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Remote mounting from MacOS X

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To access your TCC account or print on a TCC printer from your MacOs X system:


Using the finder

To mount a share using the Finder, you will need at least Mac OS X 10.1. Previous versions of the OS do not contain the necessary features to support accessing SMB shares natively.

  1. The first step to mounting the share is to select the Go menu and then select Connect to Server. The Finder keyboard shortcut is Command + K. This will open the Connect to Server dialog box.
  2. In this box there is a field labeled Address. In this field enter:
        smb://workgroup;username@server/share
    For example, for account name you:
        smb://tcc;you@userhost.nmt.edu/you
  3. Click the Connect button. If all goes well you will be presented with the SMB/CIFS Filesystem Authentication window. This window will list the workgroup, username, and server used in the previous window.
  4. Enter the appropriate password and then click OK. When done correctly, you will now see an icon on your desktop that is labeled with the name of the share you just mounted. You can now use the share just like any other drive on your system.

Using the Terminal and mount

The second method of mounting an SMB share in OS X is to delve into its UNIX roots and use the command-line interface.

  1. Open up the Terminal. To do this, double-click on Macintosh HD, then on Applications, then Utilities, and finally, Terminal. This will open up a command line session on your Mac and present you with a prompt.
  2. To mount the share, you will first need to create a folder to attach the share to. To do this, use the mkdir command as follows:
        % mkdir myshare
  3. For you to mount the share, you need to be logged in as root. Once you've created the directory, su to the root user, then enter the following command:
        # mount_smbfs -W workgroup //username@server/share ./myshare
    This will mount the remote share as the myshare directory, which means that it will not appear on your Desktop, but you should be able to access it much like any other folder using the Finder.

Using the .nsmbrc file

Instead of having to re-enter your password, username, and workgroup every time, there's a shortcut available to you. You can create a file in your home directory called .nsmbrc (note the dot). This file has a simple format, explained below, and allows you to store the mounting information. One thing to note is that you should use the chmod command to change the permissions of the file to 0600 to protect your passwords.

Here's the general form of your ~/.nsmbrc file:

    [netbios:username:share]
    addr=server_ip
    password=password
    workgroup=workgroup

Here's an example ~/.nsmbrc file:

    [userhost:you:you]
    addr=129.138.4.64
    password=password
    workgroup=TCC

This file is very straightforward. The line in brackets has three fields: [netbiosname:username:share]. So in the example, you're logging onto the userhost server as user you and trying to mount the you share (your home folder on userhost).

The second line is the actual IP address of userhost. This field is not optional on the campus network.

The third line is your password, and then the appropriate workgroup.

Now when you mount a share using the Finder, it won't prompt you for this additional information; you can just enter the server and share in the Connect to Server dialog and you're all set.


See also: Remote use of files and printers
Previous: Remote mounting from Linux
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John Shipman, tcc-doc@nmt.edu
Last updated: 2003/08/08 22:02:10 UT
URL: http://www.nmt.edu/tcc/remote/mac.html
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