Need help with setting up Macs in a school

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Greetings all,
I am an "old hand" in Windows based machines and networking in general with more than 35 years experience. In the last month, I have become responsible for an elementary school's tech. This includes 150 Macbook Air 11 inch, 35 Macbook Air 13 inch, 5 Mac-mini, 5 Apple TV, gobs of ancient PCs and laser printers. I am hamstrung by a networking infrastructure that is suspicious of Macbooks and scared-to-death of students on the internet. Half of the equipment runs wirelessly while the older half is wired. I have two current issues that I would like help with. While I have supported Apple products in the past, I feel that I need a good primer on the basic structures of modern Macbooks and Mac-minis. My second issue is that the school district provides no on-line disk spce for student work. I was thinking of using on of the minis, upgrading to Yosemite, load Apple server onto it and hang a couple of 4Tb drives on the USB ports. It would be nice to do a Raid-1 config, or use the second drive for backups. Any ideas or concerns? By the way, almost every Apple product is running 10.9.5 Maverick.
Sorry for being pendantic, but I do work in a school ;)
 
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You've posted a help question in Community Suggestions and Feedback. This part of the forum a place for suggestions and comments about the Mac-Forums Community itself. You probably won't find much help in this forum. Considering the scope of your post (Mac Minis, Macbooks and Apple TV's), I'm not entirely sure which forum to post your questions. Perhaps the general OS X - Operating System forum would get you some help. If that doesn't seem right for you, have a look at the catagories on the Mac Forums Home Page and choose a forum you think would be of help.

Hope that helps point you in the right direction.
 
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Greetings all,
I am an "old hand" in Windows based machines and networking in general with more than 35 years experience. In the last month, I have become responsible for an elementary school's tech. This includes 150 Macbook Air 11 inch, 35 Macbook Air 13 inch, 5 Mac-mini, 5 Apple TV, gobs of ancient PCs and laser printers. I am hamstrung by a networking infrastructure that is suspicious of Macbooks and scared-to-death of students on the internet. Half of the equipment runs wirelessly while the older half is wired. I have two current issues that I would like help with. While I have supported Apple products in the past, I feel that I need a good primer on the basic structures of modern Macbooks and Mac-minis. My second issue is that the school district provides no on-line disk spce for student work. I was thinking of using on of the minis, upgrading to Yosemite, load Apple server onto it and hang a couple of 4Tb drives on the USB ports. It would be nice to do a Raid-1 config, or use the second drive for backups. Any ideas or concerns? By the way, almost every Apple product is running 10.9.5 Maverick.
Sorry for being pendantic, but I do work in a school
 
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Your Mac's Specs
iPhone 2G 8GB, 3X iPhone 4 8GB, iPhone 4 32GB, iPod Touch 4G 16GB, iPhone 7 256GB, iPad 2, iPad Air
for your second issue why not just use google drive or use flash drives if you know how to setup a mac server go for it otherwise i would go with google drive beacause of the large amount of space they give you
 
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MacInWin

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While I have supported Apple products in the past, I feel that I need a good primer on the basic structures of modern Macbooks and Mac-minis.
What structure? Hardware or OS X? If OS X, there is a series by Oreilly called "The Missing Manual" and there should be one for Mavericks. They may even have editions for the individual hardware, I didn't look. And with the price of WD MyBook drives down as low as $140 for 4 TB, a Raid configuration shouldn't be that expensive to do, if the Mini supports USB3.
 

vansmith

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I am hamstrung by a networking infrastructure that is suspicious of Macbooks and scared-to-death of students on the internet.
Can you be more specific about how your network is "suspicious" of the MacBooks? Basic networking operations should be fine but it is possible that you might run into issues if you're trying to manage users over something like Open Directory.

My second issue is that the school district provides no on-line disk spce for student work. I was thinking of using on of the minis, upgrading to Yosemite, load Apple server onto it and hang a couple of 4Tb drives on the USB ports. It would be nice to do a Raid-1 config, or use the second drive for backups.
I can't speak to the actual step up of a RAID configuration but I wonder how slow this will be. If you're managing a lot of content for a lot of users on external USB drives, you might run into a lot of issues.
 
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MacInWin

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This is a dupe of this. Can a MOD please merge them or just close this one?

For jriffel, please don't post duplicate posts.
 

chscag

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2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 8, iPhone 11, iPhone 12 Mini, Numerous iPods, Monterey
Please do not cross post or post duplicate threads. Your threads have been combined together here.
 
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Awesome but there is a money saving solution as well.

Question:

You said you didn't want the kids online correct but they need access to there files from a central server my big question. Is the server going to be online so staff can access it from home via VPN. If not and honestly if you have a older mini that cannot run the latest version of server or maverick and you where only using it for file storage you can purchase a copy of mac os x tiger server cheaper and because you are only using the machine as a file server not as a internet machine I.E playing youtube videos it would work great for that.

I took a older iMac white that could only run tiger leopard and snow leopard i purchased a copy of tiger server cheap with serial off of ebay a legit copy and i use the machine as a central file server.
really easy..
 

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