In this screencast I also cover some of the basic server settings found in the server tab. These settings help you set up how you want to access your server remotely and I cover each of hose settings and what they do.
If you have any comments feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.
If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment here or on my Youtube Channel.
Overall the install process is pretty smooth but does take some time. One tip, when you hist less than a minute remaining you are looking at waiting more than a minute and in some cases could be 20 minutes or more so don’t stop the install if it seems to get stuck. Give it some time and should finish the install.
If you have any comments or questions leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.
With that in mind, I cover how to upgrade to Mavericks Server and walk through the entire process. The upgrade is pretty simple and goes rather smoothly with the exception of the issues mentioned above.
If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment here or on my Youtube Channel.
So I put Mavericks through its paces and I have to say the upgrade when as smooth as it could have gone with a couple of issues. One is not to believe the timer when it says you have less than a minute remaining. I found both times I saw that status it actually took from 30 to 40 minutes to complete. So that being the case, make sure you don’t stop the process thinking it is hanging just be patient and it will eventually finish the upgrade. Second, you will have to give permission to the apps that use keychain or contacts because of the changes Apple made in those areas. So expect to have to answer a bunch of pop ups once the process if complete.
Below is the screencast showing my upgrade process step by step. If you have any questions or want to leave a comment you can do so here or on my Youtube Channel.
1. Making sure your Mac qualifies for the update.
2. Checking your applications to make sure they are Mavericks compatible (go to www.roaringapps.com).
3. Check your hard drive and permissions using Disk Utility.
4. Make a bootable clone using SuperDuper! or Carbon Copy Cloner.
In this screencast I walk you through the steps to prepare for the upgrade. I walk through what to do to prepare so you will be ready when the upgrade comes out. As always feel free to leave a comment here or on my Youtube Channel.
Launch Center Pro is a productivity app that looks to limit the number of actions you need to take to get something done. Need to send a text out to a group of people but don’t want to put in the addresses to go through the steps? No problem! Tap once into Launch Center Pro and click on the action to send a text. You are taken right to an empty text field with all of the names of your group already addressed in the “to” line. Want to upload a photo to Dropbox, copy the link and send it in an email? No problem. with one tap all of those functions happen.
Launch Center Pro 2.0 really is an incredible app for iOS7 to improve your productivity. I have many people ask me to compare this app to Drafts which allows you to take action on snippets of text in a similar way. To me the difference is this, I use Drafts when I have text that needs to be acted on and Launch Center Pro for all other actions that take multiple taps to complete.
In this screencast I cover how to use Launch Center Pro 2.0 and walk you through many of its features. As always if you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.
In this screencast I walk through the process of setting Fingerprint ID up and how it works. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial I cover some of the things I discovered that helped improve the battery life of my new iPhone 5s. I go over each and every setting that seems to effect battery life so you can fine tune your own battery experience. It is always a trade off between features and the function of your battery so you don't have to use everything I cover here but as you fine tune your own settings you should hopefully get your battery to where you want it to be.
As always if you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.
It has been great to see the response to this video with a lot of different people picking it up including Allison Sheridan from the Nosilla Podcast which I listen to. I have had a few questions along the way with people wondering if it will mess up their jail break (yes it will) and wondering if they really need to back up (yes you should). If you have any questions feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.
Reflector allows you to mirror your iOS devices to your Mac using Airplay. Not only does Reflector do a great job of mirroring your iOS screen to your Mac, it also puts the device bezel around your screen and even lets you choose the color (white or black). This really works great for demonstrations because it allows the user to see the actual device instead of just looking at the screen and wondering what they are looking at until their eyes adjust.
Reflector also has the added feature of allowing you to mirror multiple devices at once. So if you are trying to demonstrate the interaction of one device to the other, you can show both devices on your screen and operate them independently at the same time and still capture both screens. This can really come in handy depending on what you are trying to demonstrate.
So in this screencast I demonstrate how Reflector works so you can get an idea of how I do my screencasts. Of course I record these screencasts with Screenflow, the best screen capture and editing software I have ever used. Someday I'll do some screencasts on how I do my screencasts which will feature Screenflow.
Feel Free to leave any comments or questions below or on my Youtube Channel.
In this screencast I walk you through the set up of Everpix. I also cover the web interface and walk you through the various options for viewing and sharing your photos. If you would like to try Everpix and would like an extra 6 months of photo viewing on the service you can use my link here (of course I get 6 months as well:Everpix Invite.
What I discovered was I was backing up 3 iOS devices which was taking up the majority of data mainly because of photos an videos that were being backed up. These things were causing the spike in my usage and I had to take care of that or may backups would cease. If you are in the same boat, I would recommend the following:
- Turn off backup for your camera roll.
- Remove any large files you may have added to iCloud by looking at the Apps section of iTunes.
- Use a program like PhoneView to move your videos and other files to your Mac and back them up there.
