How to Connect OS X to Windows Machines

OS X has a default file sharing protocol AFP also known by the name Apple Filing Protocol. It is little surprising that Apple supports sharing of files with Windows machines by using the SMB protocol. Since OS X is a UNIX based system, Apple initially supported the open source Samba suite which is quite popular. The license violations forced Apple to replace Samba suite with SMB. The specifications of SMB might vary, but the method of connecting to Windows Machines remains the same for all versions of OS X. Before starting to connect, make sure that you are on par with all the latest updates which is the simplest method to avoid compatibility issues. This can be done by just clicking on the Apple logo and selecting System update. Take a look at the methods that can be used to connect:

Bonjour Services:Bonjour is an auto-discovery service that is included in OS X. Bonjour will detect Windows Machines that are nearby if the Windows file sharing is enabled. So how to activate Windows file sharing?

• Click on the Apple logo and select “Sharing System preferences”
• From the services list, choose the option “File Sharing”. Make sure to check the service list thoroughly
• Select the “Options” button
• From the drop-down box choose to “share folders and files using SMB”
Windows Machines is now connected with the network. You can find it appearing in the “shared” option on the Finder sidebar. Files can now be transferred from Mac to Windows on the network.

SMB Connection:Bonjour services fail to detect Windows Machines in a few occasions. However, if your Windows machine is on the network, connection can be manually evoked from the “Go menu” in Finder sidebar. Manual connection is not as hard as thought to be. The following simple steps will complete the task within fractions of a second.

• Go to the Finder sidebar and choose “Go menu”
• Choose “connect to server” from this menu
• An address bar appears in front of the screen. Type “smb://” in it followed by the name of the PC or IP address to which you wish to connect
• When prompted authenticate this address

You are now connected and files can be transferred without any trouble.

Use mount_smbf:The SMB plug-in file system is yet another method to mount an SMB as a local drive. This is similar to mapping a network drive in Windows. Implement the following steps to mount an SMB drive.

• Create a folder on the system to use as a mount point
• Place it on the desktop and name it as “mount”.
• Go to Applications and select the Utilities folder. The Terminal utility option has to be opened from there.
• Give the command “mount_smbfs// followed by the username and server name.

The user name can be replaced with the log-in name that you like to connect with the server. When failed to make this change, the command will assume OS X username account. The username for this account might be different. Similarly, the server name has to be replaced with the IP address or URL of the server that you intend to connect. Additionally, include the name of the folder beside it. This might require some sharing setups from Windows. Execute the command now and the desktop’s mount folder becomes the shared folder of the Windows Machine. This folder can be accessed to edit and copy files.

All the three methods mentioned above are still in practice. Apple is constantly working to develop the compatibility with Windows. Since Microsoft does not support Apple equipments, Apple relies largely on Windows Enterprise.
Author:Allan Goltz likes writing articles related to Technology News, Gadget Reviews and How To. He also does guest posting for - a site that offers savings and current information on charter tv, as well as services

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1 comments: on "How to Connect OS X to Windows Machines"

Sony Ittiachan said...

Your article is very informative, specially to the new individual entering to the field..... But I expect a little more detailed explanations for making the topic more clear for the common readers…. Sorry if am wrong.... Make Money , Blogging Tips

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