Networking and File Transfer Software

1.3.1 - How can I get files from my PC to my Mac?

Most Macs that can run System 7.1 or higher will also work with PC Exchange, which will allow PC-formatted disks to be read in both the floppy and external drives such as Zip drives. If you need a copy of PC Exchange and don't want to download all 40MB or so of the System 7.5.3 Unified Release, you can get a copy of PC Exchange 1.0.4 via FTP. (Use a real FTP client if your web browser doesn't work.) However, if you don't have this option, there are a few ways you can get your PC to write Mac-format disks. Probably the best site on this topic is located here. It lists different programs for reading and writing HFS (the native Macintosh format) disks on a PC. Of those, TransMac ($64 shareware) is probably the best. The PC program can be found here and will enable your PC to write HD Mac floppies. Note that PC floppy drives cannot write Mac-format 800K floppies due to physical differences in the read/write mechanisms, but with TransMac or a similar program, PCs can write 1.4MB Mac floppies.

When you download files that you'll want to transfer to your Mac, try, if possible, to download BinHex files. They're plain text and are less likely to get munged somehow during the transfer.

If you don't have any way of using floppies to transfer from one computer to another (i.e., you have only an 800K drive on the Mac), check out the excellent StarGate program for null modem transfers. It will take a tad bit more effort than floppies but it's a very nice program and works pretty well for transferring small amounts of data. (Large amounts of data don't send so fast over a 56Kbps link as you modem users may know.)

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1.3.2 - How can I run a file server under System 6?

Steve Strahm managed to track down an old Chooser extension called "JC Remote" that gives file sharing capabilities to System 6 Macs. As you know, Apple did not include support for File Sharing until System 7, and the most common option for System 6, Public Folder, isn't really adequate. You can get JC Remote from the UMich archive.

The other option would be to track down AppleShare Server v2 or earlier, which will also run just fine on System 6 and runs much faster than System 7's built-in File Sharing.

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1.3.3 - How can I connect a Mac running OS X to one running System 6?

Marten van de Kraats has posted the latest information from several sources on his System 6 Heaven.

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1.3.4 - How can I share printers on my network?

Phil Beesley has written up a nice tutorial on how to use an OS X machine to share a printer on a network for the use of virtually any Mac. If you don't have an OS X box, one of your options is similar: you can use the instructions Phil outlines on almost any *nix distribution running on virtually any hardware. If you don't have an OS X or *nix box, you need a printer that can be shared by Mac OS-based means, which generally means any printer capable of using the LaserWriter 8 driver (basically all PostScript-capable laser printers) or an Apple StyleWriter of some sort, which can be shared using the Printer Sharing capabilities built into the OS. ImageWriters with a LocalTalk card can be shared; you'll need AppleShare Server or AppleShare Print Server to share an ImageWriter without a LocalTalk card. It isn't clear if non-Apple printers can be shared via these means or not using the Mac OS, though most will work with gimp-print on *nix systems as outlined in Phil's instructions.

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1.3.5 - Can I net-boot my 68K Mac?

Yes, but only if you have an Ethernet card with one of two very rare third-party ROM upgrades. Both Sonic's The Diskless Mac and Mauswerks's BootToob used a ROM chip to replace the factory ROM chip in an installed Ethernet card. This new ROM would connect to the network at startup, load a boot image into RAM on the client Mac, disconnect from the network, and continue booting.

The original cost was $139-149 per client and required an AppleShare Server running MacTCP (or a UNIX server in the case of Sonic's TDM) on the network. When more ROM part number/ID information is available, it will be posted here; if you have any, e-mail me.

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Last Modified on 06 November 2013
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