In this screencast I walk you through how to do each of the things above. As always if you have any comments or questions leave them here or on my YouTube Channel,
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to access your media remotely. I take a look specifically at the myPlex web interface and the iOS application. I also demonstrate how you can add media from around the web on the fly into your Plex interface so you can view it on your favorite media device. Plex really is an excellent media server and for a free application it really is incredible! If you want more features you should also consider the Plex Pass which is a paid subscription. For limited time they have a lifetime subscription which really looks like a steal with all the development they have been doing!
As always thanks for all your support! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them here or on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to edit the metadata for your media. I show examples of how Plex could get it wrong and what you need to do to make the changes and make sure those changes stay and don’t get updated again in the future.
As always, thanks for your support! If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them here or on my YouTube Channel.
Plex is a media server with a lot of the features most people want in a home media server. Plex combines Movies, Television, Music, Photos and Web services into one easy to use and set up application. Plex automatically pulls the metadata for your media and does a great job presenting it inside the Plex interface. The Plex Media Manager is a web based application so you can access it anywhere you internet access. Combine that with their applications and services for so many different devices and Plex really is a great media server for your content.
In this weeks tutorial I cover how to install and get Plex set up. Next week I’ll cover how to edit and tweak your Media. If you have any questions feel free to comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
In this weeks screencast I cover how to monitor the physical state of your server using an iOS application called iStat. iStat is a universal iPhone and iPad application that monitors everything from the heat sensors to the fan speed on your Mac. Check out this screencast to see how it works!
If you have any questions or suggestions feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
1. Hardware will fail at some point.
No matter how well you take care of your computer, hard drive and other electronics we all know that our hardware will fail at some point in the future. It is usually before we think it will happen so it surprises us, but we know it will take place. When it does fail, many times it fails beyond recovery, meaning all of you data could be lost forever.
2. A good backup strategy includes multiple copies
A good rule of thumb is, one copy is good, multiple copies is better. The more copies the more you minimize your risk of losing data.
3. Location of those back ups can be as important as how many backups you have.
You have to take into account the fact that having all your backups in one place means you have a single point of failure. If they are all at your home and get stolen or burned up or damaged by water or some other force of nature you have lost all of your data. If you have your data in multiple locations (at least one more besides your home) you still have your data even if you lose your local copy.
With this in mind, here is my strategy. First, I have a time machine back up of my data. This gives me an incremental back up just in case I accidentally delete something I want to get back. I can go back in time and get it with Time Machine. It also serves as one complete back up. Second, I use a Drobo as an external drive for those backups so if one hard drive fails my data is still safe. Next, I use SuperDuper! to make a bootable clone of my main drive so if that one fails I can boot from this backup and keep working as if nothing happened until I get an internal drive replacement. Finally, I back up to Backblaze online to handle my offsite back up. For things I really don’t want to use like family photos, etc. I back those up to another external drive that I store in a safe place.
With that in mind, I did this tutorial on Backblaze for offsite back up. Backblaze has been a great service that integrates well with the Mac and allows you to set it and forget it. It continually backs up in the background. Whatever strategy you use, be sure to keep all of these possibilities in mind (I’m sure I’ve forgotten some but at this point this is the extent of my own paranoia on the topic of backup.
Feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel!
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to change a local account to a network account and move the users local files over to the server to allow network access from any computer on your network.
As always if you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them here or on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your portable Mac to enable remote Time Machine backups. This allows your backups to happen over the internet back to your server and allows you to create your very own cloud back up strategy. A couple of things to keep in mind with this approach. First, this is not the complete back up solution. You are protected from hardware failure but if your house burns down you lose your back up. So you will need to consider other offsite back up. Second, this is not foolproof. Because of things like bandwidth and internet interference you could cause your back up to get corrupted if you have major interruptions. So just because it is possible I would caution you in using Time Machine this way. Like anything else your mileage may vary so I want to make sure I put in that warning to start!
As always feel free to leave a comment or question here or on my YouTube Channel.
To make this work you can use Mobile Accounts (which I covered in another screencast HERE) which will keep those home folders in sync between your server and the local portable Mac as a solution. Or you can have your users log into their network accounts over the internet and still have access to them. There are pros and cons to each solution with the obvious one being network and server bandwidth which directly impacts speed.
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your portable Mac to allow your users to connect to their network accounts over the internet. I also cover how to connect and log into their account through your Open Directory remotely.
As always, feel free to leave any comments or questions below or on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial I walk you through how to change your Host name. I also cover the services you will need to update once that change is done to make sure you don’t have any of your services break in the process.
As always feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
Little Snitch 3 provides a profile feature that allows you to have different sets of rules for different networks. So when I am at home there are one set of rules for home. When I am at a coffee shop, there is another set of rules and Little Snitch 3 keeps track of where I am and automatically switches to the rules I have defined for that spot. It really is a great feature because it does have a set it and forget it set up.
In this screencast I cover profiles and how to set those up in Little Snitch 3. As you will see, this really is a great feature set and one you will use a lot with your mobile Macs!
Little Snitch also gives you suggestions of rules you might want to implement and sets up temporary rules for you to look at and decide if you want to keep or discard them. It really is a great way to keep tabs on your entire network and set up a rule set that you are comfortable with.
