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Throttle Shared Users With OS X — Is It Possible?

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the throttle-the-snot-instead dept.

Networking 403

whisper_jeff writes "I work in a design studio where the production director is also the owner's son (translation = he can do no wrong). He is fond of accessing a designer's computer via filesharing and working directly on files off of the designer's computers rather than transferring the files to his computer to work on them there. In so doing, he causes the designer's computer to grind to a near-halt as the harddrive is now tasked with his open/save requests along with whatever the designer is doing. Given that there is no way he's going to change his ways (since he doesn't see anything wrong with it...), I was wondering if there was a way to throttle a user's shared access to a computer (Mac OSX 10.5.8) so that his remote working would have minimal impact on our work. Google searches have revealed nothing helpful (maybe I should Bing it... :) so I was hoping someone with more technical expertise on Slashdot could offer a suggestion."

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the correct solution (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362650)

Disable file shares on workstations. Use a file server.

Re:the correct solution (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362710)

Disable file shares on workstations. Use a file server.

This is what I came to say. Backups become simpler as well.

Re:the correct solution (2, Funny)

UID30 (176734) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363004)

What is this "b-ack-ups" you speak of? and a "fi-le ser-ver"? isn't it easier for everybody to just keep the most recent copy of their own work? if you need a file, you just have to wait for everyone to reply to your email saying when was the last time they edited the file and then you can look on their computer, copy the file, make your changes, and drop it right on the production server... amIright?

Re:the correct solution (1)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362762)

I have to echo that statement, use a file server, problem solved.

I assume the OP doesn't see anything wrong with having 20 slightly different versions of the same design?

Re:the correct solution (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362882)

I assume the OP doesn't see anything wrong with having 20 slightly different versions of the same design?

That could very well be the point. Especially in advertising where you might want to have say, 4 different versions of a logo and let the client choose which one they want.

Re:the correct solution (2, Insightful)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363092)

Yes, but you keep it organized at a single location, not fractured over 10 different computers.

Re:the correct solution (1)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362996)

I should add to my previous post, the other solution is to put an SSD on the designers computer.

Re:the correct solution (5, Insightful)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362774)

Disable file shares on workstations. Use a file server.

Well, that's the correct technical solution, but the real, supreme, correct decision is: Find a new job, and fast. Nothing good has ever come from challenging a coworker who enjoys immunity, especially when it's familial.

Re:the correct solution (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363282)

Having been in similar situations, I more or less agree.

There's no way around it: If the owner is really letting his son do whatever he wants, then any successful technical solution is likely to cause you real-world trouble. You may allow your designers to work better, but if the son goes complaining behind your back to the owner, you'll find yourself suffering more.

The real questions for this situation are (a) Is there any chance the owner is intelligent and reasonable enough for you to discuss the situation? and (b) If not, is your job otherwise good enough to tolerate a boss who's unprofessional enough to allow this sort of thing?

Re:the correct solution (1)

lorenlal (164133) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362846)

AC is dead on. You'll look good for making everything "easier to manage" and you'll get this tool off your back. Of course, if that's not an option (let's face it, if it's a small shop spending money isn't a high priority), then use toolbox's system as the central repository until you can get it justified.

Based on your summary here - You're not terribly fond of the boss and the director either. Are you looking at moving elsewhere in or out of the company?

Re:the correct solution (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31363084)

Based on your summary here - You're not terribly fond of the boss and the director either. Are you looking at moving elsewhere in or out of the company?

I read it as your typical entitled adminstrative bitch, whining because running IT isn't an end unto itself. Face it, sys admin types like to think that they are the reason the business exists, when nothing could be further from the truth.

Now go run more scripts, server monkey.

Re:the correct solution (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363008)

Even better would be some kind of document management system.
You create a folder for each job and everybody checks the file in and out to work on it. You can even keep older versions and revert if somebody blows it.
You would also have a single machine to backup all your critical data.

That would seem to be the ideal solution.

Re:the correct solution (5, Interesting)

Thyamine (531612) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363090)

This definitely would be a good solution.

But I like the 'Windows' method of solving the problem: reboot. When the co-worker has this sudden slow down on his system, reboot to clear up the 'resource problem'. Certainly a more vindictive way to solve the issue, but effective.

Re:the correct solution (1)

WCMI92 (592436) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363154)

Disable file shares on workstations. Use a file server.

