AFP support

Want new functionality in Bubba? Discuss it here.
ncollingridge
Posts: 10
Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

AFP support

Post by ncollingridge » 09 Jun 2007, 07:21

I really like the Bubba product and I am currently in the market for a NAS for my network to replace a power-hungry server. However the one thing that might push me in the direction of something like the Infrant products is the lack of native AFP support. Any chance of implementing this in the near future?

bjorn
Posts: 88
Joined: 03 Jan 2007, 09:02

Post by bjorn » 10 Jun 2007, 05:06

I don't now exactly what AFP is, but a search amongst the repositories found this:

Package: netatalk
Architecture: any
Depends: netbase (>= 2.02), ${shlibs:Depends}
Description: Appletalk user binaries for Linux
Netatalk is an implementation of the AppleTalk Protocol Suite for
BSD-derived systems. The current release contains support for
EtherTalk Phase I and II, DDP, RTMP, NBP, ZIP, AEP, ATP, PAP, ASP, and
AFP.

And AFP is listed in the supported section. Although, i don't own a MAC and have never tried this, i'm GUESSING that it's merely a matter of configuration from that point. :)

/Bjorn

ncollingridge
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Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

Post by ncollingridge » 10 Jun 2007, 05:34

Is this supported through the Bubba UI? If so, I'd suggest that you list AFP support as a feature - It's something that Apple users will definitely be very keen to see, and is one of the reasons that Infrant products are currently so attractive. Although Macs, as you undoubtedly know, support a very wide range of protocols, using an AFP file server is definitely more seamless.

Nick

bjorn
Posts: 88
Joined: 03 Jan 2007, 09:02

Post by bjorn » 10 Jun 2007, 06:25

no, as far as i can tell, this is not supported through the bubba WebUI.

But remember that Bubba runs Debian! Any package available in repositories will most certainly work with Bubba server (ok, as long as the hardware support it... wifi won't be supported on bubba unless you get a wifi-card... you get the point)

/Bjorn
ps. i'm NOT associated with excito, i'm a Bubba owner, that's all. excito might have a very different view on supported stuff than me. ds :)

ncollingridge
Posts: 10
Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

Post by ncollingridge » 10 Jun 2007, 14:33

Thanks for elucidating that. However there's no way that I want to get involved in the complexities of installing things on Linux - I've heard too many horror stories about things going wrong and it never seems to be straightforward like it is on more user-considerate operating systems. Great for tinkerers, but I just don't have the time for the hassle!

Thanks again for your response, though - I just hope that Excito are listening as well.

Nick

wertigon
Posts: 9
Joined: 10 Jun 2007, 12:31
Location: Sweden

Post by wertigon » 11 Jun 2007, 08:52

As an Ubuntu/Debian user, I have to say your fears are greatly unfounded.

It's as simple as typing "apt-get install netatalk" on the command line, and might involve opening a text file or two with nano. (You vi users, hush, this is a newbie :P)

Anyhow, simply follow this howto. Enjoy!

ncollingridge
Posts: 10
Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

Post by ncollingridge » 11 Jun 2007, 08:57

If it really is as trivial as you say, why don't Excito just hide the process behind the UI? Sounds like it would only be about 10 mins work for them.

wertigon
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Joined: 10 Jun 2007, 12:31
Location: Sweden

Post by wertigon » 12 Jun 2007, 00:13

Well, I'm not employed by Excito either, so I might be mistaken, But I think the short answer is because of all the time to develop said configuration scripts that has to be written.

Long answer: The Debian repositories contain tens of thousands of packages; Bubba uses maybe a hundred of these. Each new app requires careful testing and there isn't a standard uniform way of config files in the Debian system. The work of taking an application, learning how to configure it, and even better configure it *well*, isn't exactly trivial, and can take everywhere from a few days to a couple of months, depending on the complexity of the app. Excito simply doesn't have the resources to support everyone and everything, so they focus on a few core apps and more or less ignore the rest, for good or worse.

Still, there's the Deb repository for those who wants to install something extra, so us users aren't completely left to our own devices. It's quite handy to have, but yeah, it's not exactly something you want to give to your grandma. And neither is a console. ;)

johannes
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Joined: 31 Dec 2006, 07:12
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Post by johannes » 12 Jun 2007, 02:37

And yes, we (Excito) are listening, carefully. Agreeing with all of the above (thanks bjorn and wertigon), we simply cannot impelment and support all applications people would like to use, even though we are continously working on increasing the portfolio.

We'll add AFP to our "wanted" list, and if more users request it, we'll perhaps implement it in the future. Thanks for letting us know. After all, our customers needs is everything to us.
/Johannes (Excito co-founder a long time ago, but now I'm just Johannes)

ncollingridge
Posts: 10
Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

Post by ncollingridge » 12 Jun 2007, 03:48

Thanks to both of you for the comments. As I suspected, adding AFP support seems to be more complicated than was suggested by wetigon above.

I do get frustrated by linux bods who blithely say "Oh, you just do this and then this and you're ready to go". I am pretty technically savvy with both Macs and PCs, but linux is just not straightforward enough for people who don't enjoy fiddling and just want to get their work done. I think it can only be a mindset thing, and linux enthusiasts don't seem to understand the mindset of the average person who doesn't delight in spending lots of time fiddling to get things working. This is the fundamental thing that will always stop linux getting any traction on the desktop until this is properly addressed.