One thing I always have to let people know about Little Snitch is the pop ups that warn you of connections can seem overwhelming at first. With every connection asking for your permission to accept or deny you really get a good sense for how many programs are trying to connect. But with all of those connections at first you can feel like the program is getting in your way. If you stick with it and go through all the pop ups and make decisions on what you want to allow and what you want to deny, over time these will become fewer and fewer and you will have the protection and limits to access that you wanted with very little hassle. So stick with it as this really is an incredibly useful tool!
Little Snitch provides a great solution to this problem. With it’s network filtering, it lets you see on a connection by connection basis who is trying to get into your computer from the outside and who is trying collect data from your computer from the inside. This network filtering puts you in control of each of these connections and even lets you set up rules for different locations or networks that you might connect to with your mobile Macs.
In this screencast, I give an overview of Little Snitch 3 focusing mainly on the network filter. I cover the basics of the application and all the features present in the network filter including how to get a reading of your current network and how to take snapshots in time to review later.
If you have a server, Little Snitch 3 is a great tool to help you keep tabs on your server and gives you a moment by moment opportunity to block those who may be trying to access your server.
The MacStadium team has been great and I really see the value in the products they have to offer. You can see more about MacStadium’s services at their website www.macstadium.com. If you do happen to decide to host your server, I there are various tutorials up on their blog, some of which I have been contributing on how to get your Mountain Lion Server up and running in a hosted environment.
In this screencast tutorial I give an overview of having your Mac Mini Server in a hosted environment. I cover the differences between a home hosted versus data center hosted server, some of the costs and benefits of a hosted server, and some of the basics of logging in and working with a server in a hosted environment.
As always feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel!
In this screencast tutorial I cover some advanced firewall administration for the built in PF Firewall using a donation ware software program called IceFloor. I cover how this software may be helpful for home users, how to set the software up, what settings to put in place, and ways to customize and test your firewall.
As always feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel if you need any help or have any questions.
In this screencast I cover how to connect to your files and folders remotely using SFTP. SFTP is more secure that FTP and is a great way to navigate remote file systems. I talk about how to set up SFTP, how to connect to your shares both through the terminal and through an app called Forklift. I also cover some basic commands to move files from one server to another.
As always if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them here or on my YouTube Channel.
In this tutorial I show you how to access your server remotely and how to copy files back and forth using terminal. In the next screencast I will cover how to do this using the more easy to use SFTP through a file management program called Forklift.
As always feee free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
As always, feel free to leave questions or comments below or on my YouTube Channel.
Some of the controls do take some getting used to but there is a handy guide to help explain how each of the services work. The latency is really good and it makes it a great tool for every server administrator to have. As always, if you have any questions feel free to leave them below or on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast I cover how to download, set up and use the application on your iPhone. This really is a great little app and should come in handy for helping you check in on your server. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave one below or on my YouTube Channel.
In this weeks tutorial I cover how to set up the built in firewall on OS X Server. I cover the basic set up and various options found in the GUI built into system preferences. In a future screencast I will cover how to run the server with the command line and a third party GUI called Icefloor.
As always if you have any questions feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
Here are some of the main changes:
1. Caching Service: This allows you to cache any updates that have been downloaded from the Mac App Store so they don’t need to be re-downloaded. I covered this in detail in a previous screencast.
2. Centralized SSL Certificate Management: Apple took the SSL Certificate management out of the Server hardware area and moved it to it’s own service. I cover the changes in detail for those who had difficulty with the new interface.
3. Time Machine: Changes include seeing which computers are backed up, when they were backed up, and the size of the back up.
As always feel free to leave comments here or on my YouTube Channel.
I have had a lot of feedback lately asking me to put all of my tutorials on my website in an easy to view format. Some of you don’t like using the YouTube interface and would prefer to come to the website instead to view the tutorials in one place. So to make it easier, I have added a section to my website on Technology which includes all the tutorials sorted by topic. It is a start and I still have things I want to do make it better but I think it will make it easier for you to view them in order instead of using the playlist feature on my YouTube Channel.
I also included a donate button for those who want to buy me a cup of coffee (Starbucks is one of my regular hang outs) for the work on the tutorials. Please don’t think you have to donate to use the tutorials, I am just doing this for those who wanted to do something but didn’t have a way to do it.
If you get a chance to check the tutorials section out, give me some feedback on what you think and how I could improve it. You can email me or leave a comment here.
I love doing these tutorials and helping others with things I have learned. I also love to hear how they help others so drop me a line if you get a chance.
To solve this problem, Server has the ability to set up mobile accounts where basically sets up a sync service that keeps your home folder in sync between the server and the client machine. Before a client leaves the network, the home folder syncs to the client machine. When the client comes back into the network, any changes the client has made get sync’ed back to the server to keep everything the same. This way the client can still log into any computer on your network and still take their laptop on the go.
As always, feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel. Thanks for watching!
Work Group Manager can still be used to manage all of your users, groups, devices and device groups in a non web interface on your server. It still works well and gives you another option for setting up your server.
