Networking Macs & PCs Together


 windows and mac communicating

Here at Everon we primarily deal with the Windows environment. However, as Macs have become increasingly popular in the business world, we have gone with the tides and have been assisting in the troubleshooting of Macs, as well. At times, however, those two different types of operating systems can conflict with each other. Here’s how to solve that.

I, myself, have an Apple Mac on Mavericks OS and an HP machine on Windows 7 Professional OS. Sometimes I need to send files back and forth between the two, so my best idea was to set up a mapped drive between the two machines.

To do this, I started on my Windows PC and created a folder. Due to issues with security under user profiles, I created the folder on my C:\ drive called “Mac.” Once that was created, I right-clicked on the folder, and went into Properties ->Sharing and shared out the folder.

Mac1I then went into Advanced Sharing ->Permissions and ensured that “Everyone” was set to “Full Control.” When dealing with permissions in a Windows environment, it is always best to use your Security permissions as your more restrictive permissions. Sharing should always be set to allow everyone full control, and then you tighten it down from there. (Maybe I will write a blog post about that later. ;) )

Once that is done, go to the Security tab and set your permissions. For me, since I wasn’t too concerned with the security of this share, I simply allowed “Everyone” to have “Modify” permissions (not “Full Control”). The difference between “Modify” and “Full Control” in a Windows environment, is that “Full Control” allows the user/group the ability to change/edit permissions and take ownership. This could mean that someone can lock you out of your own share. “Modify”allows creation, deletion, editing of files and folders inside that share, but does not allow for modifying any properties of that share.

Mac2Now you can lock down your permissions to just your Mac (however, I am not going into that here). Once you have allowed “Everyone” the “Modify” rights to your share, you are ready to share it out on your Mac.

Go to your Mac, and in the Finder, go to GO ->Connect to Server:


I have modified the image to remove my computer name. However the address string you need to type is the following: smb://{computername}/{sharename}. If you hit the + symbol, it will add this location as your favorites, so you don’t have to type it repeatedly.

Once you have that set, hit “Connect.” This will pop up a new window requesting credentials. These are login credentials to your machine, so input your username and password, and hit Connect:



This maps the share to your Mac, and you are ready to go! As you can see, I have the mapped share set to show up on my Mac desktop, however this isn’t done automatically, as it merely opens the folder.

Mac5To get the share to show up on your desktop, go to Finder ->Preferences, and inside Preferences put a check mark on Connected Servers. That is it!

Mac6For more help with networking your office Macs to your office PCs, call our technicians at Everon at 1-888-244-1748!


Mac Tips for Techs: Troubleshooting network issues on a Mac



If you are used to Windows and have to troubleshoot networking on Mac, it’s a bit different of a process. The commands you are used to running in the cmd prompt on Windows don’t apply to a Mac, since the Mac uses a Linux-based OS. You can fudge your way through some basic commands. However, what if you need to do quick networking, and you don’t have the ability to Google-search your commands? Mac actually has a really nice built-in tool called Network Utility that can help when you’re trying to figure out why your Mac cannot connect online.

Network Utility can be found on your Mac by searching with the spotlight. In the upper right hand corner of your desktop, you can click on the magnifying glass and type: Network Utility. This will launch a window that gives you a multitude of commands to be run on the various network adapters available to you.

Jeff article 9-8-2014

If you need to see whether your adapter is getting an IP address from the DHCP server, simply check the Info tab. You can choose the adapter you need to check, and when it pulls up, you get the MAC address (called “hardware address” on a Mac), the IP address, link speed, status, vendor and model. On the right you also have packet information.

Your next tab is Netstat. This allows you 4 options:

  1. Display routing table information
  2. Display comprehensive network statistics for each protocol
  3. Display multicast information
  4. Display the state of all current socket connections

Your next tab is the Ping. This allows you to either enter an IP address or a hostname for pinging. It will also allow a constant ping, if necessary.

Your next tab is the nsLookup tab. This allows lookups on the IP address or hostname, depending on what you need.

Your next tab, like nsLookup, is Traceroute. It will allow both IP address or hostname, depending on your needs.

The next tab is something you normally don’t have built into PCs, but can be very useful, is the Whois search. You have many options for whois servers to use, or you can enter your own. This information is obtained when connected to the Internet, so you can use that feature here instead of going to one of the Whois servers.

The next tab is the Finger tab. This tab is not very well known, and it is a very early form of status updates, according to Apple. You probably will not find this tab very useful, however it is still built into Macs for use, if necessary.

The last tab is the Port Scan tab. This is a great tool if you are an engineer wanting to know what ports are open on a network. You can choose to only test ports between a certain amount, or you can test an entire network. The scan takes a bit to bring back the open ports, however, it can be very useful when working on a firewall.

Of course, all of these commands can be done through the terminal (Mac’s equivalent of the command prompt). However, if you are troubleshooting the reason that a Mac cannot connect to the Internet, and you are not a Mac Genius, this is the best tool for you.

If you need help with your Mac, we do have Mac engineers on staff here at Everon IT to help with your Mac needs. Call us at 888-244-1748, we’ll be glad to help!

