OpenAFS client for the Macintosh: installation and configuration

10 May 2004

SLAC Home Mac Home

Download OpenAFS Client from
-Click on 'Latest Release' under 'Downloads' in the left column.
-Click on 'Mac OS 10.3' under 'Contents' in the main frame.
-Click on 'OpenAFS.pkg.tar.gz' to begin download
-Double-click the 'OpenAFS.pkg' file on the desktop once the download is complete. This runs the installer.
-Follow the installer instructions to complete the installation.
-You will be prompted to restart your machine once the installation is complete. Do so.

Configure the OpenAFS Client:
- Once the system is rebooted, select 'Find...' from the 'File' menu in the Finder (or type Command-F).
- In the Find dialog, perform a search on the whole 'Macintosh HD' startup disk for items that have their 'Visibility' (selected in the first drop-down menu) set to 'invisible items' (selected in the second drop-down menu), and which have their 'Name' (selected in the first drop-down menu of the second search citeria) set to contain the word 'ThisCell' (entered into the text box for the file name).
- This should return a list containing a file named "ThisCell.sample". Click on this file to see its path in the lower pane.
- Double-click its parent folder, "etc", to open it.
- Drag the "ThisCell.sample" file to the desktop - this creates a copy of it on the desktop.
- Click the new copy of the file on the desktop to select it, and then select "Get Info…" from the File menu (or Command-I).
- Expand the "Name and Extension" pane to show the full file-name, and then delete the ".sample" portion of the file name.
- Close the "ThisCell Info" window. This will bring up a dialog asking "Are you sure you want to remove the extension ".sample"?". Click the "OK" button.
- Now holding down the "Control" key, click on the "ThisCell" file on the desktop. This brings up a popup menu.
- Select "Open With", and select "TextEdit" from the list of applications.
- In TextEdit, delete the current contents of the file, and replace with the text "".
- Save the file and close it.
- Holding down the "Option" key, drag the "ThisCell" file from the desktop back into the "etc" folder which should still be open.  This will put a copy of the file in the "etc" folder. The file copy may take about 10 seconds to appear coherently in the "etc" folder.
- Restart your Mac.
- Once the Mac has restarted, the AFS volume should show up automatically on your desktop. You can now see files/folders on the AFS volume, but you still do not not have your normal AFS access privileges because you have not yet been authenticated.
- To authenticate yourself on AFS, you now need to open the "Terminal" program found in the "Utilities" folder in the "Applications" folder.
- In a terminal window type "klog <username>" and hit <Enter>, subsituting your own AFS account name in place of <username>.
- It will then ask you for your password. Enter it and hit <Enter>.
- This gives you a kerberos ticket which is good for 23 hours. Once the 23 hours is up, you will need to re-login again to get another. Once the ticket is valid however, you have the full privileges associated with your AFS account.

Warning for this version of OpenAFS for Macintosh
- When working on files stored in AFS space, you should first copy the file to your local hard drive and then work on it from there.
- Once you are done working on the file, you can copy it back to AFS space.

This is done because of a known problem with the current release of OpenAFS for Macintosh - in that opening a file directly from the AFS server (e.g. double-clicking the file's icon in the Finder window), or saving an open file back onto the AFS server directly from within an application can sometimes cause a kernel panic, which essentially means that you will have to reboot your Mac, and hence you will lose any data that has not yet been saved.
This problem is not common, but by following the steps above you should be able to avoid it completely. Applications for which this has occurred regularly include "SubEthaEdit", and "XCode", and it has also been seen to occur irreguarly with "Microsoft Word".

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