As always feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel. Thanks for watching!
In this video tutorial I cover how to set that up properly. I also cover the process for binding your clients to the server and what it looks like in Work Group Manager.
As always feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel. Thanks for watching!
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to download and install Work Group Manager. I give a basic overview of the application and cover how to use it to work with users and groups on your server.
As always, thanks for watching. Feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel if you have a question.
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to connect to your server remotely. I demonstrate a couple of ways to do this and how to make sure you set it up properly without accidentally installing the server components on your non server device.
As always feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel. Thanks for watching!
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up a disk image to be used for your NetInstall. I also cover some of the customization options to simplify the install process and then show how the process works.
As always feel free to leave a comment or question here or on my YouTube Channel. Thanks for watching!
As always feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel. Thanks for watching!
In Mountain Lion Server you can specify certain folders to be available to your iOS device and then connect to those files through the WebDAV interface built into your iOS device. This makes all of your files portable and allows you to use them where you are at on the road (provided you have a public domain address or VPN).
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to connect to those files and folders you designated for sharing with iOS devices. I cover how to do this in a couple of apps to give you an idea of how it works. As always, please feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
As always, thanks for checking out my tutorials. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
While I'm there I'll have the opportunity to meet Don Mcallister who is making the trip from the UK. I have watched Don's screencasts from ScreenCastsOnline for many years and if you haven't heard of him or checked out ScreenCastsOnline and you own a Mac you really should check it out. You can get the screencasts as standalone tutorials or subscribe to the ScreenCastsOnline Monthly Magazine and view them in a magazine format with articles by leading Mac experts. I have had the privilege of collaborating with him lately with screencast content and it has been awesome working with and learning from Don. We are finally going to connect face to face.
I am also looking forward to attending the Omnifocus 2 unveiling party happening on Thursday night which will be presented by David Sparks, Merlin Mann, and Ken Case from the OmniGroup. It will be a lot of fun to check out the updates and be able to get early access to the private beta. I'll have to let you know how it looks! On Friday night I look forward to going to the Nosilla Castaways party on Friday night to meet Allison and some of the other podcasters I have heard but haven't met yet. Of course we'll also attend some of the workshops and roam the show floor. It should be a great trip!
I'll try to put updates on my twitter feed so if you are not following my on Twitter by sure to follow me @tolthoff. I'll also try to follow up with a blog post sometime next week.
In this screencast tutorial I go over how to set up the Wiki Service which functions along side the Website Service to create the built in Wiki Website. I also give a basic tour of the site to give you an idea of what you can do with it. In the next screencast I will cover how to customize your site to make it your own.
As always if you have any questions, feel free to comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
1. Does your ISP block port 80?
If your ISP blocks port 80 then you will not be able to host your own website as that is the port that those outside your network will use to access your site. You may have to call your ISP to see if there is a way to open that port. In many cases they will want you to purchase their business internet service which is usually more costly but does come with a static IP address which helps with the next issue.
2. Do you have a static IP address?
If you are using a dynamic IP address, which most home users are, you are leasing an IP address that could change at any moment. Once this IP address changes all of your web services will go offline until you discover the change and update your domain registrar to point your domain name to the new IP address. This will cause your website to be down until you make the change. Now most ISP's don't change the IP that often. It usually happens when you reboot your modem, but the risk of it changing might be too big, especially if you are dependent on having your website up and running 24/7. For home users who are only doing this for family it is not as critical, but for the rest, you really need a static IP.
3. Are you ok with Downtime?
Running a web server that hosts critical websites means that uptime of your sites is up to you and your server. So if you have a power outage and your server goes down, so does your website. If you forget you are hosting a site and turn off your server, you lose your site. So you really need to weigh the costs before you decide to do your own hosting.
Hopefully that gives you some things to consider before hosting your site. In the tutorial I cover how to get your site going and even how to set up virtual hosting if you are looking at hosting various domains/websites on your one server. This includes a look at the DNS service so if you haven't covered that yet, you may want to view my tutorial HERE.
Thanks for watching! If you have any comments or questions leave them here or on my Youtube Channel!
As always feel free to leave a comment or question here or on my Youtube Channel. Thanks for watching!
I cover each of the settings in both the User and Groups screens. I also share my own strategy of using groups to manage users instead of having to update each individual user’s profile one at a time. In the next screencast I will cover how to set up device specific profiles which is another great way to manage the settings on your network.
As always, if you have any questions feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel. Thanks for watching!
In this particular screencast I go over how to get your iOS device enrolled in Profile Manager so you can manage that device and push profile changes to it over the air. As I demonstrated in the previous screencast, you need to first install the trust profile if you are using a self signed SSL Certificate before you do any other installations. Forgetting this step will cause Profile Manager not to work and you will waste hours of tweaking for no benefit. After that profile is installed you can then install your other settings and make changes in Profile Manager itself that will be pushed to all your devices.
As always if you have any questions or feedback, feel free to leave a comment here or on my Youtube Channel. Thanks for watching.
