SME Server:Documentation:Administration Manual:Chapter7

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Configuring the Computers on Your Network

What Order to do Things

For efficiency, we recommend you configure your desktop computers in the following order:

Step 1: First, configure one of your desktop computers to work with TCP/IP (using the information in this chapter).

Step 2: With TCP/IP up and running on one of your computers, you can now access the server manager over the web and create your employees' user accounts. The next chapter, explains this simple process.

Step 3: Once e-mail accounts are created, you can ensure that all the computers on your network are configured for TCP/IP, e-mail, web browsing and LDAP using the information in this chapter and the User Manual.

This chapter helps you configure software and hardware supplied by other companies and for that reason is not as specific as the rest of this guide. Given the wide range of computers, operating systems and software applications, we cannot accurately explain the process of configuring each of them. If your computers and applications came with manuals, they might be useful supplements to this chapter. Technical problems encountered in networking your desktop computers and applications are best resolved with the vendors who support them for you.


Warning.png Warning:
This chapter demonstrates only one of the many possible ways to configure your client computers and is provided here as an example.

Configuring Your Desktop Operating System

The dialog box where you configure your desktop differs from operating system to operating system and version to version. As an example, in Microsoft Windows Seven, client configuration occurs in the "Properties" dialog box associated with the TCP/IP protocol for your ethernet adapter. If a TCP/IP protocol is not yet associated with your ethernet adapter, you may need to add one before you can configure its properties with the following information.


Information.png Tip:
To get there, go to the notification area at the bottom right, click on the icon network, select open "network and sharing center" then use the link "connection to the local network" and finally the Properties tab.

Item Description What to enter
enable TCP/IP protocol All your computers must communicate on the network using the TCP/IP protocol. In Windows you add a TCP/IP protocol. In Apple, open TCP/IP Control Panel.
disable non-TCP/IP protocols Unless an application relies on a non- TCP/IP protocol, disable all other protocols. Turn "off" other networking protocols (e.g. NetBeui, etc.)
enable DHCP service See section below In Windows, enable "Obtain an IP address service automatically". In Apple, select "DHCP server".


Important.png Note:
We strongly recommend that you configure all clients machines using DHCP rather than manually using static IP addresses. Should you ever need to change network settings or troubleshoot your network later, you will find it much easier to work in an environment where addresses are automatically assigned.

On a Windows seven system, the window will look like the image below.

Tcp ip properties ip auto.png
Automatic DHCP Service

Your server provides a DHCP server that assigns each of the computers on your network an IP address, subnet mask, gateway IP address and DNS IP address(es). For a more detailed explanation of DHCP, consult the section in the|Chapter 5 called "Configuring Your DHCP Server".


Important.png Note:
In some rare cases, you may want to use a static IP address for a particular client machine. The typical approach is to manually enter this IP address into the network properties of the specific machine. The negative side of this approach is that you cannot easily change or alter network settings without having to go in and modify the information on the client machine. However, it is possible to provide this static IP address directly through DHCP rather than manually configuring the client computer. To do so, you will first need to determine the Ethernet address of the client computer (usually through the network properties). Next you will go to the Hostnames and addresses web panel of the server manager and enter the information there.


Warning.png Warning:
Only One DHCP Server

It is imperative that no other DHCP server is on your network. If a former DHCP server configured your computers, you should remove that DHCP server from your network. Leave DHCP enabled, and reboot each computer. New IP addresses, netmasks, gateway IP addresses and DNS addresses will be assigned automatically by the server DHCP server.


Manual entry for computers not using DHCP service

As noted above, we strongly recommend that you perform all your client configuration using DHCP. It is even possible to assign a static IP address through the Hostnames and addresses web panel of the server manager that will be distributed through your DHCP server. However, if your computers do not support DHCP, you must manually enter the following information into your TCP/IP properties:

Item Description What to enter
IP address Manually enter this information (see paragraph below). You must assign a different, unique IP address to computers not accepting DHCP (see note below).
subnet mask (or netmask) Manually enter this number. The default subnet mask (or netmask) is "255.255.255.0".
gateway IP address Enter the IP address for the server or, in the case of server-only mode, enter the IP address for your network's gateway (e.g. the firewall or network router). If you are running in server and gateway mode, your server is your local network's gateway. Enter its IP address here: the default is "192.168.1.1". If you are running in server-only mode, enter the IP address for the device interfacing with your external network(i.e the box of your Internet Service Provider for example).
IP addresses of your domain name servers Manually enter this information. Normally you would just add the IP address for your server - the default used in the server console is "192.168.1.1". If you have a firewall other than your server that restricts internal queries to Internet DNS servers, you may need to enter additional DNS servers here.

