Using Royal TSx to administer your Windows network, from your Mac

Recently moved over to a Mac exclusively for my workstations, despite being a sysadmin for a medium-sized Windows Active Directory network.

Remote Desktops are tools-of-the-trade, and coming from Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Connection Manager (RDCMAN) console, I was struggling to find a suitable alternative for OSX.

Until I found Royal TSx.

This is essentially RDCMAN for OSX, on steroids.

Relax, it also comes in Windows edition (Royal TS) so die-hard windows nuts can keep reading.

Screen Shot 2015-08-20 at 7.39.01 pm

I found it fits my workflow perfectly with the following features;

* Organise RDP connections (and inherit credentials) by folders

* Organise Terminal, SSH and Telnet connections by folder

* Ability to sync your .rtsz data file to your work PC (via Dropbox)

* Can also use a “gateway” application (Royal Server) to tunnel to your network, and access other things like Event Logs, Terminal Services admin, and Windows Services – right from your Mac!

Price isn’t too bad (29EU for a personal use license, client only, no gateway server)

There’s also a 10-connection trial you can use.

Check it out at http://www.royalapplications.com/ts/osx/features

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Automating Maxmind GeoIP downloads on Windows

Sure – there’s lots of snippets for automating the GeoIP database downloads (with your Maxmind subscription) for your *nix boxes, but not many for Windows.

 

Here’s a simple PowerShell script that you can pop into your favourite job scheduler application (Batch Job Server, JAMS Scheduler, or *ugh* Windows Task Scheduler)

 

It’s pretty rough and not much error handling (I wrote it quickly) but it does the job to;

 

1. Download the latest GeoIP file

2. Unextract the double-zipped tar.gz file

3. Copy the unextracted .dat file to a location for you to use

 

(We use this in a webfarm environment, which is replicated to each web server via Microsoft’s DFSR)

 

It’s posted here on GitHub, so feel free to make improvements and collaborate 🙂

AFP setup on CentOS 7

Finding an accurate how-to for the minefield that is, open source software is sometimes terrible.

Documentation is hard to read, and often isn’t updated for point releases, which is often out of date.

 

Thank god this blog post from Zit Seng explains exactly how to setup Netatalk on CentOS 7.

https://zitseng.com/archives/6182

 

Except for the afp.conf file, which sometimes needs a little more massaging to be usable as a bare minimum config.

 

I found it needs the uam list property present in the file in order for AFP clients to connect successfully.

I’m using OSX 10.10.5 (Yosemite) and found without these config directives accessing the shares would fail.

 

Here’s a working usable config you can use;