If you haven’t had a chance to view my previous tutorial on setting up Profile Manager start with that tutorial first by clicking HERE. In this screencast tutorial, I continue my look at Profile Manager and walk through how to set up your Macs to use the service. I cover how to install the needed certificates to allow your Macs to be managed and cover how they look once enrolled within Profile Manager.
If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below or leave a comment on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to configure the Caching Service and set your clients to use that service instead of the Mac App Store. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel.
In Mountain Lion Server Apple has included a local Software Update Service that allows you to download all of Apples’ updates to your server and then point your clients to your server to download those updates. In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the Software Update Service and how to point your client computers to use your Server instead of Apple’s Servers to get their updates.
If you have any questions along the way, feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel.
As always if you have any questions feel free to leave a comment here or on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your own Mail Server. I go over the pros and cons of hosting your own email. I talk about the basic requirements of hosting your own server at home and how to set up your clients to use the service. As always if you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel.
In this screencast tutorial, I cover how to set up your own FTP share in Mountain Lion Server. I talk about how to log into your FTP share using Terminal and an FTP client.
As always if you have a question, feel free to leave a comment below or leave a comment on my YouTube Channel.
In the screencast tutorial below, I cover how to set up the VPN Service on Mountain Lion Server including how to set up the right range of addresses that won’t interfere with your regular DHCP range, which protocol to use (L2TP or PPTP), and ways in which you can export a profile to use to set up your client machines. I also cover setting up and connecting to your VPN Service remotely.
As always if you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel.
In this tutorial I cover how to set up the Messages Service and connect all your clients to the service. I also cover how to use the service and get your buddy list set up and running. If you have any questions along the way, feel free to leave a comment below or on my YouTube Channel.
As always, feel free to email any questions or leave a comment on my YouTube Channel.
If you have any comments or questions feel free to email or leave a comment on my YouTube Channel.
As always, if you have any comments or questions feel free to email, or comment on my YouTube Channel.
As always if you have any questions, feel free to email or leave a comment on my YouTube Channel.
In this tutorial I walk you through the steps of setting up the service which includes Apple’s Push Notification Certificate and SSL Certificates for secure connections between your server and your other devices. In future screencasts I will walk through each of the features available to manage and customize on your devices.
If you have any questions, feel free to email or comment on my YouTube Channel.
There are two ways to set up Open Directory in MLS. In this tutorial I walk through how to set up the service itself. It can also be set up by starting up Profile Manager, which checks to see if an Open Directory Master exists and if it doesn’t, then it walks you through the process of setting one up.
Let me know how you enjoy the screencast and feel free to email or leave a comment on my YouTube Channel if you have any questions or comments.
In this tutorial I cover how to set up your DNS and how to check to make sure your DNS is working properly. If you have any questions feel free to leave them here or reply on my Youtube Channel.
In this tutorial I cover how to set up a self signed SSL Certificate for Mountain Lion Server to allow you to have secure connections with your server. This is required if you are going to use Profile Manager and is recommended for things like Calendar, Address Book, Mail, etc. I also cover how to integrate a third party verified SSL Certificate and how to get that certificate added to your server.
As always if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.
If you haven’t checked out ScreenCastsOnline and you are an Apple Computer user I highly recommend checking Don’s tutorials out as they are very well done and a great way to learn new ways to use your Mac. Click the screenshot below to check out my guest spot and to get a feel for the great service Don has to offer. Thanks for using my screencast Don and making it look even better to boot!
In this screencast I cover which VPN protocol to choose, how to set an IP Range for your VPN Server, and how to install VPN manually on a client machine. I also show you how to connect to your VPN from a client computer and how to end your VPN session without having to use System Preferences. Enjoy!
When managing multiple users it can be time consuming if you have to make changes on a per account basis, so Lion Server has the ability to set up groups that allow you to make changes to the group that filters down to all the users in that group. That way you can set up groups for your kids or other groups that allows you to make those changes once that will affect everyone in that group.
In this screencast, I cover setting up users and groups in Lion Server. I cover how to determine the difference between a local and directory account, how to add new users and set the right permissions for services, and how to use groups to make changes once that affect all the users in the group. Building on this in Part 7, we will cover how to set up home accounts on the server.
In this tutorial, I cover how to set up Profile Manager. In the set up, Lion Server makes sure you have an Open Directory set up and your SSL Certificate in place (required for running Profile Manager). Open Directory allows you to manage global accounts and allows remote access as opposed to a local network directory which only allows local accounts. I am doing this tutorial early because Profile Manager sets up al the services required to run it without having to start each service separately. In a future screencast I will cover the web interface that is used to manage your devices and groups.
In most cases you want an SSL Certificate from a trusted third party registrar who vouches for the identity of your server. You would want this type of certificate if you were hosting a business or a server that a lot of people from the outside world would be accessing. Since we are talking about a home server, the only people accessing your server are people in your household so you really don’t need to buy a certificate you can generate one within the Server.app which is called a self-signed certificate. This certificate still keeps your information secure and works just like a purchased certificate. The difference is that you will get a message when logging in the first time saying that the certificate is not validated by a third party and to make sure you know who generated the certificate. Once you check allow you won’t have to answer that question again and everything works behind the scenes.