Internal Networking for Your Home: Owning vs. Renting



In today’s world, it is critical to have just as good of an Internet connection at home as you do at work. For your standard IT technician, their own home usually has some level of networking involved, as we like to play at home as much as do at work. But what do you do if you are renting a home and cannot put holes in the walls? Typically, an IT-enthusiast who owns or is looking to own a home  will look at it to some degree and determine where they can put network drops, where they can run cabling, etc. But in a rental, the rule is usually “No holes in the walls!” So what can you do?

I have run into this issue many times as I move into new locations. In most cases my favorite thing to do is to get CAT6 cabling in bulk, run it along the floorboards (you can usually tuck cabling under a floorboard), and run it up and around door frames to wherever you want. This conceals the cabling very well and allows you to fully wire the home.

However, in my latest home I didn’t have this option, as we had vaulted ceilings and nowhere for the cable to go. So what do you do? You actually have a pretty neat option: Powerline Ethernet Adapters.








These little devices are very handy, and can be found at most electronic stores. These are the models I chose to use, after doing some research — and I will tell you why in a minute, but first let me explain what they are.

Powerline Ethernet Adapters take your networking cable and send it into the wall outlet to run along the ground to where another adapter is. They come in pairs, and you can plug one in to a wall outlet by your modem, and the other anywhere in the house, and you will automatically get networking from one end to the other. These are fantastic in those situations where you cannot run cabling.

Check out this diagram below to understand what can be done with these little devices:


I chose the Actiontec PWR511KR01 units because the pair had a great price ($36.51 on and they also offered some of the highest speeds at 500mbps. A lot of the various Powerline adapters that you will find on the market will be rated differently, as they have different speeds. Keep this in mind when choosing the right set of adapters. Will you be streaming video, games, or music, or just surfing the web? You will want to choose the right speeds for the right level of activity. TP-Link makes a 200mbps starter kit and also a 300mbps model; other decent kits are made by Linksys, Netgear, Belkin, and ZyXel.

You also have options as to whether you want single adapters or 2-4 port adapters. Personally, I bought the single adapters and then used existing Netgear 8-port switches to break out into the various devices I needed to wire up. This has been working great for over two years now, with no complaints. The devices are plug-and-play, no configuration needed, and I have only had to reset the device on the very rare occasion (you can tell when it’s needed because all of the link lights on the device turn red, in addition to not having any networking in your house).

Networking a home has become so easy, but of course they never replace the real thing (i.e CAT6 cabling throughout). If your house is on two different circuit breakers, they could be on two different lines, in which the adapters won’t reach each other, but keep in mind one mistake I made (which took us an unfortunate while to figure out): don’t put the power line adapters on a wall outlet that has a switch. We could not understand why we were not getting networking, when we came to find out we just had to flip the switch!

You also cannot put these devices on power strips, as they must only go into wall outlets. But for the price and the convenience, even someone who is not IT-savvy can handle something like these, and within minutes your entire home can be networked seamlessly!

If you have any questions about these devices, or anything network-related, feel free to call Everon at 1-888-244-1748, and we will be happy to help!

The Top 10 Things You Need to Know About Moving to a VoIP Solution




Hello again! Being an engineer and being subjected to a lot of technology that is out there, it’s easy for us to see and understand the big picture. Recently, however, it has come to my attention that there are certain items that we (engineers) see as normal day-to-day things, that some people just do not have a full understanding of. One of these is Voice-over-Internet Protocol, or VoIP. So today I am going to give a run down of some Pros and Cons and a little background of what it is.


1) Consolidation of Services. VoIP uses your internal IP network (network connection) to pass and receive voice traffic instead of your copper PSTN (public switched telephone network) lines like so many people are used to. So instead of having a separate line that comes in specifically for your phones and internet, they both will share the same line to accomplish the tasks, allowing consolidation of services. This gets me into the pros of going with a VOIP solution.

2) Easier (and cheaper) bill-paying. Going with a VoIP solution not only lets you consolidate in the manner of less equipment and less wires, it also allows you to pay one company for both your voice and data services. This will leave less of a paper trail, carbon footprint, and one less check to write for the accounting team. While on the topic of cost effectiveness, making a phone call with a VoIP solution is cheaper — so cheap that it is the same cost to make a call as it is to send an email!

3) Voice mail. Sure, you have voice mail with your old phone system. And it is just as easy, if not easier, to set up and manage with VoIP as it is with your old phone line. But VoIP takes it a step further, allowing you to also setup voice mail to create emails. That way you can read your voice mails (and have the printed notes right in front of you), rather than trying to listen to them in a noisy place, or having to find a pen to jot down a recited phone number.

4) The ability to set up and use call forwarding. Another handy feature you’re already familiar with, call forwarding is standard with VoIP, whereas it was an extra charge with the older phone systems/providers. 