It is critical that every computer on your network has a unique IP address and that you don't assign two computers the same address. In enabling DHCP service in the server console, you designated a range of IP addresses for DHCP assignment. You also allocated a block of IP addresses for manual assignment. If you accepted the defaults pre-configured into the server console, IP addresses 192.168.1.2 through 192.168.1.64 will have been set aside for manual entry. To avoid duplication, use only those IP addresses when manually assigning IP addresses to your computers.

Tcp ip properties ip select.png

After configuring the TCP/IP parameters, you may need to reboot your desktop computer to implement the configuration changes. (For example, most Windows systems need to be rebooted after the TCP/IP configuration has been changed.) Once the settings take effect, your computer will be connected to the server and to the Internet.

MS Windows workgroup configuration

See Windows 10 Support, Windows 8 Support and Windows 7 Support for detailed version specific help.

If you are using a Microsoft operating system, you must ensure that your workgroup is the same as the workgroup name of your server. (In a subsequent chapter, we'll explain how this can be set using the web-based server manager.) Go to the "start menu", right click on computer, select "Properties", select the link "change Settings", then click on "Change" Tab. In the field for "Workgroup", type your "workgroup".

  • For Windows 10 See Windows 10 support page for specific details Go to the "start menu", right click on computer, select "System", select the link "System Info", then click on "Change settings" Tab. In the field for "Computer name, domain and workgroup settings", type your "workgroup".
  • For Windows 7
  • For Windows 8

Go to the Top right corner of your Desktop, select "settings" and then "PC Info", select the link "change Settings", then click on "Change" Tab.. Enter your "workgroup" value in the Worgroup field and select "OK".

MS Windows Domain configuration

See Windows 10 Support and Windows 8 Support and Windows 7 Support for detailed version specific help.

SME Server can be configured to be the "Workgroup and Domain Controller" for your network, here users do not need accounts on individual PC's but authenticate against the Server. (In a subsequent chapter, we'll explain how this can be set using the web-based server manager.)

See bugzilla:7172 re registery entries to facilitate the joining of Windows 7 and Windows 8 PCs to a SME Server "Workgroup and Domain Controller" also Slow Login with Win7 and Win8 and forum entry http://forums.contribs.org/index.php/topic,49229.0.html for further info.

Connecting to a Domain

See Windows 10 Support and Windows 8 Support and Windows 7 Support for detailed version specific help.

  • For Windows 7

To connect a windows Seven client to your domain, Go to the "start menu", right click on computer, select "Properties", select the link "change Settings", then click on "Change" Tab. Enter your servers "Domain" value in the domain field and 'Connect'. Enter the username of admin(*) with the servers admin password when asked, and you should get back the response 'Connected to workgroup'.

(*) Admin or any user in the 'Domain Admins' group can join the domain.

  • For Windows 8

To connect a windows 8 client to your SME Server Domain, Go to the Top right corner of your Desktop, select "settings" and then "PC Info", select the link "change Settings", then click on "Change" Tab.. Enter your servers "Domain" value in the domain field and 'Connect'. Enter the username of admin(*) with the servers admin password when asked, and You should get back the response 'Connected to Domain'. Reboot the computer to reach the Domain.

(*) Admin or any user in the 'Domain Admins' group can join the domain.

Setting Windows Admin Rights

If you are using SME Server as a domain controller and the windows workstations have joined the domain then by adding users to special groups you are able to change the rights a users has on that workstation. See Here for details.

Setting up network drives

If you are using SME Server as a domain controller and the workstations have joined the domain you can automate drive mapping and syncronise the PC time with the netlogon.bat file

Note: Chapter 13 has a method for admin to edit the netlogon.bat file without using the command line.

nano -w /home/e-smith/files/samba/netlogon/netlogon.bat
REM To set the time when clients logon to the domain:
net time \\servername /set /yes
REM To map a home directory to drive h:
net use h: /home /persistent:no
net use j: \\servername\ibay1 /persistent:no
net use p: \\servername\ibay2 /persistent:no
if exist Z: net use Z: /del /yes

and reset file to dos format

unix2dos /home/e-smith/files/samba/netlogon/netlogon.bat