PLEX: Media Prep & Install

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This week I decided to start a series on PLEX. PLEX is an application that works as a home media server. It takes all of your movies, TV shows, home movies, music, photos and other online media and pulls all of the metadata and presents them in an easy to use interface that is available not only at home but on all of your media devices. PLEX is available on Mac, PC's, iOS, Android, Apple TV, Roku, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and on many smart TV's. Just about anywhere you can think of you can access your media through PLEX. It really is an incredible app that solves most of the problems people have with accessing their media whenever and wherever they want.

In this screencast I show you how to prepare your media to be accessed by PLEX so that it can accurately read the file names and then apply the right metadata. I also walk you through the initial sign up and install of the PLEX Media Server which needs to run on your Mac for all of your media to accessible through all of the PLEX apps. This will the first in an in depth series on PLEX where I plan to cover all of the features and walk you through how to get started.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them her on my blog or on my YouTube Channel.



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OS X Server: Dynamic DNS Set Up

OS X Server
One of the questions I have received from many viewers is what to do with Dynamic DNS. When you host a server you really need a reliable public ip address if you are ever to access your server remotely. Typically you have a static ip address that never changes and you create records at your domain provider for your address (i.e. example.com) that point to the public ip of your server. That works great for servers when you have a static ip that never changes, but what happens when you have a dynamic ip?

For those who are home users who don't have a business tier, their public ip is leased to them for a period of time. Then when something happens like a reboot of the modem or a random update at their ISP, their public ip changes and then they are stuck unable to access their server until the are able to get home, figure out what the new public ip is and then make the change at their domain provider to get everything up and running again. This leads to being locked out of the server and causes problems.

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There are a few services that provide updaters that run and update your ip address on a regular basis so they can keep your domain updated with your most current ip. This works great but then there is the confusion on how to set this up at the server level. So to help those of you with dynamic ip address get started and still run OS X Server, I decided to put together this tutorial. In this screencast I cover two types of services. The first, Dyndns provides a domain name that they let you set up and then provide services to allow remote access. There is a charge for this service and then they don't let you choose your own domain ending without paying an additional fee for hosted services.

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The second service by Namecheap, allows you to use any registered domain to handle updating your DNS and this service is free. Namecheap states they do this because they feel you will like their service and move your domain to them. It is a great service that does an excellent job of keeping things up to date and the best part is it's free and you can use your own domain name.

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I also cover a couple of apps you can run on your Mac that keeps your ip up to date with these services with IPMonitor being one of the best and easiest to set up for any of the services. I hope you enjoy this screencast and I will look at doing more on Dynamic DNS with things like mail and web hosting which normally isn't available as cleanly as it is when you have a static ip.

If you need any help with your own set up feel free to email me. I do server consulting and would love to help!



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El Capitan Server Part 36: Xcode

OS X Server
In this screencast tutorial I cover a new service to OS X Server and that's the Xcode Server. I cover how to set up the service, get enrolled in the developer program, set up bots to test your code, and setting up and managing git repositories. Since I am not a coder I don't go into detail on each but just walk you through how to set it up and get it running.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 35: NetInstall

OS X Server
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the NetInstall service in OS X Server. I cover how to create a disk image, how to customize the image to fit your needs, and how to set up and use the service once you have everything configured.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 34: DHCP

OS X Server
In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the DHCP service in OS X Server. I cover pros and cons of using OS X Server's DHCP service as compared to a router. I also cover how to set up an Airport Extreme Base Station to work with server's DHCP service, walk you through all of the settings in the DHCP service, and cover how to set up static IP reservations for the clients on your network.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 33: Wiki

OS X Server
In this screencast tutorial I cover the wiki service built into OS X Server. I walk through the set up of your wiki webpage. Then I walk through the various screens and options found on the wiki website and give you an idea of how you might use this in your own server set up.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you found this screencast helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks so much for all of your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 32: FTP

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the FTP service in OS X Server. The FTP service is not as secure as using SFTP but it can still work to transfer non critical files if you need a quick set up. I cover how to set the service up, open the appropriate ports for remote access (20, 21), and how to access those shares using the terminal and an FTP client.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you found this screencast helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks so much for all of your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 31: Profile Manager Devices

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In this screencast tutorial I go over the Profile Manager Interface for managing devices and device groups. I cover each of the settings you can use to manage your devices and groups and walk through what each setting does. I also cover some basic strategies on when it is best to use groups to manage your settings instead of managing them on a per device basis.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you found this screencast helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks so much for all of your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 30: Profile Manager Users & Groups

