Apple Training Day 1

Today was very busy. We covered a lot of topics, and jumped right in. Today we did 3 out of 14 chapters in the training manual.

We first did installation and setup of both our servers and our clients, a G5 and a 12″ powerbook respectively. In the Schedule, the itinerary for the day was: Introduction, Installation and setup, Network Setup and Network Encryption. We got through Network Setup. Our installation of OS X server was completely headless and remote, based off of CDs. We went over netboot, and netinstall installations, but only did CD installations for our exercises. We formatted and partitioned the drives, over SSH and did the installs. Then we created set ups using server assistant, and saving XML config files, which we later SCP’ed over to the server. This is a really cool thing. You can set up a script to dump a bunch of XML config files which you can them use to config a bunch of servers at once.

Network Setup included setting up the server to be a router, creating static routes, creating new ipfw rules, setting up NAT and DNS. What we did in half a day is probably enough material to teach a weeks worth of classes. We moved pretty quickly through this stuff, because these are all prereqs for taking this class in the first place. Before signing up, you should have a pretty good handle on TCP/IP, routing, firewalls, DNS, and NAT. I’m definitely a little behind the curve here, but I’m holding my own.

This is the hardest, most demanding class that Apple currently offers, and it’s no joke. You need to know pretty much everything there is to know about the client, most of the GUI server utilities, and a good deal of the Mac unique command line utilities on top of the standard linux/unix commands.

Even if you’re not the best Admin in the world though, there is something to be said for challenging yourself. I learned a LOT today about OS X’s capabilities, and how to do things I didn’t know were possible. If you know the concepts of networking, and UNIX, you’ll get a lot out of this class even if you’re not getting 100%. And if you don’t catch something, you have a huge training manual to review that holds information you can’t find anywhere.

Time for me to review what we did today. I’m taking test on Friday after the last class, and from what I heard, when they did this last time with 10.2, none of the students passed. I’m going to do my best to get things down and pass on the first shot.