Tag Archive | "MAC"

Your office has microsoft workstations, your tech guy likes linux, your graphics guy uses a mac. How can you share files easily between the 3 different computer platforms?

While most small businesses operate solely on Microsoft Windows based computers or Mac computers, it’s not uncommon for a small business to have a combination of two or three of these. Perhaps your business has 5 to 10 or more Windows based PCs and one or two Macs used by your graphic or media artists. Or perhaps your boss has a Mac at home and wants to use one at work as well. You may even have one techie person in your company who loves Linux or is using a Linux based PC for a particular specialized application or project  or perhaps your tech guy absolutely hates Microsoft and and wants to stick with Linux.

How can your business share its files with these various computing platforms?

Here are some common ways to do this.

  • You can configure one or more of these different PCs to share files with the others.
  • You can install a Windows or Mac OS/X based server on your network and then configure it to support all three client operating systems or vice versa. In fact, all these operating systems support client PCs running other operating systems. However, configuring them takes a good amount of technical expertise and troubleshooting time. It’s no secret that Windows servers tend to favor Windows clients and Mac servers tend to favor Mac clients.

That’s why businesses looking to share files and printing among Macs, Windows, and Linux based PC’s often take the third option, which is Network Attached Storage (NAS).

NAS devices are simple way to add storage to your network and share files with many different types of clients. You simply plug a NAS device directly into the network, do some simple Web based configuration, and you are up and running in minutes.

If you’re working with mix of client operating systems on the network, you should make sure your NAS comes with built-in support for the following file sharing protocols:

Network File System (NFS), a file sharing protocol commonly familiar to Unix and Linux based PC’s.

Common Internet File System (CIFS), also known as Server Message Block, a file sharing protocol commonly used in Windows-based networks.

Bonjour, a protocol used by Mac OS/X computers to discover printers and other computers and their services on the network.

Apple FileProtocol (AFP), a file services protocol used by the Macintosh OS and OS X.

Many NAS products support most or all of these protocols, which makes it very easy to connect all of your Macs, Windows PCs, and Unix/Linux systems to share files and NAS attached printers. Very little configuration is needed. Easily, they all just work.

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