In this screencast, I show you how to set up one of these certificates and get it installed on your server.
If your router happens to be an Airport Extreme Base Station, you can have Server App manage your router for you, making sure all the necessary ports are open and allow access to the services you have configured. If you don’t have an Airport Extreme or would like to do your own port forwarding, you can do this in the software that came with your router. It will usually be referred to as NAT (Network Address Translation) and will have a section for you to add ports that you want to open up. For Lion Server, you can see a list of ports it uses for certain services HERE. Below is a tutorial I put together that explains port forwarding and how to do it both in the Airport Utility that comes with the Airport Extreme Base Station and through the Server App in Lion Server.
In this tutorial I walk you through the steps to assigning a static IP assigned to your server using an Airport Extreme Base Station. I also cover how to update the network settings on your server to make sure it is reading the right information. This is the second part of my home server tutorials and I’ll be following up with one on port mapping in the coming week.
In this tutorial I cover the changes from version 1.7 of MoneyWell to it’s 2.0 version. I also cover the basics of using this software to set up a budget using an event based system which makes it far more flexible than the old version and saves a lot of time manually calculating what goes into each bucket category. I like the new system and think you will as well.
MoneyWell is not just a digital ledger for your finances, though it does that very well. It is also an envelope system at the same time. MoneyWell uses the analogy of buckets that you fill with money instead of envelopes. You set a budget based on your spending for different categories and MoneyWell lets you know how well you are doing against that budgeted amount. So you can actually see where your money is going instead of lamenting after the money is already gone. I have used this software for a few years now and I have really grown to love it.
Recently the developer of MoneyWell, Kevin Hoctor, put out a new update which changed the interface quite a bit. It really made it nicer to look at and updated it to the new Lion/iOS look and feel. Many people got upset and felt it was completely different and there was some uproar over at the Mac App Store about it. In and effort to show how the program is similar to old one and some of the things that have changed, I did this screencast. Hopefully it will help people to decide whether to upgrade or not. Personally, I like the new interface and some of the changes that were made. There are some things I would like to get back, but over all it has been a good upgrade for me.
Still with all of the improvements, this is still a server package and as a result has some complexity to it over what you may be used to with your current client software. To help you through the process of setting up and installing a home server, I am doing a series of screencasts on Lion Server to walk you through the process. This tutorial includes thinking through hardware, setting up a domain name if you want to access your server from outside your home, initial installation, and setting up your host name. All of this is done from the perspective of adding Server to your existing lion install not a new computer set up.
Slink is a remote computer management program that is simple to use. You install the main management component on your computer. Then you install a small preference pane program on each of the computers you want to manage. You only pay for the management component which is currently $19.99 US in the Mac App Store. Once this is all set up, you add your relatives computers to your computer list and connect to those computers with a unique code that each has. Once you have those computers added, you only have to click the computer you want to connect with from a menubar drop down, plug in their password, and you are all set. The cool thing is it sets your computer up as if you are on the local network of the computer you are trying to help. That way you can share the screen and connect to any of the bonjour services that your relative may have running on their computer, including iTunes home sharing and iPhoto sharing.
It really is a neat package. I did a screen cast walkthrough on it which you can view below. The developer Olof is a really great guy and offers excellent support. If you are the IT department for your family you will find this tool indispensable!
You can also follow all my screencasts at my Youtube Channel. Enjoy!
You can also follow all my screencasts at my Youtube Channel. Enjoy!
To help him see how to back up two drives to one, I put together a podcast to walk him through the process. The basic instructions on how to do this can be found in the manual for SuperDuper! found HERE. Enjoy!
How to Set Up iCloud: http://www.apple.com/icloud/setup/
MobileMe Move Site: http://mobileme.com/move
In my search for the perfect solution I was chatting with a guy at my local Starbucks who said he had made the move to a VOIP phone company called Ooma. I decided to check it out and I am glad I did. Ooma is basically a voice over internet phone which means that it plugs into your existing internet connection and routes phone calls over the internet. So it is basically piggy backing off of your internet connection and therefore saves you from having to pay for phone calls (with the exception of international calls). Since many of us are paying for our broadband internet anyway this is a great way to leverage what you already have to get free phone service.
To get started with Ooma you need to buy an Ooma box. This box looks like any other phone machine and, in fact, includes a phone machine function. You plug the box into your router and then plug your existing phones into the Ooma box. Depending on the phones you have in your house you can use either wireless phones by plugging the main base station into the Ooma box and having that base station give the signal to the other wireless phones without having to plug into the wall. Or you can plug the Ooma into the wall and get smaller Ooma base stations, called Scouts or Telos, that you then plug into your phone sockets to allow for multiple phones in the house. I personally use a Panasonic wireless phone system with the main base station plugged into the Ooma with the other panasonic phones and chargers plugged in at various places in the house.
