A number of sites running Apples new “Tiger” operating system are experiencing problems with SMB file sharing and authentication with Microsofts Active Directory, Ziff Davis Internet News has learned.
Although Apple Computer Inc.s Tiger increases support for Server Message Block file sharing and Active Directory, several sources say that the Finder fails to log on to Windows and Linux Samba file servers.
Some installations are also finding that Windows workstations cant to log on to the Mac after upgrading to Mac OS X 10.4.
There also appear to be a variety of problems with Active Directory.
Some companies say their users cant log on using Mobile Active Directory accounts, while others report problems mounting home directories automatically.
The problems do not appear to affect all users, but are being reported at Apples discussion forums and other places around the Internet.
It is not known if the SMB and Active Directory problems are related to Tigers incompatibility with some third-party network software.
An Apple representative said Apple was unaware of the problems.
“Mac OS X includes built-in support for SMB clients and servers and the new Tiger versions adds even greater support for SMB. We have not received any customer reports of issues with SMB in Tiger, however, we will investigate the few stories posted on Web sites. If any customer has an issue they should contact AppleCare.”
However, several users have told Ziff Davis Internet News that they have been contacting Apple, and more than once.
“I have twice called the Mac technical support line, but was unable to get a solution from them,” said Travis MacDonald, a technical consultant with Lara Internet Service Provider.
Another source said he had sent problem reports to Apple Developer Connection on both the SMB and Active Directory problems.
MacDonald described the SMB problem.
“I am getting the … error code -36 when using the Connect to Server option. The command mount_smbfs also does not work.”
However, McDonald said that another Terminal command is functional: “The command smbclient is working normally.”
With Active Directory, Tiger users with mobile accounts can log on once, but cannot log on again after disconnecting.
One source said, “To allow login, one must remove the AD authentication path from the Directory Access authentication tab leaving only the local authentication path.”
There are also reports of problems with Open Directory.
“To be honest, without the machine being bound to AD and OD, [Tiger] is kind of useless for me in my environment,” said Brad Anderson, Macintosh Systems Administrator for The Marketing Store.
-Party Software Problems”>
Although a number of developers have released Tiger compatibility updates, there are still compatibility problems with software used in enterprise.
Digital Technology International, which makes publishing systems for newspapers, said that while the company is pushing for a Tiger release, problems with other software is holding it back.
“Our software is ready to go on Tiger,” said Alyson Williams, marketing director at Digital Technology International. “But were a systems integrator, and there are some issues that have to do with third-party products that arent yet certified [for Tiger compatibility].”
Adobe said Acrobat 7 has a problem with QuickTime 7, which ships with Tiger.
“We are aware of an issue that prevents the playback of QuickTime content embedded in PDF files when using QuickTime 7 Player on all supported versions of Mac OS X,” said an Adobe representative.
Adobe said that it would issue a fix in an upcoming maintenance release, but did not say when.
Five of Symantecs Mac products are incompatible with Tiger, but the company said that there was nothing unusual about the Tiger release due to the nature of Symantecs utility software.
“Each new version of OS X necessitates a lot of changes with our systems,” said Mike Romo, Mac prod manager for Symantec.
However, Symantec is only upgrading three of the incompatible utilities.
“We announced last year that we wont be updating Norton SystemWorks and Norton Utilities [for Tiger],” said Romo. “We were committed through Panther.”
Symantec is still selling SystemWorks and Norton Utilities for earlier versions of Mac OS X.
Symantec is working on updating Norton AntiVirus, which has several features (Auto-Protect and Scan on mount) that dont work with Tiger.
It will also have fixes for Norton Internet Security and Norton Personal Firewall, which do not run at all in Tiger.
Symantec would not say when it would release Tiger compatibility updates, but indicated that it would announce ship dates in the near future.
Hardware Drivers, Panicky Kernels
Tiger also has caused some incompatibility with driver-level software related to hardware.
For example, the Radeon X800 XT graphics card from ATI Technologies Inc. has ROM software that is incompatible with Tiger.
The ROM software can cause a kernel panic, a type of crash when the Mac screen is covered with lines of code.
ATI recommends that Tiger users downgrade to the original version 104 of the ROM software. The installer for ATIs April ROM Update provides the ability to downgrade.
“The next update addresses [these] issues and will be posted end of this month or early next month,” said Carrie Maynard, ATI public relations manager for Workstation, Mac and Technical Marketing.
Users can also see kernel panics when upgrading to Tiger with Maxtor FireWire and USB hard drives connected to the Mac.
Maxtor recommends that users disconnect Maxtor external drives before running Apples Tiger installer. However, the company said it could not predict when a fix would be available.
“We work with [Apple],” said a Maxtor spokesperson, “but we dont have an answer, as we dont test compatibility with OSes.”
Editors Note: This story was updated to include expanded comments from an Apple Computer spokeswoman.
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