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In this screencast tutorial I go over the Profile Manager Interface for managing users and groups. I cover each of the settings you can use to manage your users and groups and walk through what each setting does. I also cover some basic strategies on when it is best to use groups to manage your settings instead of managing them on a per user basis.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you found this screencast helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks so much for all of your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 29: Profile Manager Overview

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In this screencast tutorial I go over the Profile Manager Interface. I cover each of the tabs in the interface and explain what each section does. I then go through the restrictions and other settings you can use to fine tune your profiles and how they interact with your users and devices.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you found this screencast helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks so much for all of your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 28: Profile Manager iOS Enrollment

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your iOS devices to be managed by Profile Manager. By enrolling your devices you include them in your Open Directory and allow for remote management and installation of settings through profiles pushed to your iOS Devices by the Profile Manager Service.

I cover how to install the certificates including the order of installation and what you can do with your iOS Device from the my devices portal.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like personal help in setting up your server, feel free to contact me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find these tutorials helpful please like, favorite and/or share them so others can find them.



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El Capitan Server Part 27: Profile Manager Mac Enrollment

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your Mac devices to be managed by Profile Manager. By enrolling your devices you include them in your Open Directory and allow for remote management and installation of settings through profiles pushed to your Macs by the Profile Manager Service.

In this screencast I cover how to install the certificates including the order of installation and what you can do with your Mac from the my devices portal.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like personal help in setting up your server, feel free to contact me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find these tutorials helpful please like, favorite and/or share them so others can find them.



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El Capitan Server Part 26: Profile Manager Set Up

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the Profile Manager service. I walk through each of the steps and requirements for getting started with Profile Manager. In future screencasts I will walk you through the complete set up of all of the Profile Manager components.

As always thanks for watching. If you found this video helpful please like, favorite and share it with others.

If you have any questions feel free to leave them below.



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El Capitan Server Part 25: Websites

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In this screencast tutorial I cover the websites service built into OS X Server. I cover somethings to consider when looking at hosting your own website. I also cover using the built in server website and how to configure OS X Server to host your own website including DNS and the proper settings for your website.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you found this screencast helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks so much for all of your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 24: Mail

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the Mail Service in OS X Server. I cover the various options for setting up email, how to set up email for a home user including things to consider before running a mail server, how to set up the appropriate records at your domain registrar, and each of the settings available in OS X Server's mail service.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.

Thanks for watching!



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El Capitan Server Part 23: Messages

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your own Messages service in OS X Server. I cover how to configure the service to host your own private chat server. I also cover some fixes that you may need to do through the terminal to get the Messages Service working for you and then show you how to configure your client to make it work.

As always, thanks for watching! If you enjoyed the tutorial please like, favorite and share its others can find it.



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El Capitan Server Part 22: Calendars

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the Calendar Service in El Capitan Server. I cover all of the settings, how to set up locations and resources, how to add events and invite users, and the difference between individual and shared calendars.

As always thanks for watching. If you have any questions feel free to leave them below.

If you found this screencast helpful, please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. Thanks for all your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 21: Contacts

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the Contacts Service in El Capitan Server. I cover how to set up and start the service, how to add the service to your clients, how to search your directory on the server, and how to have a shared contacts account for all your users.

As always thanks for your support. If you have any questions feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to answer your questions.

If you find this tutorial helpful, please like, favorite or share this tutorials so others on the internet can find it. Thanks for all your supportHappy.



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El Capitan Server Part 20: Caching Server

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the Caching Service in OS X Server. The caching service allows you to cache any updates or downloads from the Mac, iOS, or iBook stores on your server and have users on your local network get their updates from your server instead of downloading another copy which saves time and bandwidth on your network. In this tutorial I cover each of the settings and demonstrate how it works.

If you find this tutorial helpful please like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.

Thanks for watching!



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El Capitan Server Part 19: Software Update

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In this screencast tutorial, I cover how to set up the built in Software Update Service. Software Update has been Apple's way of issuing updates to Macs, especially prior to the Mac App Store. Built into OS X Server is a Software Update Service that allows you to cache updates so your users download them from your server instead of Apple which limits the bandwidth needed for each user to download their own update. In this screencast I show you how to set up the service and some tips on how to customize it to fit your environment.

