What other kind of integration were you thinking of? 



  • Thanks for the reply.

    Basically, the bosses want a server where we can store our art files that both PC and Mac users need to get to throughout the day.  It'd be used to both share with everyone in the company, and ultimately a place to archive old projects.  PC users would be able to access the mapped network via Windows Explorer, and the artists would use their crazy Mac Navigator thingy.

     The quick fix would be to just tell them to replace the Macs with PCs, but if it's doable with our current setup, then obviously money not spent on new computers would be a plus.
     

    I have very limited knowledge when it comes to using a Mac.  I can stumble through connecting all the PCs to a server, it's just the stumbling through the Mac setup that is daunting. 



  • If you go with a samba or windows file/print sharing-based solution (samba!  samba!  It's good!):

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106471 

    should get you sorted out on the macs. 



  • The last time I had to make Macs and PCs talk to each other professionally, System 9 was not-quite out yet.  At least they finally supported Ethernet by then, and NT had Services for Mac; overall, it wasn't bad.

     
    My wife is a public school teacher, and still has some Centris-era Macs in her room; one word:  LocalTalk.  <shudder>  (Or is that two words?)

     
    Anyway, now with OS X, I actually wish I could afford a machine of my own to play with.  We're renting a room to a friend of my wife's, and making her Power book play nice with my Windows/Linux network was pretty easy.

     
    I don't think you would need to be a "network guy" to make it all work, but you will want to make sure your knowledge of basic networking stuff is solid.  Your project is pretty straightforward, but I'd say you do have some reading to do.  Good luck, and enjoy the learning process.



  • @Sgt. Zim said:

    one word:  LocalTalk.  <shudder>  (Or is that two words?)

    One scream of horror, I think. 



  • @Sgt. Zim said:

    Anyway, now with OS X, I actually wish I could afford a machine of my own to play with

    Uh Mac Minis start at $600 (w/o screen, keyboard or mouse)



  • @masklinn said:

    @Sgt. Zim said:
    Anyway, now with OS X, I actually wish I could afford a machine of my own to play with

    Uh Mac Minis start at $600 (w/o screen, keyboard or mouse)

    But since this is apple, the screen, keyboard, and mouse will all use a unique proprietary connector which no other computer in the world uses, and the apple-brand models of those will cost an additional $600. Each.
     



  • @asuffield said:

    @masklinn said:
    @Sgt. Zim said:
    Anyway, now with OS X, I actually wish I could afford a machine of my own to play with

    Uh Mac Minis start at $600 (w/o screen, keyboard or mouse)

    But since this is apple, the screen, keyboard, and mouse will all use a unique proprietary connector which no other computer in the world uses, and the apple-brand models of those will cost an additional $600. Each.

    Fortunately everybody else has seen the wisdom of the 'proprietary' standard apple interconnects known as universal serial bus and firewire/IEE1394. Even Sun switched away from their own keyboard connectors 🙂 

    Edit: But oh no, they don't come with a floppy drive. Who would buy a computer without a floppy drive! What a marketing screwup 🙂 



  • @asuffield said:

    @masklinn said:
    @Sgt. Zim said:
    Anyway, now with OS X, I actually wish I could afford a machine of my own to play with

    Uh Mac Minis start at $600 (w/o screen, keyboard or mouse)

    But since this is apple, the screen, keyboard, and mouse will all use a unique proprietary connector which no other computer in the world uses, and the apple-brand models of those will cost an additional $600. Each.
     

    Yeah Apple uses awfully proprietary usb connectors for mice and keyboards and even more proprietary DVI connectors for the screen output of the Mac Mini.

    Yeah...

    Anyway, do you have any real complaints about Mac Minis, instead of your delusions?

    edit: good point from Nandurius, Mac Minis come without a floppy disk drive... APPLE BASTARDS, LET'S BURN THEM ALL ALIVE888



  • Clearly you people are too young to appreciate the joys of ADB.



  • @ItsAllGeekToMe said:

     The quick fix would be to just tell them to replace the Macs with PCs,

    You call yourself a geek? That's the most ignorant thing I've heard on thiese boards in a while. Congratulations on being your own WTF.

    You don't think it would be quicker and easier to take the advice already given here and just connect the Macs to the Windows shares? The painful and difficult setup process consists of: Open Finder, click Network, browse to the server, enter password, and continue your business as usual.


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