Charles Edge has written 9 books and over 3,000 blog posts on technology, with a focus on large-scale systems and server management. He is the Chief Technology Officer of 318, a national consultancy and managed services provider with a focus on the Apple platform. When not playing with computers at work, he can probably be found tinkering with computers for fun.
A properly set up server should be able to run unattended, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore it all the time. A good sysadmin knows to check in on the server on a regular basis, and in this final chapter of “Take Control of OS X Server,” Charles Edge suggests weekly, monthly, and annual maintenance tasks that will keep your server running smoothly. He also discusses some common issues that tend to crop up, and points to additional resources when you need somewhere to turn for help.
Backup is essential, both when it comes to backing up your server and backing up your users’ data. In this chapter from Charles Edge’s “Take Control of OS X Server,” he talks briefly about how best to back up your server data before going into more detail about enabling and running the Time Machine service.
If you’re interested in reducing unnecessary bandwidth usage from multiple users downloading the same software updates, or in controlling which Apple updates your Mac users can install, read this chapter of Charles Edge’s “Take Control of OS X Server” for details on the similar but separate Caching and Software Update services.
For organizations large and small, wikis can be tremendously useful, since they make it so anyone (with permissions) can create and edit pages on a Web site without knowing HTML or needing special tools. In this chapter of “Take Control of OS X Server,” Charles Edge explains how to enable the Wiki service, create a wiki, and create and edit wiki pages. Plus, with the click of a single checkbox, any wiki created in OS X Server can have an associated blog. What’s not to like?
Every organization must have a Web site these days, and if you’re already running OS X Server on a Mac with an appropriate static IP address and domain name, it’s relatively easy to enable Server’s Apache-based Websites service. Nonetheless, there’s a lot to know as you get into the configuration, and Charles Edge dives into the details ‘in this chapter of “Take Control of OS X Server.”
One of most useful features of OS X Server is Profile Manager, which provides mobile device management — the capability to configure numerous iOS devices or Macs with consistent settings and policies. In this chapter of “Take Control of OS X Server,” Charles Edge explain how to enable Profile Manager and start managing your devices.
In this chapter of “Take Control of OS X Server,” Charles Edge tries to persuade readers not to turn on OS X Server’s mail services, not because they’re difficult, but because doing so means non-stop battle against a constant onslaught of spam and malware. But if you do wish to venture into the breach, Charles provides the necessary background and instructions.
Many of the services provided by OS X Server enable collaboration of one sort or another, but in this chapter of "Take Control of OS X Server," Charles Edge focuses on three types of collaboration: contact sharing, calendar sharing, and instant messaging, which map to the Contacts, Calendar, and Messages services in OS X Server.
If you want to share files among a family, class, or workgroup on an internal network, you’ll want to turn on file sharing in OS X Server. In this chapter, Charles Edge explains the different procotols available (AFP, SMB, and WebDAV) and how to create a shared folder, customize permissions, and connect to it from client machines.
Although DNS configuration beyond what you did in your initial setup isn’t absolutely necessary, it can be helpful for improved performance and easier access to internal servers. Read on for instructions.
After initial setup, the next step to take with OS X Server is to configure directory services, so you have your users and groups ready for when you enable other services in subsequent chapters.
This is the most important chapter in “Take Control of OS X Server,” because getting OS X Server properly installed and configured on a clean installation of OS X 10.9 Mavericks is essential for future reliability and stability. These instructions don’t always take the most obvious route because hard-won experience has shown that extra effort at the start can prevent significant troubles later on.
As the carpenter’s saying goes, “Measure twice, cut once.” Rarely is this more true than when planning to deploy a server. The more people who will access the shared resources of the server, the more the saying applies. In this chapter, Charles Edge explains what sort of hardware specs — in terms of storage, CPU power, RAM, and bandwidth — are necessary for your server, depending on what you want it to accomplish.
In this introduction to “Take Control of OS X Server,” author Charles Edge provides an overview of what you can expect in future chapters and where he’s coming from.