As you are deciding how to implement updates you may also want to take a look at the screencast I will be doing next week on the Caching Service as there is overlap between these two services and you may find that the Caching Service may be a better fit in meeting your needs for storing updates on your server. I will cover the pros and cons of each in the next screencast.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave a comment here or on my Youtube Channel.

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El Capitan Server Part 18: VPN

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Security is something many people are worried about lately. With exploits and hacks that have been created to steal our data, we all have to be concerned about protecting the typically ways that people can gain access to our computers. One way someone could hack your computer is through own wifi hotspots that are not secured. One way to protect yourself in coffee shops or airports where these hotspots are used is to use a VPN service to encrypt your communications back and forth on the internet.

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network and it basically logs you into your home server and then encrypts you communications and routes them through your home network. This keeps hackers from being able to read what you are sending back and forth over the internet. Another benefit of using a VPN is the ability to connect to your home server remotely without the need of purchasing a host name. The beauty of using OS X Server instead of paying for a VPN service is that it only costs $19.99 with no other fees.

In the screencast I cover how to set up the VPN service in OS X Server. I also cover how to set up your devices to use the service.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 17: Time Machine

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One of the benefits of running OS X Server is setting up a centralized back up workflow that allows your users to back up their machines to one drive on your network. Since most users have a difficult time remembering to back up their machines by plugging in their external drives and running Time Machine, it is important to find a set-it-and-forget-it solution to back ups. Built into OS X Server is a Time Machine Service that allows your users to back up to a centralized drive on your server that you select and they can do so wirelessly. This allows Time Machine to run on each computer automatically as if you had a dedicated drive connected to their computer. So without doing a thing all of your back ups take place on a regular basis and each is placed in a backups folder on the drive you select for back ups. It really is a great solution and works like a Time Capsule without having to worry about drive space since you can replace an external drive easier than the drive in a Time Capsule.

In this screencast I cover how to set up the Time Machine Service. I also cover how to connect your users to the back up, set a limit on the size of each back up, and how to monitor your back ups to make sure they are working properly. As always, feel free to leave a comment here or on my
Youtube Channel.



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El Capitan Server Part 16: Connect to File Shares-iOS

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to connect to your file shares on iOS devices. I cover the new iOS share feature in OS X Server and how to set it up. I also cover how to connect to the new iOS sharing feature and how to connect using the old WebDAV standard.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.



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El Capitan Server Part 15: Connect to File Shares-Mac

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to connect to the file shares we set up in the previous screencast. I cover how to connect on a remote machine, how to add that share to your login items so it auto mounts each time you reboot, and how to monitor and disconnect those who are mounted to the shares on your server.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.



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Fixing OS X Webdav Connection Issue OS X Server 5

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Recently I've had a few people contact me with issues connecting to their Webdav shares on their iOS devices since upgrading to OS X Server 5. In doing some research and working with one of my listeners I was able to find a solution that seemed to work for him and might work for you as well. It involves updating a coupe of files and forcing authenticated binding for Webdav. You can see the details in this Apple Support Article: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202271 or just watch the screencast below.

If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment here or on my Youtube Channel. If you find other fixes for issues you may be having with Server and would like to share them, please leave a comment here or email me.



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Talking PLEX on Mac Power Users

Mac Power Users
I had the privilege of being on the Mac Power Users show this week to talk about one of my favorite Media Server Applications: PLEX. PLEX is a media player that allows you to share your media across all of your devices. What makes PLEX unique is that it will take just about any media you throw at it and it will find all of the metadata for that media and display it in a beautiful interface that is available across many different platforms including Macs, PC's, iOS, Android, Windows, Xbox, Playstation, televisions, etc. It really is a great way to have your media everywhere. Not only does it make all of this something that is easy to do, it also will transcode the media on the fly so it is available in the formate each device needs with very little buffering.

It was a lot of fun talking with my friends David Sparks (http://macsparky.com) and Katie Floyd (http://katiefloyd.com) about how PLEX works and some ways each of us uses PLEX. If you have never tuned into Mac Power Users I would highly recommend giving it a shot and listening in every week. David and Katie have a great way of talking tech in a practical way that also gives some great tips on ways to get the most out of your technology.

You can listen to the show on PLEX HERE.

You can subscribe to Mac Power Users HERE.

If you have any questions on PLEX feel free to leave a comment below. You can also view my series of tutorials on PLEX on my Youtube Channel. I am in the process of doing an update to the screencasts I did back in 2013.