You have access to your voicemail messages either from the Ooma box, from your phone if it has that feature, through the Ooma website, and you can even have Ooma text you when you have a phone message at home or pay $9.99 a month for a service that will transcribe your message to text and text or email it to you. On the website you can view your phone messages visually instead of going through them one at a time in a row, save messages, and organize them into folders. You can also see who has called in and who you have called and have a running record of phone numbers. There is a contact list you can add and with Premier you can add numbers to the global Blacklist that is constantly updated by other Ooma users. The web interface is a nice way to have your home phone and messages easily accessible while on the road.
Now my biggest concern about Ooma was the voice quality. I have used other VOIP services and found that the voice quality was poor making me sound like I was in a tin can or had a lot of popping noises in the background. With Ooma I have been amazed at how good the phone quality has been. I have had friends and family tell me it sounded really good and I have not had any of the problems I have experienced with other VOIP services. It is really amazing how good the service is.
It Really is Free(or Really Cheap)
Now I know many of you are wondering, Is it really free after you buy the box? What’s the catch? Well that depends on how you use the service and what box you choose to get. If you get the older Ooma Hub and Scout combination than your service is completely free anywhere in the United States (you have to pay for international calls but the prices are quite good). If you get the newer Ooma Telo units you have to pay your monthly local taxes which are usually around $3-$5. I have the Ooma Hub and Scout and feel like I am not missing much with not having the Telo unit which includes HD voice, bluetooth connectivity for using your cell phone or wireless headset, and the ability to integrate your google voice account. The choice is yours but compared to what I was paying before the monthly taxes make this a huge bargain. So with me having the Hub and Scout combo I got my Ooma unit on sale for $180 and because I had wireless phones I sold the scout unit to the guy in the coffee shop for $50 which means I paid $130 out the door for free phone service for life. So in 3 months I had basically paid for the unit and have been enjoying free home phone service for the past year. If you are in the market for a home phone and are tired of having to look over a phone bill or cut your long distance calls short for fear of what your bill will look like, I would definitely consider Ooma. You won’t be sorry.
When you first start up Turbo Tax it asks if you want to import data from your previous year’s taxes. Since I had my 2009 Turbo Tax file on my computer the program found it and began to import it. Once it had finished the import and recent software updates it took me to the Personal Information Screen and there was all my personal data just as I had entered it last year including social security numbers. I love the fact that I did not need to look anything up to have to fill out the same information again. It was all imported for me.
The Easy Wizard
From there Turbo Tax walks you through a series of questions that help you to determine what your income figures and deductions are. I love the fact that everything I had put in last year was already filled in for me. I just had to update my W2 forms and the actual numbers I received from all my financial institutions and figures from my wife’s home business. Everything was right there and the process was smooth.
Once you have put all your information in, the program checks to make sure nothing is missing or out of place. If it finds something that you are missing it comes back asking you questions to help you finish putting in anything my may have missed. If you get stuck and are not sure if you should fill in that information or want to know where it is on the form you can simply click the form button on the top left of the window and you are taken to a screen that shows all the forms that will be used on the left and an actual editable form on the right. Any form that is missing information has a red exclamation point next to it. Once you update that information the red exclamation point goes away letting you know you are all set. This adds confidence as you know the system is checking all the bases.
The state filing was also very well put together and up to date. Everything from my Federal Tax form was transferred to my state form so I had very little to input. I live in a state that requires you to pay taxes on purchases you made out of state or on the internet. Turbo Tax had that information available for input complete with each counties tax rate making it easy to input. The same error correction that is available on the Federal tax portion was available for the state portion as well.
Print & E-File
When you are all done with your tax preparation you are asked if you are ready to file your taxes. Before you file you have the opportunity to review and print the actual tax forms. I usually save the files as pdf’s so have them with all of my other forms electronically. You are then asked if you want to e-file or mail your forms in. I choose e-file due to speed of my return. The E-file information is pre-filled out from last year including my bank information and how I paid for the state e-file last year. So all I had to do was confirm the information and send it off. The beauty of Turbo Tax is the fact that they update you every step of the process. You get an email telling you your returns were filed. You also get emails telling you the government accepted your return and have in their possession. You can then check where your return is in the process all the way to the point where your check is mailed. Pretty cool stuff!
Overall I am pleased with my experience with Turbo Tax. The ability to do my taxes myself in a couple of hours for a fraction of the price I was paying an accountant makes it a great deal. The software does a good job covering all the bases including my tax status as a Minister which has it’s own set of complexities. I would highly recommend it if you have a pretty straight forward tax situation and are tired of paying an accountant.
Dual Pane File Browsing
Tabs & Bookmarks
File List Sorting and Filtering
Command Line Tools
Quick Look Support
There are other ways to customize the look and feel of Pathfinder as well. There is:
Dual Pane View
Cover flow View
A Mix of Both Dual Pane and Coverflow
Pathfinder as Finder Replacement
Built into Pathfinder is the ability to replace most of Finder’s functions with Pathfinder. So when you open a folder it will bring up a Pathfinder window. Finder will still be running in the background because of the way it is built into the operating system but for everyday use Pathfinder will be the primary window that will be launched. To set this up, you go to the Pathfinder drop down menu and select “Show Pathfinder Desktop.”