Thanks to johannes for his comment - I hope that Excito bear in mind that the value of features in market acceptability of a product cannot always be measured in terms of the number of people asking for them. Many people will take a quick look at a product, say "It doesn't have the feature I need" and move on to the next product that does. No feedback, just a lost sale. And you will probably get disproportionately more contact from technically savvy people wanting esoteric features that may not get you many sales, compared to some more mainstream features that will appeal more to the technically less savvy.

Clive
Posts: 144
Joined: 07 Mar 2007, 07:15

Post by Clive » 13 Jun 2007, 03:22

ncollingridge wrote:Thanks to both of you for the comments. As I suspected, adding AFP support seems to be more complicated than was suggested by wetigon above.

I do get frustrated by linux bods who blithely say "Oh, you just do this and then this and you're ready to go". I am pretty technically savvy with both Macs and PCs, but linux is just not straightforward enough for people who don't enjoy fiddling and just want to get their work done. I think it can only be a mindset thing, and linux enthusiasts don't seem to understand the mindset of the average person who doesn't delight in spending lots of time fiddling to get things working. This is the fundamental thing that will always stop linux getting any traction on the desktop until this is properly addressed.
I think you are being a little unfair to 'Linux bods' and also how Bubba works. I totally agree about Linux being a nightmare to setup and maintain. My main PC had been Linux for the past year and it was a daily struggle to keep it up and running and getting updates to install correctly. As to that, I have recently retired my Linux PC and returned to Vista. This is partially due to Bubba which does all the tasks that I struggled to do with my Linux PC, email server, media server, web server, file server.....

Although Bubba is Linux based you do not have to worry about it and you get all the benfits of Linux being a very stable system without the hassle. The key benefit of Bubba is that it is based on Debian Linux sources. This gives a whole world of extra possibilities of things you can load onto the Bubba. Most of us have loaded and are running MySQL / Blogs etc. The benefit being that because all Bubba users are using the same hardware platform loaded with the same software, then the HOWTO's can be very precise and exact. You can follow the HOWTO's and not need too much Linux knowledge to be confident it will work out.

Wertigon is quite correct, it should be as easy as typing "apt-get install netatalk" and then you will be led through the installation. However as I am not too sure what AFP does (or is) then it may need some additional configuration files to be updated. I am sure there are people on here ('Linux bods') who could help you out with this. Just googling 'netatalk linux howto' brings up pages of results. It's even easier for Bubba as Debian sources have the netatalk package compiled and ready to install and then just to follow the HOWTO's to configure up your directories -

eg. - http://gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_Share_Directories_via_AFP

Bubba is a great little server with the most popular server applications working straight out of the box. Because it runs on a stable Linux platform you can install more esoteric applications like AFP

ncollingridge
Posts: 10
Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

Post by ncollingridge » 13 Jun 2007, 05:09

Thanks for your comments.

I did take a look at the wiki page you linked, but as per normal it posed almost as many questions as it answered. What is "emerging"? This is not explained. Also how does one "use an initscript"? What does the command rc-update do? I assume one just executes this at a command line, but the text doesn't say what the command does. And how does one "rebuild netatalk using the new ebuild ".

All of this may be straightforward to you since you have the knowledge already, but this is a very good example of how obtuse linux is to a novice. And this is something that's meant to be easy! Why can't all this stuff be made more straightforward so that more people can actually use linux without having an IT department on tap?

wertigon
Posts: 9
Joined: 10 Jun 2007, 12:31
Location: Sweden

Post by wertigon » 13 Jun 2007, 11:23

I understand how it can be confusing to someone who hasn't ever done it before. What you need to do is:

1. Download and install the neccessary packages

Code: Select all

sudo apt-get install netatalk
2. Configure the netatalk config file

Follow these two sections in the Gentoo wiki and ignore everything else, it's not relevant for Debian.

http://gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_Share_Dire ... g_netatalk
http://gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_Share_Dire ... guring_AFP

3. Start the service

Code: Select all

sudo /etc/init.d/afpd start
Note, this is just the theory. I haven't tried it myself, and that last step may or may not work, so if anyone with access to a Bubba could figure it out I think lots of headache will be cleared. Hope that helps. :) I know it isn't as simple as checking a checkbox and be done with it, though.

And for the record I really think Excito should consider adding AppleTalk support to the Bubba, since it's in their company vision of building a transparent, easy to use fileserver and quite a few people use MacOS(X). Just my 2 cents though. :)

[edit]Oh, and Clive, with regards to Linux being a pain to set up and maintain; that hasn't been my experience with Ubuntu, in fact I think it does an excellent job of staying out of my way even with default config, which is something Vista fails to do repeatedly. Of course, YMMV.[/edit]

ncollingridge
Posts: 10
Joined: 09 Jun 2007, 07:17

Post by ncollingridge » 13 Jun 2007, 12:59

Thanks, guys, you really are a very helpful lot. And understanding, too!

Clive
Posts: 144
Joined: 07 Mar 2007, 07:15

Post by Clive » 14 Jun 2007, 03:26

wertigon wrote: [edit]Oh, and Clive, with regards to Linux being a pain to set up and maintain; that hasn't been my experience with Ubuntu, in fact I think it does an excellent job of staying out of my way even with default config, which is something Vista fails to do repeatedly. Of course, YMMV.[/edit]
I'm using Suse, it's fine and stable but installing new software and updates is a real pain, it always takes alot of tinkering. Once it's working though it's fine and stable. Vista has it's own problems, I have to reboot it at least once a day for some reason or another.

Saying that, Bubba has been up and running for 30 days, I can't remember the last time I had to log into it. It just works !

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