This. We use Windows servers, but for designers and other people who store important files on their local machine rather than the server, after several hard drive crashes that proved they were disobeying the directive to not do this, we now employ folder redirection. How this works is that in our domain policy, certain folders (such as My Documents) and files (Outlook PST's) are actually stored on the file server, even though it appears to be "local" to the user. We also use the offline files feature and file synchronization in the case of notebook users so that they may have access to the files when not on our LAN.

I'm sure there is some equivalent way to do this on a Mac.

Re:the correct solution (5, Funny)

SQLGuru (980662) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363164)

Create a link from your machine to his. Save the file local to his machine instead of yours (via the link). Share out your link to him. He'll actually be taking the long way around back to his own box.

A suggestion... (2, Insightful)

Earl The Squirrel (463078) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362656)

Put a 10 MBit switch between his computer and the network... that'll do it... 8-)

Re:A suggestion... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362726)

Or enable QOS to slowdown SMB packets (or whatever protocol MacOSX uses)

Re:A suggestion... (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362728)

Any throttling is going to be noticed by this idiot, and if his old man is shit stupid to let him do this kind of thing anyways, you can be sure you'll be getting an unfriendly knock on the door about the slow network.

Disable file sharing on the workstations, go to a file server, tell the other guys to copy their own files over to do their work and let fuck brain fuck with the stuff on the file server. If you need a rationale, just say "We need to centralize our file store for better security and backups."

Re:A suggestion... (1)

sleekware (1109351) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362750)

Or use a hub, even slower...

Re:A suggestion... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362840)

Hubs are only slower if there's more than two machines connected to it.

Re:A suggestion... (1)

Saishuuheiki (1657565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362754)

Alternative is if you could cap his upload on the network. If he's only saving the stuff at 50kb/s the computer should be able to manage to do other stuff with limited slowdown

Re:A suggestion... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31363018)

Intermittently disconnect him, and tell him that his connection is working fine. If he insists that he had been disconnected, offer him your preferred solution, as it would not result in any more disconnections.

What do you mean no answer on goolge? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362666)

I found this link on google hope it helps.

Turn off the shares on the Workstations (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362670)

Place the source files on a server, use some kind of resource control system to allow users to check-out / check-in the files, and voila... done...

Two Options (5, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362676)

Well, I don't think you want to mess with how the operating system handles its network and file system so you have two options. You can either throttle at the router or throttle at the neck. The router option requires you have a capable enough network router connecting you two in order to be able to write a rule for his machine (by IP address or machine name usually) that limits the amount of information he can transfer (I believe this is possible in DD-WRT [dd-wrt.com] and is called throttling or traffic shaping). This will cause his experience to become slow and he will most likely complain and bitch to daddy if he knows you did something.

The other option is throttling the neck of the user. This requires somewhat strong hands and forearms applying a pressure to the neck of the user until he stops moving or goes limp. It may result a decreased experience for the user, difficulty breathing, death and in some cases an erection. Use with caution and have an alibi.

Re:Two Options (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362876)

It is incredibly more likely they are on the same network without a router between them. You can still shape traffic on switches, but you'll have to have (or buy) a switching platform that supports it.

Re:Two Options (1)

SlamMan (221834) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363066)

You're not going to be able to throttle at the router in an environment like this. For an office this size, its doubtful that the computers are on different subnets. Same subnet = not going through the router, and just staying local on the switch.

Advice (1)

QuoteMstr (55051) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363176)

There's an old saying:

Never try to apply a technological solution to a social problem.

I'm also reminded of the serenity prayer (which doesn't demand a theological interpretation, even):

God, grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
The courage to change the things that I can;
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Re:Two Options (2, Funny)

forand (530402) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363224)

This sounds like an explanation given by someone on Black Adder.

W: Very well then. Three other paths are open to you. Three cunning plans to cure thy ailment.
E: Oh good.
W: The first is simple. Kill Bob!
E: Never.
W: Then try the second. Kill your self!
E: Neu. And the third?
W: The third is to ensure that no one else ever knows.
E: Ha, that sounds more like it. How?
W: Kill everybody in the whole world. Ah, ha, ha ...

check dis out: (5, Informative)

riff420 (810435) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362684)

chmod the files so that only the appropriate user has read/write, and that the boss' son has read access. only allow him to replace the files in a different directory, so that you can evaluate the changes.

file server? (2, Informative)

InsertWittyNameHere (1438813) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362688)

Who cares about throttling. Why isn't your data on a file server? Especially if there's intentions to share it.

