Networking Help

Posted by: OneTraveler

Networking Help - 09/17/03 05:30 AM

I'm looking for a little advice here. I've been put in charge of the remaining Mac lab at our local high school (works for me, the multimedia lab has been assured to remain mac due to availability of software and Macs strength in the I've got 6 G5's coming my way!). The problem is that the district techs will no longer be supplying me with server services so I will be setting one up in my own room. I will be purchasing the OS X server software (as I will be serving 30 machines), but from there I am a bit lost. At most, I have only networked a few macs....any suggestions on what I should purchase, how I should set up, things I need to think about would be greatly appreciated.<br>Thanks ALL!<br><br>
Posted by: DaddyMac

Re: Networking Help - 09/17/03 02:04 PM

I don't have much experience with this, but why not make one of the machines in the lab the server...?<br><br>I don't understand the part about the machine 'in your room' being the server..<br><br>
Posted by: rman

Re: Networking Help - 09/17/03 03:05 PM

Are you planning to place all of the data that is created on one system? Are you backing up all of the systems or is each individaul is responible for their own backup? Are you planning to be able to share files across Macs? There are a lot of questions to be asked I could go on.<br><br>I have setup many client/server environment, but no using the Apple platform. I worked with sgi, IBM, Sun, HP and some others, but the question remain the same.<br><br>
Posted by: squareman

Re: Networking Help - 09/17/03 04:25 PM

An indispensable resource for the lone Mac guy supporting his network in a Windows world is<br><br><pre>** Facts are expensive. Opinions are cheap. **</pre><p>
Posted by: hayesk

Re: Networking Help - 09/19/03 04:14 PM

Because, undoubtedly, some clown will try to restart the lab machine that is the server. If you remove restart privs from the user, one will eventually pull the plug.<br><br>That setup is good when you have a small number of savvy people. I wouldn't trust it in a high school when there will be a lot of different people using the machine.<br><br>
Posted by: hayesk

Re: Networking Help - 09/19/03 04:22 PM

Here's some advice:<br><br>WIll each student have an account? If so, you may want to get a couple of big drives and put them on the server, and have all of the users home directories hosted there. It'll make it easier to back up.<br><br>If you just plan on having a "lab_user" account, then make sure they are saving their work on the server when they are done. Maybe place aliases on their desktops to the server.<br><br>I can't stress this enough: Back up, back up, back up! Get a tape drive and back up often, and rotate the media. Use 5 or so tapes at a time, rotating them every day. Replace them after a while (I'm not sure how long), even if they still work. Do some backup *and* restore tests every so often.<br><br>Also, lock down everything! Don't let them do anything unless they require it. Test their account before you give it to them to make sure they can't change network or other hardware settings.<br> <br>If you will be giving multiple accounts (i.e. one per student), make a template account, set it up and test it, and use that to copy - it'll save a lot of time.<br><br>That's all I can think of for now. Good luck!<br><br><br>
Posted by: OneTraveler

Re: Networking Help - 09/22/03 05:40 AM

Thanks everyone for the input so far...I would have responded sooner, but it has been one heck of a week!<br><br>Right now, as I don't have a server, the lab is set up with a mix of OS 9 and X.2 (I have plaved a PO for a class lic. of X so that all machines will be up to date). Because of this, the OS 9 users just save to the HD and the X users logon as MMLab and save to the HD. NOT secure at all, but it works for now. <br><br>I think I would prefer for each student to have their own unique Home directory as opposed to a generic Lab_User, but how will this increase my difficulty to monitor student work? As Admin, I can't see what is in their home directory...and I need to be able to keep close reigns on a number of the students.<br><br>Or is it easier (better) to have a generic login with students doing manual saves to the server...?<br><br>While I am waiting for my OS X Server and documentation, I know little about running it. What is entailed saving the home directories on the server? Can I set a limit of size?<br><br><br><br>
Posted by: rman

Re: Networking Help - 09/22/03 03:18 PM

I have not looked at Mac OS X that closely, but here are some things that I do in create a client/server environment.<br><br>I create a server that has a large amount of disk space. This is where I create all of the end users home directories and accounts. I am the root user (super user) on this server so i can see all of the end users data (files). I turn on NIS (network information service) and NFS (network file systems) on all the clients and the server. I export the end users home direcotries from the servers. I mount the home directories on the clients. With NIS enable on the clients the end user should be able to log in using one pass word. Then the end user will be creating there data in one spot will makes i better to manage. <br><br>I have done this on many different favors of unix, but have not done this in Mac OS X yet. Most of the environment I have worked in done allow Apple comupters on the network (you know the myth, too much nosie on the network, ya right ). <br><br>I know NFS and NIS is a part of all favors of Unix, but I don't know where to access it in Mac OS X.<br><br>
Posted by: nutty

Re: Networking Help - 09/22/03 04:25 PM

yep, save them to the server with disk quotas. it's all simple and graphical to do so when you create a user under OSX server.<br><br>