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Mac Thread, Updating Mac's via Xserve in Technical; Can anyone point me in the right direction for updating Mac software but via a an Xserve? I don't relish ...
  1. #1
    theeldergeek
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    Updating Mac's via Xserve

    Can anyone point me in the right direction for updating Mac software but via a an Xserve?

    I don't relish the thought of visiting each Mac workstation during the forthcoming half-term and updating them individually! I did this before, last year, and our bandwidth was sucked inside out!!

    I know it can be done, I just need to figure out how.

    We are using Mac OS 10.5.6

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    AntonioRocco's Avatar
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    Hi

    Mac Update Service (WSUS 4 MAC)

    and

    http://images.apple.com/server/macos...dmin_v10.5.pdf

    Should be enough to get you going? However as it says in the first link SUS won't work if access is via an authenticated proxy/firewall. There is some measure of success via a transparent proxy. If your client macs are fully integrated in an AD-OD environment then you can define the SUS as a managed service. Clients will 'pull' updates down from the Server rather than looking outward to Apple's Updates Servers.

    Essentially all you have to do is make sure there is no interference from any proxy/firewall first and Start the Service. Updates should then begin to download from akugami.net. Depending on your bandwidth this can take anywhere from 2-3 days. You don't get an option to 'cherrypick' which updates are downloaded - they all come down in one big lump. You do get some options to update recently replaced ones after the initial download. You don't get a progress bar either of what's happening during the download. For 'progress status' you need to look at Activity Monitor (/Applications/Utilties) or issue top in the command line. You're looking for a process daemon(s) that looks something like this: swupdsync.

    The admin manual tells you the where the updates are stored. You could periodically "Get Info" on that directory and watch it's size bloat over time. Eventually you should see anywhere between 13-16GB of downloads.

    Apple's Updates are downloaded in a particular format which makes it impossible to create .dmgs or .imgs from. Neither can you take a .dmgs, .imgs, .pkgs or .mpkgs and drop them in the relevant directory as they won't work.

    Antonio Rocco (ACSA)

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    Hacksawbob's Avatar
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    cant really justify a mac server based on this.

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    theeldergeek
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hacksawbob View Post
    cant really justify a mac server based on this.
    eh? Based on what? We already have a Mac server (xserve)

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    Hacksawbob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tx2online View Post
    eh? Based on what? We already have a Mac server (xserve)
    Sorry I mean, I cant justify it.

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    The SUS will definitely save time and bandwidth on the downloading front, but the client machines won't actually install the updates by themselves.

    Apparently (though I've not tried this), if you've got Apple Remote Desktop, you can run the following Unix command on the remote machines:

    Code:
    softwareupdate -di
    That ought to download and install the updates from SUS. I don't think it actually restarts the machines though.

    Stephen

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    Hi

    All the command does is initiates a software update for clients added to ARD. If clients have not been configured to use the local Service they'll go out and fetch them from Apple's Updates Server. Not good if bandwidth is an issue. To use the command effectively you still have to configure clients to point to the local Service first.

    If you are pushing MCX to mac clients it makes sense to provide the service as a managed one. Then you could use ARD via remote session to initiate updates. ARD does have the facility to restart and shutdown clients remotely amongst other things. Look in the Manage menu.

    In my experience some buy the product without fully realizing its capabilities. Moreover some have it still wrapped up in its box locked in a cupboard somewhere having never used it.

    Antonio Rocco (ACSA)

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