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El Capitan Server Part 14: File Permissions

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One of the questions I have gotten a lot lately is how to deal with permissions and file shares. It can get confusing when trying to figure out how to set up customized folder and file access especially when you are nesting folders. OS X includes both the POSIX (Portable Operating System Interface for Unix) and ACL (Access Control Lists). POSIX has three basic permissions settings and ACL's have many options. Which one to use when and where is what can get confusing.

In this screencast tutorial I cover how to work with file permissions in OS X Server. I walk through defining POSIX and ACL permissions and how they work. I then go through each of the permissions available to set in the OS X Server interface and some basic best practices for setting up your permissions.

As always thanks for watching. If you have any questions feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to answer them.



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El Capitan Server Part 13: File Sharing

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the File Sharing Service on OS X Server. I cover how file sharing works, how to specify how you want to share your files, and who has permission to do what with those files and folders. I also cover how to set up home folders on the server so users can sign into any computer on your network and have their own home folders and desktop show. Then I cover the basics of POSIX and ACL’s and where to make those changes in OS X Server.

As always thanks for watching. If you have any questions feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to answer them.




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El Capitan Server Part 12: Bind Clients to the Server

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To get your network accounts to work on your server, you will need to bind your Macs that will need to take advantage of these accounts bound to your server. Binding a Mac to your server makes that Mac listed as a device that can then use the user data found in your Open Directory. It allows users to log into that Mac using their network accounts as they then become an option at the login screen.

In this screencast tutorial I cover how to bind a Mac to your server. I walk through the settings you need to make sure are in place on your server to allow for an authenticated bind. Then I walk through the actual binding process and show what to put in each field to make the bind work.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.



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El Capitan Server Part 11: Users & Groups

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the users and groups accounts on your server. I cover the difference between local and local network users, how to set up a new user, and the various settings for users and groups such as global password policies and access to services.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.



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El Capitan Server Part 10: Open Directory

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If you are running a server you will probably want to manage various user accounts to allow users on your network access to the services you are running on your server. You may also want to manage the various devices you have on your network to make setting them up more convenient. To do this, you will need to set up an Open Directory Master which is basically a database that holds all of your users, groups, and device data.

In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up an Open Directory for your OS X Server. I cover why you might want to set up an Open Directory, how to set up an OD for the first time, how to back up your OD, and the difference between network and local accounts.

As always thanks for watching. If you find this tutorial helpful please like, favorite, and share it so others can find it on the internet. Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions and I'll do my best to answer it.



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El Capitan Server Part 9: SSL Certificates

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In this screencast tutorial I cover the Certificates Service built into OS X Server. I cover what SSL certificates do, the differences between self-signed & verified certificates, how to secure your services with SSL, the different types of certificates you can create in OS X Server, and how to purchase and set up a third party verified SSL certificate.

As always thanks for watching. If you find this tutorial helpful please like, favorite, and share it so others can find it on the internet. Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions and I'll do my best to answer it.



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El Capitan Server Part 8: DNS

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the DNS service in OS X Server 5. I cover how DNS works, what each of the DNS records do, walk through two ways to set up your DNS, and cover how to test your DNS to make sure it is working properly.

As always thanks for all of your support! If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 7: Port Forwarding

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up port forwarding on OS X Server. I cover the basics of port forwarding and how it works on your network. I also cover how to set up and use port forwarding with the built in service with OS X Server and how to do it manually if you don’t have an Apple Router.

As always thanks for all of your support! If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 6: Network Configuration

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In this screencast tutorial I cover the basics of setting up some of your network settings to work with OS X Server. I cover router considerations, how to set up a static DHCP reservation for your server, & how to check to make sure that reservations shows up in the right DNS fields to allow your server to function properly on your network.

As always thanks for all of your support! If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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El Capitan Server Part 5: Install & Set Up

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In this screencast tutorial I do a walk through of the install and initial set up of your server. I show you what the install process looks like from downloading the app from the App Store to launching it for the first time. I then cover the initial set up of your host name, computer name, the reachability service, settings, storage, and access tabs. You should be all set with your initial install by walking through the steps I cover in this tutorial.

As always thanks for your support. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.



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Getting Started with iPhone Series

I wanted to share with you a project I have been working on over at Curious.com on Getting Started With Your iPhone. If you are new to the iPhone or just want to get up to date on the various features found on the iPhone this course might be of help to you or a family member. You can view the video by clicking the image below.

Getting Started with Your iPhone | Curious.com


Thanks again so much for watching! I am very thankful to be a part of an incredible community!

