Mac to Mac networking guide

Le Big Mac

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Jan 7, 2003
Washington, DC
I know Macs are easy to network to each other, so maybe nothing exists.

But, is there a comprehensive guide to networking macs together on a home network--for file sharing, photo sharing, tunes sharing, etc.? In other words, here are all the things you can do and here's how to do it. And what are the security precautions (internal) that one should take.


macrumors regular
Oct 13, 2005
Oklahoma City
I have to agree. I just got a 15" Mac Book Pro and for the life of me I can't get it to network.

They see each other, but that's it, can't view any files I have shared.

Plenty on how to setup Windows to Mac networking, but nothing in the guides or posts to do a mac to mac.

mad jew

Moderator emeritus
Apr 3, 2004
Adelaide, Australia
I just turn on Personal File Sharing in the Sharing pane of System Preferences. Sometimes Finder takes a while to find my other Macs so I have to manually navigate to the IP by pressing COMMAND-K in Finder. System Preferences tells you the address you need to access the computer you're on. :)


macrumors 6502a
Jul 9, 2005
The town without George Bailey
Remember, between macs, only public folders are shared with anonymous access. You can authenticate as the user and gain access to the entire home folder too on the mac you're trying to access.

Like madjew said, all you have to do is open System Preferences, go to Sharing, and check off or press start for Personal File Sharing. It will tell you the ip address of your mac. There is also a tab to change the name of your mac. Both the client and server mac must be on the same local subnet in order to appear in eachother's "My Network" folder in Finder (under 'Network' on the left above your hard drive in the side bar). Either navigate to the server mac that way, or on the client mac press COMMAND + K in the Finder and type afp:// then the ip address of the server mac (as indicated when you highlight Personal File Sharing on the Sharing pane of the mac acting as the server).


macrumors 6502
May 10, 2002
Is there an OS X app to facilitate file transfers?

I found this called SnapMail

I'm gonna try it out. I just want to have easy access to my other mac on the local network to transfer files back and forth, without having to go through the finder as much.

Update: SnapMail is not what I need. I figure to just keep a Finder window open that is connected to a folder on my PowerBook. Maybe I can do an Automate action to do the steps to open that networked Finder window.