Networking probs for school new to macs

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Peter H, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. Peter H macrumors newbie

    Oct 1, 2007
    Can anyone help?

    I am writing from a primary school in England. We have bought about 10 macs for multimedia work. We have a small MacOSx server integrated into our existing network and our PC server. We are using parallels so that children can use existing PC software too. We have a number of long-standing problems that our tech support company (new to macs) don't seem to be able to sort out. Can anyone make any suggestions:

    Inconsistent logging on - sometimes (1 in 8?) users can't log on, we get the spinning colour wheel and we have to reboot.

    Can share out of iMovie. Exporting a QT movie does not work to anywhere on the network, but will work to an external hard drive

    Some users can't access the internet because it says there is already a copy of Firefox open

    Any ideas?

  2. Kelmon macrumors 6502a


    Mar 28, 2005
    United Kingdom
    I'm sorry that I cannot provide answer to your questions but I feel certain that the Internet will likely hold them somewhere. In this respect I can at least recommend some actions to take since your 2nd and 3rd issues probably impact others as well (the 1st sounds like a network or configuration issue but I have no experience with OS X Server). The 3rd issue might be good to address on Apple's discussion forums for OS X Server (

    Presumably each of the issues that you are encountering (except the first) displays an error dialog of sorts. I would suggest using Google to search for articles that include either the entire error message or at least part of it. For example, if the error message that you had received for the Firefox problem was "Unable to open Firefox because Firefox is already open" then I'd suggest searching for the following:

    "Unable to open Firefox because Firefox is already open" "OS X"

    If this doesn't get you a suitable hit then try replacing "OS X" with Mac. This is only needed for cross-platform application problems in order to ensure that you don't end up looking at articles for the Windows version or others.

    I tend to find that you get the most useful answers if you can include as much specific information as possible, such as the exact error message that you are seeing and the version of the application that you are seeing it in (usually found in the About option under the application's menu (e.g. Firefox > About Mozilla Firefox)).
  3. MikeDTyke macrumors 6502a

    Sep 7, 2005
    I think we need more information about the setup and problems, before you'll get usefull answers.

    When you say logging in, is that into Macos or onto the parrallels vm's?
    When logging in are you using remote home dirs for clients on either the macos or PC servers?

    If iMovie is unable to write out to a fileshare, does that apply to any other application or only iMovie?

    Firefox writes a PID file if i remember correctly, so that if you start a second copy, it should check if the 1st is still running. I'm assuming you can't see the 1st on the desktop, but you could confirm by opening Activity Monitor in the utilities dir. Sounds like a bad install, i'd remove firefox completely and re-install.

    If you were to upload your console and system logs i'd be happy to take a look. Look in console app in utilities too. Though i'd recommend saving the log out to desktop and then do a search and replace in the logfiles for any IP address and replace it with something like, before publishing anywhere online.

  4. miniConvert macrumors 68040


    Mar 4, 2006
    Kent, UK - the 'Garden of England'.
    The login problem could be due to DNS. If you're using LDAPv3, configured on the clients in Directory Access, like we do then I suggest putting in the IP address of the authenticating server rather than a hostname.

    I don't have dedicated DNS for local hostnames available on our network and I have managed to keep everything running smoothly. However, Apple's documentation states very clearly that for a number of functions to work correctly, including Kerberos authentication which is probably very important in a mixed network, DNS has to be configured and working correctly so the local hostnames resolve to IP's and (I would think) vice-versa.

    Exporting that QuickTime movie could be an issue with user permissions. Most client logins, hosted on a server, will not be able to write to the local machines hard disk - only their home folder which is stored on the network. I have this set on our network because I don't want staff using the local drives, but they can still use external drives and I provide generous home user area storage.

    This probably wont help, but I hope some of it does, somehow!

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