Thursday 26 July 2007

Mac on SBS - Creating a VPN connection to SBS

It is unfortunate that we are not able to get connected a Terminal Services session via the Remote Web Workplace on our iMac.

It would not be feasible to have 10 Macs connected via RRAS on any given day. This would be a bandwidth killer.

But, on occasion, a connection to the server for management may be needed, or a user may need access to their XP Pro/Vista Business box at work and they have a Mac at home.

To get around this, we need to create a PPTP VPN connection to the server.

To do this:
  1. Open Finder.
  2. Click on Applications.
  3. Double click on Internet Connect.asp.
  4. You will be presented with the following window:

  5. Click on the VPN Lock.
  6. "Your computer needs to be set up to make VPN connections." Click on PPTP.
  7. Authenticate by inputting your Mac access password if requested.
  8. Set the server address:
  9. Put your SBS login name in "Account Name".
  10. Enter your login password.
  11. Click on the Connect button.
  12. Start the Remote Desktop Client and connect using the FQDN (Fully Qualified Domain Name: mysbsbox.myinternallan.lan).
This is a quick, in-a-pinch, kind of solution.

One would think that it would be possible to connect to a shared company folder as well. But, so far we are not able to connect to the remote SBS box over the VPN. This is by either clicking on the Network icon in Finder, or typing the FQDN of the SBS server in the Search.

A little bit more research is in order because Apple's Web site indicates that it should be possible: Windows: Join the Network.

Ah, here we go: Subject: Viewing Shares via VPN PPTP Mac OSX to SBS 2000.

We need to click Go and Connect to Server in finder and enter: smb://netbiosnameofmyserver/. We also need to make sure to have followed the connect a Mac to SBS instructions about disabling SMB signing on the SBS box! And, there we go! :D

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists

*All Mac on SBS posts are posted on our in-house iMac via the Safari Web browser.

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