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El Capitan Server Part 4: Complete Server Uninstall

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to completely uninstall server in case you need to start over due to upgrade issues or just wanting to start over. I walk through all of the steps to wiping all of the server components from your Mac so you can start over. As always I recommend a back up just in case you delete something you shouldn’t by accident.


Thanks so much for all of your support. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below.


If you find this screencast helpful, please like, favorite, or share it so others can find it on the internet.





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El Capitan Server Part 3: Clean Install OS X

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In this screencast I cover how to do a clean install of OS X El Capitan. I cover how to prepare a USB Installer, how to wipe your hard drive using the new disk utility and walk you through the clean install step by step.

As always thanks for watching. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below. If you find the video helpful please like, favorite and share it so others on the internet can find it. Thanks!





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El Capitan Server Part 2: Server Upgrade

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In this screencast tutorial I walk you through the upgrade to OS X Server version 5.0. This version is the first version that does not require you to have the latest Mac OS so you can use it with Yosemite or El Capitan. It is also the first upgrade that is free if you have previously purchased it.

If you already have your server up and running as you like it and your server is mission critical then I would either wait to upgrade to see what issues might come up or make sure you follow the steps in my Preparing for the Upgrade to Server 5.0 screencast.

As always thanks for watching and for all of your support! If you find this video helpful please like, favorite, and share it so others on the internet can find it.

If you have any questions or would like to inquire about having me consult on setting up your own server please feel free to leave a comment.



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El Capitan Server Part 1: Preparing to Upgrade

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In this screencast tutorial I cover the steps to take to prepare yourself for the OS X Server 5 upgrade. Apple has already released version 5 on the Mac App Store and has made this version to run on both 10.10 Yosemite and 10.11 El Capitan. So for the first time we have an OS X version independent server software.

In this screencast I cover your back up strategy including taking a look at time machine, a bootable clone using
Cronosync, archiving your Open Directory and using Bender to back up all of your server files.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below. Also if you find this screencast helpful, please like, favorite and share it so others on the internet will find it.

Thanks for all your encouragement and support!



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iOS 9 Update Step by Step Walkthrough

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In this screencast tutorial I cover the iOS 9 update and walk you through update step by step. I show you which devices are eligible for the update and walk you through the steps to launching iOS 9 for the first time.

As always thanks for watching. If you have any questions or need help, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll do my best to get back to you.



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Two Xbox One's In One House: How to Online Game as a Family

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I thought I would write about something I don't generally write about much and that is gaming. My boys are really into playing online games with their friends through their Xbox One Console. They wanted to figure out if they could get another Xbox One and be able to play the same game together on separate consoles since most of the games these days don't do split screens or, if hey do it takes away from some of the action.
So we started our journey to figure out if this could be done. It should be pretty simple I thought. I went online to see if I could find the answer and I got a lot of confusion and nothing really clarified it for me. So in my own experimenting with this subject I thought I would put an article out there to hopefully help others in our situation not have to go through the frustration we did to find an answer. Before I get into the specifics, however, let me clarify the problem I'm trying to solve.

Xbox Live Family Sharing


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Microsoft did attempt to solve some of the issues with wanting to set up your own family LAN party with it's new family sharing feature built into Xbox Live. This feature allows you to share your Xbox live account with anyone who has an account on an Xbox One that you are logged into. Not only can you share Xbox Live access, you also share all of your online games. Now this sharing feature is attached to the Xbox you consider your Home Xbox. In addition to this, your content that you purchased digitally follows you to any console you log into whether it be your home Xbox or not. In this case you could have two Xbox One's in the same household have your family member log into the Xbox One that is designated as your home Xbox and you could then log into the second Xbox and both play the same digitally purchased game on both consoles. Once you log out of that second Xbox, however, your content is no longer available to any of the players on that Xbox. So it only works on the Home Xbox One or it follows the Xbox Live owner. For many families this might work were you have family members who have their own Xbox One's that they use all the time. So you would have two Xbox One's but only need one copy of the game digitally. A pretty good deal if you only have two people.

Multiple Players Switching Between Two Xbox One's


In the case of our family there are 4 of us who play the two Xbox One's we have in two common areas of the house. Depending on what is happening that day, we never know who will be playing on what box and no one wants to be tied to one room or the other. In that case, there is no easy solution and it is more costly. We found that each box needs to have an Xbox Live account so that everyone can change between boxes whenever they want. This then becomes no different than what you could do before with adding two Xbox's to the home with the exception that you don't need one for every player in the house. If you want to play digital content, you still have to have the family member login to the home Xbox of the one who purchased the content and you go to the other Xbox to play which is still inconvenient. We just decided to buy two disk versions of the game to play seamlessly and at least we can sell them back in the future once we get tired of playing them.

