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Speedy and Secure AFP

June 30, 2006 | Computers

One of my long time complaints about using AFP (Apple Filing Protocol) has been its speed and my inability to get a secure connection. Well, all that changed this morning as I found some hints that fixed both speed and security issues. And it was under my nose the whole time…

The problem is that for some reason OS X Server, at least my install, is not advertising that it can connect AFP via SSH so the trickery has to happen on the client side. Initiating the connection from the client is the same – use Command-K or choose ‘Connect To Server’ from the Go menu.

Before sending your credentials click the cog icon in the lower left corner of the window and select Options. In here, deselect ‘Allow sending password in clear text’ – this will ensure that if a secure connection can’t be made it won’t fall back onto a plain connection.

Next check the box ‘Allow secure connections using SSH’. But here’s the kicker – turn off ‘Warn when connection does not support SSH’ – the problem with secure connections was that the server didn’t respond that it was OK and thus the connection would then default over to clear text. Without this check the connection is forced over SSH.

A side benefit for me is that this significantly improved the responsiveness of the server and increased transfer speeds between client and server. This just might allow me to put my music back on the server where it belongs since I can connect with decent speeds now.

4 Responses

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  • I’ll be honest on this one. I have no clue what you are talking about.

    I use AFP to connect Gilman’s publication server. (The server we use to store photos/articles/InDesign files for the newspaper and yearbook). I know it’s slow, but I don’t see any fancy Options button to boost my speed.

    Tom, July 3, 2006 10:01 pm | permalink

  • What version of OS X are you connecting with? And is AFP configured on the server to accept secure connections?

    Shawn, July 4, 2006 12:56 am | permalink

  • I’m using Tiger to connect to a Jaguar server. I’m not sure about accepting secure connections considering that my school is technologically behind about 10 years. (Probably not)

    Tom, July 8, 2006 6:17 am | permalink

  • Jaguar server can do secure AFP. You’d just need to set the preference on the server and the rest is done on Tiger.

    Shawn, July 8, 2006 11:01 am | permalink

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