Re:file server? (3, Insightful)

anlprb (130123) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362862)

You missed the part where he said "design studio" and "OS X." Also, since he is posting to /. for the answer, the idea of knowing what he _should_ be doing in an IT role is a stretch. I don't know why any office with more than 1 computer wouldn't have a file server, but hey, don't even ask him when his last off-site backup was, he may cry.

Re:file server? (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363050)

Judging from the post, it seems like there really isn't any intention to share it at the time.

The impression I got is they have, say, 5 designers making, say, a logo. Designers 1-4 are the workers and designer 5 is the son. 1-4 work on different logos to present to the company, designer 5 was supposed to but instead sees what designers 1-4 are doing, takes elements from there and creates another design (claiming it was his own of course). At least thats the impression I got.

Re:file server? (2)

DIplomatic (1759914) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363196)

It's always amazing how when someone doesn't know the answer to a question, they just claim the asker is completely wrong. e.g. Question: "How can I do 'X' in Windows?" Answer: "Switch to Linux." Thanks for helping so much.

The answer to your question: (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362692)

Yes. It is possible.

Please keep in mind that when doing something like this with OS X it is best to keep in mind what the underlying system is. Try expanding your search for a solution to include BSD options (hell, even Linux).

You are at the beginning of a great journey of knowledge!

If you don't care about the knowledge, hire someone. I'm available, but I'm not cheap.

Re:The answer to your question: (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362916)

If you don't care about the knowledge, hire someone. I'm available, but I'm not cheap.

So he'll go to his boss and say "An Anonymous Coward can help us, but he isn't cheap. Let's hire him." I wonder what his boss will answer :-)

I'm glad I'm not the only one (5, Funny)

dave562 (969951) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362696)

I want to throttle just about every OSX user I've ever met.

Re:I'm glad I'm not the only one (1)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362738)

Oh, how I wish I hadn't posted already. +1 good sir.

Re:I'm glad I'm not the only one (5, Informative)

dave562 (969951) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362824)

I'm glad that someone got a chuckle out of it before it was modded into oblivion. Those OSX users sure are a sensitive bunch.

Simple Fix (2, Interesting)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362700)

It's really easy, I swear:

Write a script that will hammer the everlasting fuck out of his shared drive when he's trying to do something. As (I assume) the IT department, he will complain to you. When he does, politely say, "Yeah, I think that can happen when users constantly access files on a remote shared drive. Someone must be doing that to your box. It really sucks, huh?"

When someone acts like a child, you must treat them like a child. Some people just have to find out what "Think about how that would make you feel" really means the hard way.

Another job (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362712)

Have you thought about looking for a job with less familial douche baggery?

Explain (2, Insightful)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362720)

Is it not possible to explain to this person the negative impact that his actions have? You explained it to us with one sentence:

In so doing, he causes the designer's computer to grind to a near-halt as the harddrive is now tasked with his open/save requests along with whatever the designer is doing.

Right after that line you say he doesn't see anything wrong with it. Have you not explained this to him?

And why are you sharing every workstation instead of using a single file server?

Don't be naive. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362752)

The person asking the question obviously made up the premise.

Re:Explain (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362838)

My thoughts too. This isn't 1985 any more. If you have a network, grab a spare box, throw a file server on it and away you go. How does this organization do backups? It's such a pain in the ass to set your backup system to go grabbing data off of every workstation, and inevitably someone will either walk away from the evening with half a dozen files opened and locked, or will turn the machine off.

I haven't run a network in 15 years where workstations kept data local, with the exception of notebooks, and there you're usually doing some sort of synchronization to update local files to the file server. How can someone have such an array of modern equipment and yet run them like some arcnet from the mid-1980s? It's a bad system, of course it's going to cause serious problems for workstations, treating workstations like servers always had and always will.

Re:Explain (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363068)

Why use a spare box?
There are are ton of inexpensive NAS solutions you can get at Best Buy.
Or pick up a Drobo.

Re:Explain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31363188)

Because spare boxes don't cost anything. They've already been paid for.

Re:Explain (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363198)

Why use a spare box?

Designers are notorious for being retarded. Using another Mac as the fileserver is most likely the best solution as anything else, short of netatalk on Linux, is going to loose the resource fork. With out that, the OS doesn't know what to do with the file because the idiot user is too stupid to name the file with file extensions.

I really wish Apple would move away from a forked filesystem.

