Do you have designers who work from macOS but need access to Adobe Creative Suite files?
And these files are stored on a local file server that is not suitable for remote access?
Unlike Windows devices, a "mapped drive" on an Apple macOS device is a "volume" that is mounted and visible from a mac Finder application. If the mac machine and the corporate file servers are on the same local network, you can launch mac Finder, select Go > Connect to Server, and then enter smb://DNSname/sharename or smb://IP-Address/sharename to connect to a specific network share for a corporate server with a specific IP address. However, if the macOS device is in a remote location and a virtual private network (VPN) is not used, the macOS device cannot mount the file server's network share because the file server's IP address is not on the same network.
To connect to the file server with a "mapped drive" via HTTPS RESTful protocols, pretty much all solutions before use macFUSE. macFUSE is a mac file system in userspace that allows developers to write a kernel-mode file system driver with normal application programming outside the kernel. macFUSE was a viable solution until the release of macOS Monterey and the Apple M1-based devices. The main reason for this was that Apple pushes kernel mode applications away from the macOS kernel. macFUSE is not easy to use under macOS Monterey and another solution is needed.
We have a solution that supports macOS Monterey on both Apple M1 and Apple Intel devices.
When the Triofox drive application is installed, there is a mounted volume in the macOS Finder. On the Finder volume, you will see files and folders that you can access. You can double-click a file to open it. If the file is not already in the local cache, the application requests the file and downloads it from the file server via HTTP streaming. Once it is in the local cache, local applications can open and edit it. Once editing is complete and the file is closed by the applications, the file is uploaded back to the file server.
Sometimes you prefer to work on a local folder and then synchronize it with the file server. If the mounted volume is like an on-demand file access, the local folder is like a folder that is always offline and there is always a local copy of it in the two-way sync folder.
With the Triofox Drive application installed, you can right-click on a file or folder on the Finder volume that represents the Triofox Drive and initiate file sharing via a web link. The file sharing feature can be turned on or off depending on the organization's security policies.
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Gladinet's Triofox solution makes the cloud file access solution interoperable with existing file server network shares and provides offline folder capabilities. It has integration with Active Directory, cloud drive mapping, global file locking and NTFS permission control. These native integrations make the file sharing solution an extension of the current file server rather than another data silo that takes away data.
A mapped drive over the HTTPS channel to the corporate file server is an important feature. Employees are familiar with a mapped drive and no additional training is required.
Enterprise users already have enterprise identities in Active Directory and the associated Active Directory federated service and SAML single sign-on. They do not need additional credentials to access a file sharing solution.
Most file sharing solutions provide manual file locking in the form of "check in" and "check out". Triofox provides automatic file locking by detecting requests to open files. When Microsoft Word opens a file, file locking is automatically initiated and automatically terminated when file processing is complete.
Finally, integration with Active Directory and NTFS permissions makes it easier for system administrators to set up permission control. The permissions features set Gladinet's solution apart from the competition.
Do you want to add these features to the VPN?
A traditional VPN requires a stable and active connection to the corporate firewall to function. A disruption of the Internet or an interrupted connection to the firewall interrupts employees' work with unsaved files. With offline editing, remote workers can save and edit documents without an active connection and save the files asynchronously to a corporate file server once the connection is restored.
A firewall provider typically offers VPN without an always-on feature. Always-on VPN requires more infrastructure components, such as an identity server, an authentication server, a compatible client OS, etc. However, most modern cloud applications are always-on, allow offline access to files and folders, and allow files to be stored on a local device before being synchronized with the online servers.
Accessing file servers is hardly high performance, because when a VPN allows it, file access communicates via the SMB/CIFS protocol. First of all, the SMB protocol is not a data streaming protocol with many requests and responses. If we can switch to HTTP streaming for file transfer, performance will improve. Second, HTTP-based file transfer traffic can take advantage of a global content delivery network, so HTTP is faster for cross-continent transfer.