So there really is no easy way to have two Xbox One consoles in your home and play back and forth with one game seamlessly. With all of the hoops we had to jump through it would have almost been easier to say get two complete set ups and go from there. It sure would have saved a lot of time and effort to get done what we set out to do in the first place. Hopefully this will help some of you out there trying to do the same thing.
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iOS 9 Upgrade Part 2: Clean Install

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With new iPhones around the corner many of you will be looking to sell your old iPhone in order to upgrade to the new one. To help you get your iPhone in order for selling or if you want to start with a clean slate, I put together this walkthrough on how to start over with your iPhone. This will completely erase your iPhone and put it back to factory settings so be sure to have a good back up or two. I have found that it doesn't hurt to have an iCloud backup and a back up on your local Mac through iTunes just to be safe. That way if your bandwidth is too slow you can always plug your iPhone into your Mac and do the restore tethered through your lightning cable.

As always if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel. I hope you enjoy the video and your new iPhone of course!



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iOS 9 Upgrade Part 1: Backing Up with Phoneview

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With the upcoming iOS 9 upgrade, I thought I would start a series on preparing yourself for the upgrade by making sure you have done a few things to be ready. The first thing is making sure you have a solid back up of all of your data. Now the traditional iCloud backup is probably enough for most people but if you have data that you are concerned about such as your text messages or phone messages then Phoneview is a great option for getting those things backed up.
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The beauty of Phoneview is it will make archives of your phones information so you can get easy access to it. Every wished you could get a pdf of a text conversation you have had over time? Phoneview does that for you and allows you to view those messages even when your phone is not plugged into your Mac.

In this screencast I give you an overview of
Phoneview and cover it's features in detail. I would highly recommend using a product like this just to make sure all of your important communications are backed up and accessible outside of your phone. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.



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OS X El Capitan Beta Part 4: Maps & Notes

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In this screencast tutorial I continue my look at some of the changes in OS X El Capitan. I cover the changes to the Apple Maps Application and some major changes made to the Notes Application which makes it a more powerful tool for tracking not only your notes, but checklists, tasks, and even photos and documents. In all of this remember this is beta software which means what is covered here is subject to change with either features being added or taken away. Otherwise, enjoy a look at the futuresmiley_smile.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.






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OS X El Capitan Beta Part 3: Safari & Mail

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Moving on in our look at OS X El Capitan Beta, I take a look at the updates made to Safari and Mail. Each of these applications have been given some refinements in the beta that remove some annoyances most of us have in using them. On the Safari side there is the ability to pin tabs that you use most and global volume mute among other things. For mail you can finally go out of a compose window in fullscreen and can even compose two emails at one time.

In this screencast I walk through all of the changes in the current beta to give you and idea of how they work. Because this is beta software these updates could change or more features may be added before the final release. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel.





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OS X El Capitan Beta Part 2: New System Features

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In this screencast tutorial I walk through some of the system level changes included in the OS X 10.11 beta (remember this is a beta so changes can and will still happen). I cover the changes to mission control, split view, disk utility, spotlight and other small changes.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X El Capitan Beta Part 1: Dual Boot Installation

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to install the OS X El Capitan Beta side by side with your existing Mac set up. This has the advantage of speed and doesn’t delete your existing OS X set up as you will be running it in a dual boot format. I cover how to partition your drive, download the beta, and then walk through the installation process.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 35: Mobile Accounts

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up mobile accounts with OS X Server. I cover how to use profile manager to set up the mobility payload with all of the necessary settings. I then walk you through how to set up the mobile accounts on a client machine.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 34: Xcode

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In this screencast tutorial I cover a new service to OS X Server and that's the Xcode Server. I cover how to set up the service, get enrolled in the developer program, set your test macs to point to your server, set up bots to test your code, and setting up and managing git repositories. Since I am not a coder I don't go into detail on each but just walk you through how to set it up and get it running.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 33: NetInstall

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the NetInstall service in OS X Server. I cover how to create a disk image, how to customize the image to fit your needs, and how to set up and use the service once you have everything configured.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 32: DHCP

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the DHCP service in OS X Server. I cover pros and cons of using OS X Server's DHCP service as compared to a router. I also cover how to set up an Airport Extreme Base Station to work with server's DHCP service, walk you through all of the settings in the DHCP service, and cover how to set up static IP reservations for the clients on your network.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.