Re:Explain (2, Insightful)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363270)

Designers are notorious for being retarded.

I wouldn't call them retarded, just focused elsewhere. Hell, the same could be said about pretty much any non-IT worker or home user using any operating system.

Unless it's their job to know better, most people won't.

Re:Explain (4, Informative)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363174)

Well, when it comes to people working with graphics they often use local storage as their primary "work storage" because it's faster (and when you're working with lots of large files this becomes critical if you want to retain your sanity) and then they just use the server for saving backups at the end of the day and for final production work. So a lot of times the actual work copy is always stored on the local workstation, this is especially true when dealing with video/animation as you can easily end up with insane amounts of data, if you're working on uncompressed 1080p video rendered as independent targa images (so you can easily re-render specific short runs of frames, very common when working with software like Maya and 3dsmax) you may be looking at roughly 7 GiB of data for 30 seconds of video (8 bit color with alpha and 30 fps), not the kind of thing you want to be pushing back and forth across the network all the time (even if you're just copying the data that's changed it ends up being pretty heavy).

tl;dr: People who work with CGI have datasets and a workflow that don't work well with using servers for data storage other than as an easy way to backup data.


Suggestive title (1, Redundant)

Saishuuheiki (1657565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362724)

While it is indeed possible to throttle OS X users with a strong grip or a length of rope, it's quite illegal at least in the US

I don't see how it's possible with OSX. (0, Redundant)

feepness (543479) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362734)

Rather I would recommend your bare hands or a short length of rope.

Location, Location, Location (3, Informative)

pete-classic (75983) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362744)

Store all the files on the offendor's computer. Let the other designers work off of his computer. Done!

But seriously, why should anyone be able to access anyone else's files? Secure everyone's computer. You should put shared files on a shared file server [apple.com].

And why not use revision control?


Re:Location, Location, Location (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363266)

And why not use revision control?

Revision control on 1920x1080(resolution)x4(colors)x30(fps) bytes per second of video? If you do have a good binary revision control, please let me know.

Alternate solutions (1)

JimTheta (115513) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362748)

These aren't suggestions for your question, but rather for your situation. (I'm betting you're going to get a lot of these; so I apologize.) 1) When the designer notices the HD slowdown, why doesn't he just go offline for a while? After doing that 5 or 15 times maybe that clown will get the idea. 2) Can the designers make the shared files read-only?

Use Subversion on the machine itsself. (1)

sir lox elroy (735636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362772)

Use version control on the machine itself, forcing the users to check in and out files might help, and alleviate the headache of two users working on the same file. Subversion is available as a binary for install right into OSX and XCode supports Subversion.

Re:Use Subversion on the machine itsself. (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363324)

Until the owner's son edits files directly on the svn server, screwing up the repository.

File Permissions (2, Informative)

DownWithTheMan (797237) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362780)

Why not just set the file permissions to not allow write access - then said director will be forced to work on and save files locally..

ipfw (5, Informative)

thittesd0375 (1111917) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362792)

You can configure a firewall rate limiting statement based on source ip address using ipfw. Then just have an applescript that toggles this than can be run as soon as you notice the computer getting slow.

Re:ipfw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31363062)

+1 make a launch script for launchd and have it trigger QOS in ipfw at bootup. You may have to use sysctl to enable ipfw in addition to the builtin "ApplicationFailwall".

Re:ipfw (2, Informative)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363300)

You can configure a firewall rate limiting statement based on source ip address using ipfw. Then just have an applescript that toggles this than can be run as soon as you notice the computer getting slow.

For bonus points, use fail2ban or similar to detect the slowness from some log or script, and have it apply the ipfw statement for 10 minute intervals.

Rsync, Freenas, or dropbox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362796)

Probably not the answer you're looking for, but you can build a pretty cheap NAS Box using an atom chipset and preferably 2 mirrored hard drives and have him remotely connect to that.

It's a relatively cheap solution $200-$400, however, probably not what you had in mind.

Another possibility is using a utility that syncs the files. So they'll be accessed locally regardless. I recommend rsync or if you're inclined for a quick fix dropbox works well.

IPFW should work (5, Informative)

AngusH (611073) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362800)

Try using the advice in this tip: http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20080119112509736 [macosxhints.com] which demonstrates bandwidth throttling by port number
but add a rule that limits by ip address as well as port number
see http://developer.apple.com/mac/library/documentation/Darwin/Reference/ManPages/man8/ipfw.8.html [apple.com] for details of the ipfw rules
I haven't tried this combination myself but I can't see why it wouldn't work.

