Archive for category: Third Party Applications

File Distributor 1.0

If you need to replace every instance of a particular file inside a directory structure (e.g., distribute a set of bookmarks to every user's home directory), you can use my File Distributor application. You put in the path to the file that you want to use as a replacement, the name of the file that you want replaced, and the path to the folder where you want to start the replacement process. You can do this by typing it in, drag and drop, or selecting from a standard file dialog. Grab it from

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Policy Banner 1.0

A slightly tweaked version of the loginwindow policy banner that we posted about earlier.

Read on for where to get it. 

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iftop Installer Package

iftop is a free network bandwidth analyzer. In the words of it’s creators “iftop is for network usage what top is for CPU usage”. It has many useful features including filtering by protocol and network (f) or an arbitrary regex (l) and is now available as a Universal Binary in installer package format. It’s installed into /usr/local/sbin.

The interface is fairly self-explanatory (the 3 columns on the right are transmission statistics for the last 2, 10 and 40 second intervals) but you might want to check the manpage for a complete explanation. You can also press “h” to get a help screen while it’s running.

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Mount Network Homes Easily

Here is a freebie application that mounts network home directories in an Open Directory environment. The program does a quick LDAP lookup and mounts the Volume. It also lets you specify a second mount volume for shared files.

This application is useful for environments that don’t have many MCX clients, yet want to be able to conveniently mount home directories. This is especially suited to elementary schools where student proficiency is still low and IT support is minimal.

Find it here.

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PaperCut on Mac Servers

After a six month testing program, PaperCut Software have released their final version of PaperCut NG for Mac OS X Server. The Mac version has all the functionally of the popular Windows edition including, print quota, print monitoring, shared accounts, release station and rule based filtering of print jobs. The system works by hooking into CUPS. More information is available here.

The developers also recently presented at the Mac Managers meeting at the University of Utah and the presentation is available online in PDF and QuickTime format.

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Network Home Redirector

Ed. Note: We’ve talked about redirecting parts of your home folder a number of times when dealing with AFP, but I don’t think we’ve ever actually laid out how to do it. This collection of scripts makes it easy.

If you manage an environment with lots of network home directory usage, then you need to check out Network Home Redirector. Most, if not all, of us have dealt with the thousands/millions of cache files that can hurt AFP performance on servers when utilizing network homes. Additionally, MS Office and the large chunks of data that it relocates can cause headaches. Jeff Ochsner has put together these redirection scripts and packaged them up for easy deployment.

This might be your new best friend. Be sure to read the ReadMe on Jeff’s site.

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Server Monitoring and Notifications

BixData: Powerful easy to use monitoring

BixData is a handy new tool for SysAdmins. It can monitor everything that your network and systems depend on. After a simple installation you can monitor network devices, HTTP, Web Services, Mail Servers, File Systems and Applications. Be notified instantly when a service or device goes down or escalate notification based on downtime.

Cross-platform and scales to 1000’s of servers.

There is a free version for monitoring under 30 machines.

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RAID Monitor

This handy little application has been updated to version 1.0.1. The new version improves support for 10.3.5-10.3.9 systems.

The new version can be obtained from, or the usual downloads sites (Version Tracker, MacUpdate)

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PaperCut print control now on Mac

PaperCut Software has just finished their first version of PaperCut NG for OS X Server. The Mac version has all the functionally of the Windows edition including, print quota, print monitoring, shared accounts, release station and rule based filtering of print jobs. The system works by hooking into CUPS.

Details of the Mac version are available at:

The software is currently in a public preview period and the developers are keen to get feedback from Mac server administrators, particularly those working in schools and higher education.

A bit more information can be found on the developer’s web log.

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Spotlight for the Network

Search your network shares through a web interface. has released Searchlight 1.0 which allows you to use Spotlight on a server through a web interface from a client machine. In addition to finding documents you can also set up saved searches and get change notifications.

We haven’t had a chance to play around with this yet, but we’d be interested to hear from anyone that has. For the $29 that it costs, it would seem to be an intriguing product.

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