Friday, September 01, 2006

Mac OS X; Storing your files; Connecting remotely


The Finder is the basic component of the Mac OS X filesystem. You can use the Finder in a few ways:

1. If it says Finder in the upper left of the screen (as opposed to the name of some other application), you can open a new Finder window by going to the File menu and selecting "New Finder Window" or by pressing Command + N (Command is the Apple key near the bottom left of your keyboard).

2. If it doesn't say Finder in the upper left corner of the screen, you can click on the rectangular face icon in the bottom left of your screen (it's on a strip of icons called the Dock). This will bring a Finder window to the front of the screen or possibly open a new Finder window. If you do this, the upper left corner of your screen should say "Finder" near a blue Apple icon.

3. If it doesn't say Finder in the upper left corner of the screen, you can also click on the desktop and his will put you in Finder mode.

If you open a Finder window in one of these ways and you will probably see several items in the upper left section: Network, "CAMIL ??" (where ?? is some number), and Classes. Network won't be very helpful.

If you select "CAMIL ??" then you'll see the following items in the main part of the Finder window: Applications, Developer, Local, and Temp. All of these are directories that are stored LOCALLY -- on the computer's hard disk.

/Applications: This is where programs, including Max/MSP, are stored. You won't probably be storing much stuff here. You can, however, put short cuts for various applications on your Dock by dragging the appropriate icon from the /Applications folder to the Dock.

/Developer: You probably won't be using this directory (folder). Applications and utilities for software developers are stored here.

/Local: Again, you probably won't be using this directory. Lisp applications are stored here.

/Temp: You CAN store things here. See below for more information.

Notice that there is also an icon for "CAMIL ??" on the upper right part of the desktop. If you double click this icon, you will get a new Finder window that displays the above-mentioned local directories.

Right below the "CAMIL ??" icon on the desktop is an icon that says "Classes". You can double click this and it will take open a Finder window that contains several folders for various classes. There is a shortcut for this in your finder window also. The Classes directory is not actually stored on the machine you're working on. Instead, it is stored on the CAMIL file server. The Classes directory contains sub-directories for several classes, including our own, MUS404A. You CAN store things in here too (but see below).

In the lower left portion of the Finder window you'll see shortcut icons for several other directories. The icon that looks like a house and is labeled with your username is a shortcut to your Home directory on the CAMIL Server. Everybody with a CAMIL account has a Home directory on the server and there is currently a 2 GB storage limit for data there (this is under review and may be lowering soon due to limited server space). Your Home directory contains sub-directories such as /Desktop, /Documents, /Movies, /Music, /Pictures. You'll see shortcut icons for those places over to the left too.


There are three main places: /Temp, Classes, and your Home directory. Here are my suggestions for using these three places:

Home: You can store whatever you want here. As mentioned above, the disk quota is presently 2 GB but will probably be lowered shortly due to a lack of server space. The CAMIL server is backed up nightly, so this is a safe place to store important things. Also, only YOU can access the files in your Home directory.

Temp: As this is a local directory on the machine you're using rather than a directory on the CAMIL server, it is not backed up (although the computers in CAMIL are pretty stable). Also, there is no guarantee that somebody else won't be using that particular computer next time you come in, so it might be difficult to get to your files. And anybody may be able to use the files you store here. HOWEVER, there is plenty of space here. It may be good to store stuff you're currently using here temporarily (hence the name "Temp") because of the local location. For example, writing audio files to Temp is a much better idea than writing them over the internet to your Home account on the CAMIL server. Writing any kind of file over the internet takes a bit longer than writing it on the local hard drive. You may want to store patches that you're using currently here and then copy them to your Home directory on the CAMIL server at the end of your work session so they are safer.

Classes: Should be used primarily for things you want to share with other class members. You could put Max patches that you want to share here for instance, or interesting articles. Classes is on the CAMIL server and is backed up nightly, so it's a safe place to store things. Please don't put a bunch of your own files here simply because you've run out of space in your CAMIL Home folder (be nice to the server! thanks).


You can connect remotely to the CAMIL server to access your Home directory or the Classes directory. This will let you access your files or your classmates' files from home or somewhere else. Here's how:

*Using Macintosh OS X:
1. In the Finder, go to "Go" and "Connect to Server" (or use the shortcut Command + K).
2. Enter "" (without the quotes) as the Server Address
3. Press Connect
4. Select "Registered User" and put in your CAMIL username and password.
5. Press Connect
6. Select the directories you would like to access are probably either Classes or your Home directory (here it's represented by your CAMIL username). Select the appropriate directory and click Go to "mount" the directory on your computer.
7. An icon for the mounted directory will appear on your computer's desktop and a Finder window will open for the mounted directory.
**Important: when you are done using the directory (and especially before powering down your computer) you should unmount the directory from your computer. To do this, pick one of the following:
1. Drag the icon for the mounted directory to the trash (which turns into an eject symbol);
2. Select the icon for the mounted directory and then select "Eject ...." from the File menu; or
3. Select the icon and press Command + E.

*Using a PC: I'm less clear on this one, but I know that you can download a program called WinSCP that will do pretty much what the Mac OS X system does when you "Connect to Server" as above. You would also enter "" as the server address and then use your CAMIL account username and password to connect. You'll probably get taken directly to your Home folder. You can get to the Classes folder by following the following path from the bottom level: /Shared Items/Classes/MUS404A.


Blogger Steve Taylor said...

Thanks Jake - it works for me just fine from home! This is useful info, I really appreciate it. -Steve

11:12 AM, September 02, 2006  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home