Olly Smith

Netatalk on an Ubuntu virtual machine

I tend to develop on a MacBook running OS X Leopard. In order to keep my main Leopard system clean and tidy, I use Parallels desktop to run my development environments in virtual machines. Parallels is jolly good at sharing data with Windows virtual machines, but a bit lacking when it comes to Linux. Hence I’ve started using netatalk on all my Linux virtual machines to access their disk drives from OS X.

Lots has been written about what it takes to install and tweak netatalk to get it to talk happily with Leopard, so I won’t go into the problems here. All you need to know should be found at the following links.

The process below is an amalgamation of all the instructions from those pages, put together to form the process I go through to set up netatalk on my virtual machines.

Firstly, one needs to download the netatalk source, install all of its dependencies and build it with ssl enabled.

$ mkdir -p ~/src/netatalk
$ cd ~/src/netatalk
$ sudo aptitude install devscripts cracklib2-dev dpkg-dev libssl-dev
$ apt-get source netatalk
$ sudo apt-get build-dep netatalk
$ cd netatalk-2.0.3
$ sudo su
# DEB_BUILD_OPTIONS=ssl dpkg-buildpackage -us -uc
# debi
# echo "netatalk hold" | dpkg --set-selections
# exit

That should have build and installed the netatalk package, and told the debian packaging system to not replace it if a new version appears in the online repositories.

The only netatalk service I’m interested is the file sharing one, so the rest can be turned off in /etc/default/netatalk:

# Set which daemons to run (papd is dependent upon atalkd):

Finally, to enable zeroconf/bonjour discovery of the shares on the system, install avahi-daemon and add a service definition to /etc/avahi/services/afpd.service to advertise the afp service.

<?xml version="1.0" standalone=‘no’?><!–*-nxml-*–>
<!DOCTYPE service-group SYSTEM "avahi-service.dtd">

And that’s it! You should now be able to reliably mount your home directory on the Linux virtual machine from OS X.