Category Archives: Mac OS X

Remote from Mac into Linux

You can use the X window system to ‘remote’ into another machine. In OS X it launches X11, as this is the X window client for Mac. What is actually happening is the remote system is sending system information to your local machine and allowing that to render the desktop and graphical views. This is opposed to the way VNC or Apple Remote Desktop works, by taking that already rendered image and compressing it down to sent it over the pipe. The ‘X -query’ tends to have better performance on remote systems because you aren’t sending full screen graphics, only remote system calls.
To do this, use the following command:

X -query I.P.Add.ress


Rsync 3.0.9 for Lion

Lion ships with the same version of rsync as panther did. Version 2.6.9 is great and all, but its a bit outdated. The newer versions of rsync allow you to do some better stuff, and along with some patches for OS X (by Mike Bombich) it is a great tool for Xsan volumes as well. (more…)

Directory Services Command Line (dscl)

To make changes, all commands must be done with sudo privileges. To read only, no sudo is required:

Just as an LDAP server has a directory, every desktop and server computer has a local directory structure where the local user information is stored. This is most easily accessed using the dscl tool in command line. There are 2 modes for the tool, Interactive and Non-Interactive mode. Non-interactive mode is what a script (such as the hidden user script) would use, you type an entire command before hitting enter. Interactive mode gives you a dynamic environment to run in. (more…)

Configure Remote Desktop From the Command Line

All commands must be done with sudo privileges:

You can enable remote management with the these commands in command line. This is very useful after you have created a hidden admin user, because the GUI will not allow you to see the hidden user in the sharing preference pane. Its also very useful for scripting. I made a script that creates a hidden admin user and performs this configuration, and I rolled it into an OSX installer packager. Then I carry it around on my USB stick for any machines in my area that are not accepting ARD connections.


Creating a Hidden Admin User

This is a quick tutorial on some of the basics of creating a hidden user. This tutorial is the information that I used to create my Administrative Install Package that I put on all machines that I service. At a workplace people get very possessive of their machines (even though its not really “theirs”). Many of my users didn’t like seeing another username in the login screen. But I can’t service a hundred computers when I have no access into them. This way, I have full access and none of the users know. This is specific to Leopard, and I believe this also works with Snow Leopard. However, Tiger uses the netinfo command line instead, which is similar in its interactions, but not entirely the same.