If you find this tutorial helpful please subscribe, like, favorite and share it so others can find it on the internet. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I'll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 31: FTP

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up the FTP service in OS X Server. The FTP service is not as secure as using SFTP but it can still work to transfer non critical files if you need a quick set up. I cover how to set the service up, open the appropriate ports (20, 21, and you may need to open 49152-65535 for remote access), and how to access those shares using the terminal and an FTP client.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.

If you would like me to consult with you in setting up your server I can do that remotely. Just email me at todd@toddolthoff.com.



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OS X Server Part 30: Wiki

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OS X Server has a built in wiki service that allows you to host your own wiki website. For many users the wiki website will be all they need for their own private website that can be used for collaboration. The website lets you add a blog or wiki, have a web calendar, and host and share documents that you can access over the web or through WebDAV on your iOS devices. Most aspects of the site are customizable so you can tweak it to make it your own.

In this screencast I walk through the wiki service and show how to set it up and some of the basic services available. I also walk through some of the customization options to show you the possibilities in making the wiki work for you. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave a comment below and I'll get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 29: Websites

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One of the advantages of running your own server is the ability to host your own websites and there is a great website service built into OS X Server. Now before you go out and try to host our own site, there are some things to keep in mind. First, you need to consider downtime and how important it is that your website be up 24/7. Things can go wrong with your server and power outages can cause a delay in getting your server back up so you want to make sure you are ok with those possible issues. You also want to make sure that your ISP will allow you to host a website and that they are not blocking the ports needed for web hosting (ports 80 and 443). Finally, you will need a static IP so your site can always be reached at the same IP address as most providers give dynamic IP addresses that change over time. When that change happens your site is down until you fix it.

In this screencast I cover how to set up your own website. I cover the built in site and how the settings function. Then I walk you through how to set up your own custom site including the DNS you need to make it work. If you have any questions or want help setting up your own website feel free to leave a comment and I'll get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 28: Profile Manager Devices

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Not only is Profile Manager great at managing users and groups, it also allows you to set up your devices to run the way you want them to. If you have ever had to manage multiple devices where the basic settings are the same for each one, then you know the pain of going to each device and setting them up one at a time. Sometimes you have to wait for the device to be ready before you set it up. It can take a lot of time and energy to make that happen but with Profile Manager you can do the set up once with a few clicks and then have those profiles pushed to all of you devices making the changes happen.

In this screencast I cover how to manage your devices through the Profile Manager web interface. I cover all of the settings unique to devices and what each of those settings will do on your Mac or iOS devices. I also cover how to set up device groups so you can manage groups of devices at one time instead of managing one device at a time. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment and I'll get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 27: Profile Manager Users & Groups

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One of the advantages of using Profile Manager is it's ability to customize user settings and then push those settings to your individual's devices when they login. From one interface you can customize all the aspects of their experience from what apps they have access to, to what settings should be made in System Preferences, to the wall paper on their desktop and their dock settings. All of these things can be set through the web interface from any computer that can access the web.

For those of you who manage a lot of users, this set up really makes managing those users a breeze. This works well for those managing schools or the workplace where you have different settings for different users or groups of users. It also works well at home for managing kids and making changes once which then take place for all of your kids.

In this screencast I walk through each of the settings for users and groups in Profile Manager. I give you an overview of all of the settings you can make and give some ideas of when you might want to use those settings. If you have any questions or want help setting up your own server, leave a comment below and I'll get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 26: Profile Manager Overview

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Profile Manager is one of the more powerful features of OS X Server. It allows you to manage all of your users and devices through one web interface and then push those changes to those devices or users when they log into their machines. I have used this service to manage my own household and it has been a delight to use and has cut down my time moving from device to device since I only need to make those changes once.

In this screencast I walk through the web interface for Profile Manager. I cover all of the main sections and what each area covers. In future screencasts I will walk through each of the settings you can customize for users & groups and also for devices & device groups. If you have any questions or would like help in setting up your own server, feel free to leave a comment and I'll get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 25: Profile Manager iOS Enrollment

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With many more users getting iOS devices such as iPhones and iPads, managing all of those devices in your household can be a chore. Well with Profile Manager built into OS X Server you can manage all of your devices remotely from one web interface. Before you are able to manage those devices, you have to make sure they are enrolled in your Profile Manager service. This includes making sure you have Open Directory up and running and the Profile Manager Service set up and running. Then you install a trust certificate so your device knows to trust certificates coming from your server. Once this is done, you can enroll your device and it is ready to be managed through the Profile Manager interface.

