Mac Thread, Homemade software "Windows Connect" Access Windows Documents Folders on Mac in Technical; Hi guys,
I thought I would share a project I am working on with you and ask for a bit ...
13th March 2012, 04:01 PM #1
- Rep Power
Homemade software "Windows Connect" Access Windows Documents Folders on Mac
I thought I would share a project I am working on with you and ask for a bit of help from anyone who knows Cocoa / Applescript and using Xcode 4.3.1
This program is a simple GUI that works around any WorkGroup Manager Restrictions to Mount an SMB Network Share to a Mac Desktop using Windows Credentials.
There are 2 versions of this software, one for Students and one for Staff which has some extra drives available for mounting for Staff Acces Only (ie Staff Shared Area)
1.) We will be able to retire our old Mac Server and Mac Storage and bridge the divide between the Mac and Windows Network.
2.) All users will only have 1 user name and password for Logging in to Windows which will be used for Windows Machines, "Windows Connect" on Macs, Moodle Access and Smoothwall
3.) We only have to back up one area of storage for all users data.
1.) We will be able to have a standard Lion / Mountain Lion build designed for our Mac's that has a local Administrator Logon and a Guest Logon (locked down with Local Workgroup Manager Settings that wipes any changes after each log on/off cycle).
2.) Upon logging on with the Guest Account users will have their usual suite of programs - iLife 11, CS5, Office 2011, Logic and Final Cut etc as well as internet access (provided through Smoothwall with an Active Directory SSL Login Page) and they will have the "Windows Connect" gui available in the Dock. A user will log in to "Windows Connect" with their Windows ID
3.) Once they have logged in they will be able to mount their own Personal Area for storage via SMB and be able to save all their work their.
4.) This SMB Share will show as usable space in all Applications including iMovie 11 which has had issues with server based Home Drives.
WINDOWS CONNECT -
The program / gui looks like this
This is clearly the Staff Edition.
How the program runs is when you click the "mount" button it connects to the SMB share of where their user area is with their windows credentials
set drivemount to "smb://" & userNameValue & ":" & userPWValue & "@FDC/" & userNameValue & "$/Documents"
mount volume drivemount
It then notifies them via a Display Dialog whether it was successful or not and tells them to press the "Open" Button accordingly
Because of the tight restrictions we have in place with Workgroup manager, even after the drive has mounted the user cannot see it on the Desktop or in finder.
The "open" button solves that issue for them with a simple
set driveid to "/Volumes/Documents"
-- change to
-- set hdriveid to "/Volumes/" & userNameValue & "$/Documents"
-- for OS X Lion
open (driveid as POSIX file)
NB - This program / gui has been designed and written in XCode 4.3.1 using the 10.6 SDK to ensure it works on our current Snow Leopard Machine's for testing. Because of the difference in how Snow Leopard mounts the user areas to how Lion does there has had to be 2 versions of each piece of software designed.
The same commands are issued for the M Drive (Staff Shared Area) however only this part is needed
set drivemount to "smb://" & userNameValue & ":" & userPWValue & "@SDC4450/Staff_Res"
mount volume drivemount
set driveid to "/Volumes/Staff_Res"
open (driveid as POSIX file)
The Display Dialog tells the user to keep "Windows Connect" open until they log off so they can quickly reopen their folder / folders whenever they need.
WHAT I NEED SOME HELP WITH -
Although the program works exactly as it should and is more than fit for purpose I am a bit of a perfectionist and want to make the GUI as user friendly and intuitive as possible. If you look on the ScreenShot you will see a TickBox that says Connected. I would like that box to be automatically ticked if the script is successful. Ideally I would like to replace it with a RED/GREEN light and make the "Open" button disabled until the "Mount" script is successful, however, try as I may I cannot get this to work in my AppleScript. Is there anyone out there that can help?
SHARING MY APP
Once my App has been finished with the additions mentioned here I am more than happy to share it with anyone that wants to try it in a similar scenario. After a year of experimenting with different solutions and possibilities I thought this would be the most robust, cheapest and efficient way of using Mac's in our School infrastructure, it is also similar to how Mac's work independently within many Business Networks in Media/Design Offices.
If this is something you would be interested in for your School/Establishment let me know and it can be personalised to you with any logo you wish. Also the network locations would need to be changed but we can work those out together.
Thanks to sM3eshum from:
mr_moonface (13th March 2012)
15th April 2013, 04:16 PM #2
is this still going? it looks just like what im looking for?
15th April 2013, 04:24 PM #3
- Rep Power
This is indeed live and running - we are even on version 2 which now supports VPN Access from Home!
My software is now running on over 100 Mac's within the School and the Mac Server has been decommissioned as is no longer needed.
All the Mac's now have carefully crafted Guest Accounts on them, locked down App Access and a Modified "Finder" so they cant go browsing around the network.
Screen Shot 2013-04-15 at 15.20.47.png
Send me a Private Message with your Contact Details and we can discuss what sort of thing you are looking for and how I can help
11th June 2013, 11:24 AM #4
Hi I have just stumbled across this and was wondering what the deal is is this application available for download and is the locking down of the macs part of it?
11th June 2013, 12:00 PM #5
- Rep Power
This application and the processes and systems that support it has really take off as of late and we are beginning to bundle it into a package to make available for schools.
How it works is
The application has to be modified to cater for your network setup, (i.e what drives are available, IP Addresses of servers etc) and a bespoke version is compiled for your school. A demo version would be sent to the school which we would need you to test to ensure it works correctly.
A master image is then created for your Mac's including this software and all the software you have licences for, rigoursly tested and then given to you to deploy to your macs with full instructions on how to setup.
There is then an extra piece of software we give you (along with instructions on how to update the Mac's, software etc) This software would create a package that contains the changes you have made to the student account on a Master Mac that you could then duplicate changes to all the other Mac's you have on site.
11th June 2013, 12:25 PM #6
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