5) Calls are easily recorded and monitored. This is great for those conference calls that not everyone can make, but they still need the info. It’s also a good way to check up on your employees and give them additional training, if needed, or have proof to back them up in the case of customer disputes.

mobile VoIP phone6) Mobility. You can move your phone anywhere, including doing a complete reconfiguration of where everyone sits in your office, or you could even take your office phone home, or to Canada, and you would still have the ability to keep the same phone number and functionality with your base VoIP phone unit.

7) Connectivity. Many companies use their VoIP solution to hold and accommodate voice/video conferencing which is a more cost effective way to bring people from all over the world together.  Sounding pretty good, eh?


Just like everything else in this world, not all that glitters is gold. With positives, there will always be negatives, hence “pros and cons.” Even though the list of cons is much shorter, I still feel it is my duty to make you aware of them so you can make an educated decision when talking about phone systems.

8) Hackers and viruses. Like anything that uses the internet for functionality, there is always a threat of being hacked and/or malicious attacks such as viruses. Yes, even phone systems can obtain viruses and can be hacked, with the hackers intercepting phone calls and tracking outbound/inbound calls. It is unfortunate that we have to worry about even our phones being hacked, and there are protective measures you can take to prevent this from happening. But that’s another-day conversation.

9) Reliability of usage. Another thing to take into consideration is the reliability. There are 2 parts to this so stick with me here. The first part is the reliability of usage. Since VoIP uses the same line as your internet, if the power goes out, a piece of networking equipment fails, or the ISP has an outage, you will not be able to use your phones just as you cannot surf the web at this time.

10) Reliability of quality. Secondly, if you do not take the time or spend the extra bit of money to ensure that your network is up-to-date and in a good spot, the quality of service on the phones can diminish. If your internet runs slow on a normal basis, your phone quality will be poorer than that of a healthy and fast network. There can be “choppiness,” delays, drops, and even static.  Something to take into consideration if you have been prolonging the network overhaul that is needed.

With all these thoughts, I hope that you feel at least comfortable enough to start a conversation with a VoIP provider in order to get more information about them. Here at Everon we are not a VoIP provider, per se, but we can answer questions and can help facilitate a transition to the service. Feel free to reach out to us by phone, website, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Cheers!


How to Manage Telecom Costs


by Anders Mikkelsen |

Aggressively managing vendor costs is not a high priority for most companies; as their primary focus tends to be on serving customers and building their business. If the vendor costs are reasonable and stable and the service adds value, most companies view vendors as “no brainers.” However, some simple things can be done to greatly reduce telecom costs and show a high return. Every dollar saved is an extra dollar in profits that can be re-invested in the business or returned to the owners.

Why Telecom Costs?

Every business has these costs; they’re substantial and can be dramatically reduced.

Every business needs to communicate with the outside world – this requires internet connections, long distance calls, toll free numbers, conferencing, T1s and PRIs, and good old fashioned phone lines. Telecom costs often run to $1,000 per employee per year. With aggressive management costs can fall to $500 per employee per year.

Opportunity Knocks Today

There are many reasons why telecom costs can fall. Historically the big telecom companies are expensive regulated monopolies with very reliable products but increasingly poor customer service. This explains the fair number of billing errors. The second big reason is that most companies don’t know the details of what they’re paying for; primarily because their bills are unclear and there are so many services. The last big reason why costs can fall is that there is a lot more competition in certain types of services and businesses can take advantage of de-regulation and competition to negotiate much better rates.

What Steps Do I Take?

To avoid unnecessary expenses, most companies make sure their provider’s latest bill is in line with the previous bill. To drastically bring costs down, one needs to conduct periodic reviews. This can be done internally by the person most knowledgeable about your company’s telecom needs or by an outside resource.

An in depth review can help you with questions like:

Am I:

Buying excess capacity?
Getting the best rates?
Unclear about inventory?
Wanting proof of savings?
Key Step List:
The number one task is to create an inventory of the services you’re paying for. Have a list of each service, including how much it costs and what it is for. Have whoever is in charge of telecom create this list.

Check for Billing Errors – Check the cost of each service against the quotes you got and contracts you signed.

Check for Unused Services – Periodically evaluate your services. Lines that are no longer in use are still billed to companies. Keeping on top of which of your current services you need, can end up saving you a lot of money.

Negotiate New Rates – With many commonly purchased services, rates have recently fallen quite dramatically. It is possible to ask one’s account managers for new deals, or use competitive quotes to get a new deal. Of course most businesses don’t have the time to stay current on the latest pricing and what can and can’t be negotiated, so outsourcing this can help.

Tracking – It is important to follow up with telecom vendors. They don’t always cancel services, fix billing errors, give credits, or implement the contracts you’ve negotiated. Keeping a file listing everything can help, and regular emails or phone calls following up are important

What Next?

Many executives and decision making parties simply don’t have the time to decipher vendor bills, create and review a thorough inventory, request changes, and ensure their vendor implement their requests. If you can relate to this feeling, it might be worth spending time to evaluate your organization’s needs. Outsourcing this process may potentially be a good idea for your company.

Anders Mikkelsen is the Managing Director for Berlin Pacific. Berlin Pacific is a telecom efficiency consulting company that helps small and medium sized businesses cut costs and improve business operations. Please visit their web site for further information.