Using Pathfinder with Hyperspaces
Now using both Pathfinder and Hyperspaces together causes some issues with which program gets priority on the desktop. To make these two programs work together do the following:
1. show the pathfinder desktop (path finder>Show Path Finder Desktop) 2. Bring the desktop forward (click on it and make sure it is the front most item). 3. Open the view option palette (view>Show view option or command J): you should see "show desktop options" at the top. 4. Click on the "set colors.." button, select Desktop in the drop down menu, and make sure that "show desktop background" is NOT checked. 5. Now you'll need to deactivate the Apple Finder's Desktop. In Path Finder, open (Pathfinder>Preferences) and switch to "General". Uncheck "hide Finder's Desktop" and relaunch the finder when asked (here I made sure "hide Finder's Desktop" was checked).
How it Works
When I turn on my Macbook Pro to do some work I go to each space to bring up the programs I want to use. So I will open my mail app in the Communications space, a Safari window in the Internet space, iTunes in the Audio space, etc. Then when I want to see my email I just click on the mail icon in the dock and it whisks me away to the Communications space and brings up the corresponding dock with all of my communications apps in the dock. Or, when I decide I need to look something up on the internet, I click on the Safari icon in my dock and it takes me to the internet space. This allows me to have full use of all of my spaces without having to juggle too many windows in one space. It also works seamlessly with another favorite app of mine Pathfinder. I can have the Pathfinder desktop activated and still have these multiple spaces and docks working.
How to Set It Up
To set all of this up, get a copy of Hyperspaces and install it. Then:
- Click the preferences pane.
- Click on the Spaces Icon.
- Decide how many spaces you want and add the columns and rows by clicking the plus button on the right.
- Label your space in the space name field.
- Click on the Label icon and if you want the name of the space on your desktop, check the box next to the On the Desktop line.
- On the Desktop diagram at the bottom, click where on the desktop you want the label to appear.
- Next, click the image button then click the magnifying glass to upload any image you want for that desktop. I usually choose “Fill Screen” for my scaling option.
- Repeat this for each space you want to set up.
To set up a dock for each space, get a copy of DockSpaces and install it. Then:
- Label the dock to be the same name as the space you want it to go to (this will simplify knowing which dock goes with what space).
- Add or remove any applications you want on that dock for that space.
- Repeat for each space you have.
- Click the Setup button and indicate how many rows and columns you have for your spaces. This will cause Dock Spaces to associate your docks with each space.
Now try clicking through your spaces and watch how the docks change for each space. It really works great and has made using my Macbook Pro an awesome experience. Enjoy!
Online Back Ups
Local Back Ups
So that is my new backup strategy. I will write an update at some point to let you know how I like it but for right now I have a better back up strategy than I have ever had. My MacPro is handled and my laptop backs up wirelessly to an Aiport drive I have hooked up to my Airport Extreme. Now I can start the new year with confidence that I at least can get to my data if I need it. Next on the list is a ultra portable drive to do a clone of my laptop drive!
1. Reformat the Hard Drive
I took the 250GB drive I had connected to the Airport Extreme and attached it to my Macpro directly, Using Disk Utility I erased the drive and made sure it was Mac Os Extended (Journaled). If you want to set up partitions you can do so at the same time on the partition tab.
2. Plug the Drive Back Into the Airport Extreme and Mount it
Next I plugged the drive back into the Airport Extreme only, powered it up and waited for the Airport Extreme to show up in the shared section of the sidebar in the Finder. Once it showed up I clicked on it to mount it (if you have a password you will have to put in your password to get it to mount).
3. Add the Airdisk to the Devices Section of the Finder
Once the drive is mounted you have at make sure it shows up in the devices section of the Finder. Just click on the folder for your Airdisk drive and drag it to the Devices section. Once you do that it will show the drive with a new icon in the devices section. This will allow Time Machine to see the drive.
4. Make sure the Airdisk Shows up as a Device Every Time You Login
To make sure the airdisk always shows up when you login, go to System Preferences and click on Accounts. Once in Accounts (you may need to push the lock button in the bottom left corner and give your system login to unlock your preferences) click the tab that says login items. On the list that comes up, click the “+” sign in the bottom left of that window to add an item. Browse to the Airdisk you just added to devices and click add. You will now see it on the list of login items. Make sure the box next to it is checked so that you will automatically mount the Airdisk on login.
5. Set the Airdisk as your Time Machine Backup
Now go to System Preferences and click on the Time Machine Icon. On the Time Machine screen click Change Disk. You should now see your Airdisk in the list of available Time Machine Volumes. Select the Airdisk. Now Turn Time Machine on if you haven’t already and it will begin to prepare the disk for back up! Remember this will take a long time as you are doing the initial back up of your entire hard drive over the air. It took me 14 hours to back up 116GB of data. You may want to set your Energy Saver settings to not let your computer sleep while the backup is going on (System Preferences-Energy Saver-Set the time to sleep to never).