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Mac Thread, Mac Only Network in Technical; We're about to setup a separate Mac only network which will have no connection with our existing Windows setup. I ...
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    Mac Only Network

    We're about to setup a separate Mac only network which will have no connection with our existing Windows setup. I was wondering if anyone else had set something like this up and could offer some advice.

    Our biggest worry is storage for user home directories. We are leaning towards a NAS device but researching this shows that there can be some issues. What would be the recommendation? Something that will work well and will allow set up of automated home folders and permissions via Profile Manager.

    Any advice would be appreciated.

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    Why not just connect to your existing file servers?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    Why not just connect to your existing file servers?
    Good point... we tried this in the past and it was very slow, not sure why but maybe because it was an SMB share. We want a share that is either AFP or NFS based which I've heard is a little faster. Also, as this is a separate network we wanted to keep it away from our existing kit.

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    Not had problems in the past with SMB shares. I would look at fixing the core issue than a work around.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    Not had problems in the past with SMB shares. I would look at fixing the core issue than a work around.
    So even if we were to go with an SMB share would you recommend a NAS drive?

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    I'd agree with @FN-GM - our Macs connect to our SMB shares absolutely fine with no issues. OSX 10.5 through to 10.8.

    Check that your clients are up to date though - we did have some performance issues with some versions of 10.5.x and 10.7.x...

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    Quote Originally Posted by quaium View Post
    So even if we were to go with an SMB share would you recommend a NAS drive?
    I would just use your existing file servers.

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    Exactly... why make life complicated with more stuff to manage?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    I would just use your existing file servers.
    If that was the case we would be using storage on a SAN... could there be any issues with that and how would we mount it as a drive so the Mac Server can see it?

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    Shouldn't be any issues.
    My Macs access the files on my NetApp SAN with no issues.

    Just bind your macs to AD and they'll connect to the home drive as specified in the user account properties.

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    We use AD and bind to the SMB shares and we did notice horrific delays. After much, much searching it all seemed to be on one Windows 2003 server. Since the users have migrated to a newer 2008 Server the performance is fine. We redirect ~tmp to the local drive for better performance and it seems to be fine.

    Never did found out what was wrong with that 2003 server!

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    It really depends for what purpose you are getting macs?

    If for DV and Music, then YOU MUST EDIT LOCALLY. FCP and Logic do not play nice with files across *ANY* network. Sure it might work ok... but sometimes it wont.


    Our method involves software as part of the mac costs: Student use only one machine through out the year, they work locally, but have a connection to the Windows network through ExtremZ-IP to access their Windows home folder for Word docs etc. Magic Triangle for authentication. The macs backup to a large cheap firewire box attached to the mac server.

    Pretty bullet proof. No complaints about performance, or files and folders or applications crashing in the two years it has been running. (10.6 FWIW, 10.7 was badly broken when we were implementing)

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    Quote Originally Posted by psydii View Post
    It really depends for what purpose you are getting macs?

    If for DV and Music, then YOU MUST EDIT LOCALLY. FCP and Logic do not play nice with files across *ANY* network. Sure it might work ok... but sometimes it wont.


    Our method involves software as part of the mac costs: Student use only one machine through out the year, they work locally, but have a connection to the Windows network through ExtremZ-IP to access their Windows home folder for Word docs etc. Magic Triangle for authentication. The macs backup to a large cheap firewire box attached to the mac server.

    Pretty bullet proof. No complaints about performance, or files and folders or applications crashing in the two years it has been running. (10.6 FWIW, 10.7 was badly broken when we were implementing)
    Yeah we also had issues with 10.7 and stuck with 10.6 in the end.

    We run Sibelius and Logic on them and they're fine across the network - apart from the fact Sibelius takes longer to 'find' the license server on a mac than it does on a windows PC- but only for the first run of the day.

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    Sounds like you need to check your DNS for forward and reverse lookups. There's no reason why a Mac should be any slower at accessing SMB shares or discovering Sib licence servers. Ours aren't.

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    Been through all that. Dns all working fine and everything resolves instantly with nslookup and dig etc. It only sib7 that has the problem and that's as buggy as hell anyway.

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