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U Central Lancashire Eases Network Access for Mac Users

The University of Central Lancashire in the United Kingdom is using GroupLogic's ExtremeZ-IP to eliminate file access and integrity issues for Mac users trying to save, edit, and access files on the university's Windows-based network.

The problem began in 2010 when the university upgraded to Windows 7 and the IT staff reconfigured its servers.

Ten percent of the university's user base is made up of Mac users. The IT staff at Central Lancashire estimates that 60 percent of the help desk calls from those users were related to problems associated with supporting Apple products alongside Windows devices and servers. All of the users within that subset were experiencing the same problems. They weren't able to access saved files or, when they could, they were unable to edit and resave without creating a new file.

ExtremeZ-IP is designed to enhance file sharing for Mac users within a Windows environment and to integrate Macs into Active Directory and Distributed File Systems. Among other things, it supports Mac resource forks and eliminates dot underscore ("._") files, provides DFS namespace browsing for Mac users, and eliminates the need for AppleTalk on the network while maintaining support for the intrinsic capabilities of the Mac for end users, such as Time Machine, Bonjour, and Network Spotlight.

ExtremeZ-IP provides integration with Windows environments including:

  • Windows 2003 and 2008 servers;
  • Microsoft Clustering;
  • Windows ACL permissions;
  • Network-based Home Directories;
  • Kerberos single sign-on authentication; and
  • Volume Shadow Copy Service previous versions file restoration.

The University of Central Lancashire serves 35,000 students with 3,000 staff members and 5,000 computers.

More information about ExtremeZ-IP is available at grouplogic.com.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is the multimedia editor for Campus Technology and THE Journal. He can be reached at jbolkan@1105media.com.

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