In this screencast I will show you how to enroll your iOS devices including adding all of the certificates you need to manage your device remotely. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them here or on my Youtube Channel.



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OS X Server Part 24: Profile Manager Mac Enrollment

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In this screencast tutorial I cover how to set up your Mac devices to be managed by Profile Manager. By enrolling your devices you include them in your Open Directory and allow for remote management and installation of settings through profiles pushed to your Macs by the Profile Manager Service. In this screencast I cover how to install the certificates including the order of installation and what you can do with your Mac from the my devices portal.

As always thanks for watching! If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.



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OS X Server Part 23: Profile Manager Set Up

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In this screencast I show you how to set up what might be one of the best services offered on OS X Server, Profile Manager. The idea that any user can manage multiple OS X and iOS devices through a web interface and push profiles to those devices that automatically set those machines up with your specific settings is a very powerful and useful package. I use this to manage the Macs and iOS devices in my household and it makes doing so easy.

In this screencast I show you how to set up Profile Manager so it is ready to use to create profiles to manage your devices and users. If you have any questions feel free to leave them below.



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OS X Server Part 22: Mail

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In this next screencast in my series on OS X Server I cover setting up the mail service. Email is something we have all come to take for granted. We expect it to be available and we expect it to work. OS X Server has a mail server implementation to help you host and control your own email. It is a good service as long as you keep a few things in mind. First, if you are running a home server I would recommend not using the mail service. In most home settings your ISP will most likely block port 25 which is needed to send email. This is done to block spammers from sending out junk mail which could cause the ISP issues from getting blocked by other mail servers. Second, if you don't have a static IP address you shouldn't run server because when your dynamic IP changes you will lose your email until you register that new IP with your domain provider.

If you don't have any of those issues you can give it a try but I would still caution you that running your own mail server can be difficult. I personally leave it to others to run but in case you want to do it, I put together this screencast to help you. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment.



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OS X Photos App Set Up

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With Apple's switch to the new Photos App from iPhoto and Aperture, there has been a lot written about the new app and how to use it. If you want an in-depth walk through and FAQ related to the new photos app take a look at this comprehensive overview from Serenity Caldwell over at iMore.

I decided it might help to do a walk through of the set up process to show you what it looks like to do the transfer from Aperture to the Photos App. I have found that seeing how it works can sometimes ease our own concerns about it so the screencast below is a walk through of the set up process. I will probably do other screencasts on the interface going forward so stay tuned. So far I have found the photos app to be helpful for your personal photos especially if you choose to use the iCloud Photo Library option. If you have a large library, be prepared to pay for more storage though. I hope you enjoy the video. Let me know if you have any questions or comments.



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OS X Server Part 21: Messages

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Built into OS X is a messages service that allows you to chat with other users through text and other instant messaging services. Just like what we covered with contacts and calendars, some users may see the need to have their own private messages server. This will keep all communications only on your server and your devices as opposed to anyone else server. You can also archive those messages if you want to use them later.

This is obviously more important to business or to home users who want to protect and monitor their kids communications and still give them access to a messaging service. Because you can limit who you users can connect to, you can see the benefit of hosting your own messaging server.

In this screencast I cover how to set up the messages service built into OS X Server. I also cover an issue with the current build of the messages service and how to fix it to hopefully get everything working the way you want.

f you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel and I'll do my best to get back to you.

Thanks for watching!



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OS X Yosemite Part 20: VPN

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Security is something many people are worried about lately. With exploits and hacks that have been created to steal our data, we all have to be concerned about protecting the typically ways that people can gain access to our computers. One way someone could hack your computer is through own wifi hotspots that are not secured. One way to protect yourself in coffee shops or airports where these hotspots are used is to use a VPN service to encrypt your communications back and forth on the internet.

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network and it basically logs you into your home server and then encrypts you communications and routes them through your home network. This keeps hackers from being able to read what you are sending back and forth over the internet. Another benefit of using a VPN is the ability to connect to your home server remotely without the need of purchasing a host name. The beauty of using OS X Server instead of paying for a VPN service is that it only costs $19.99 with no other fees.

In the screencast I cover how to set up the VPN service in OS X Server. I also cover how to set up your devices to use the service.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below or on my Youtube Channel and I'll do my best to get back to you.

Thanks for watching!