Re:IPFW should work (3, Informative)

AngusH (611073) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362866)

Posted too soon :-(
It appears IPFW may not be able to filter AFP (file sharing) after all. Worth a try possibly, but may not work.

Sounds like info is missing, but here goes (2, Interesting)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362806)

His mac grinds to a halt due to samba? Lower the process priority of samba on the mac serving the files.

But the better question is, if these are shared files that he's working on, why aren't they on a central server thats made to serve files. Why are they on individual machines anyway? If your network is fast enough that it can make the server mac get loaded down with disk IO than its certainly fast enough to serve the files from a central share for both users anyway.

The solution is to throttle the 'workstations' file server by turning it off and moving the files to a proper server.

The hack'd solution is to realize that you're talking about a mac serving files ... which means samba ... which has all the power you need to limit the user in question to a sane rate.

man smb.conf and be prepared for lots of reading.

Re:Sounds like info is missing, but here goes (2, Insightful)

jo_ham (604554) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363036)

Why is it necessarily samba? If it's an all-Mac office, it could be AFP.

Re:Sounds like info is missing, but here goes (4, Insightful)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363074)

Unfortunately, when you're dealing with disk I/O, you can have processes that use little CPU but severely degrade disk performance by beating on the disk.

Even if it's at low priority, any seeks at all to a part of the drive that normally wouldn't be accessed will hurt performance.

It's not a case of "90% of the disk throughput for app A and 10% for B" - the moment you introduce B, the total performance drops significantly due to seeking coming into play.

Re:Sounds like info is missing, but here goes (1)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363304)

Process priorities also effect IO prioritization on OS X.

Doesn't matter if its not starving the CPU, if other higher priority tasks want IO they get it first.

Re:Sounds like info is missing, but here goes (1)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363186)

Self replies are bad, yada yada ...

The more I read the original post the more I think that slashdot has turned into a generic 'ask about your computer problems' forum than news for nerds.

This question appears to be from someone with no administration experience at all, nor does it appear that even the slightest effort has been put into finding a solution to the problem. Just for reference, telling us that you googled without actually doing it doesn't count as making an effort.

Its unacceptable that you don't know that Samba is your file server software and you're asking about how to configure it on slashdot. Yes, I know, I should be helpful and give you a bit of knowledge blah blah blah. You should also have not been so lazy as to not bother to even find out what software you are running before asking about how to configure it.

Whats more unacceptable is that douche bag let put this on the front page. I'm sure there are plenty of cluebies that send things to slashdot, but even timothy should know at this point that OS X uses samba, its not like it hasn't been discussed here multiple times before.

But finally, just so I'm not 'that guy' who's a totally useless asshole.

http://us4.samba.org/samba/docs/man/Samba-HOWTO-Collection/speed.html [samba.org]

That guide is for making samba faster, figure it out.

Disconnect him (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362810)

Periodically disconnect him (just turn sharing off and right back on) Claim ignorance when he asks what keeps happening. Eventually one of his files will be corrupted (probably a Quark XPress doc) and he will learn his lesson.

Wait, What? (2, Insightful)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362822)

Somehow, I find it surprising that you're managing to saturate a modern hard drive via a single network connection. Are you running extremely slow PCs on a ridiculously fast network? The workflow that you describe sounds pretty normal for a design studio.

Re:Wait, What? (1)

JazzXP (770338) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363110)

Happens to every Windows box at my office too when copying large files (or lots of little ones).

Re:Wait, What? (3, Insightful)

Big Boss (7354) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363172)

Most current Macs, even a few versions back, are quite quick machines dragging an anchor around in the form of a 5400RPM laptop hard drive. With multi-user access, seek times add up fast. Upgrading my Mac Mini to a mid-level SSD made it feel 10x faster. Now it's the stupid SATA1 interface slowing things down. Not much I can do about that.

Upgrading the machine to a "modern hard drive" would help a lot. Even in laptop form factor, 7200RPM is easy to come by. SSD is ideal, but design places tend to use big files, so an SSD might be too small.

Or, as suggested by every other reply, put up a real file server. A few mirrors stripped into a single big drive should give excellent performance.

Samba, or replace eithernet cable with phone cable (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362850)

Install Samba from something like Darwinports or Fink, and then assign the samba process a max of 0.001% cpu time.
The other option is to share the images folder off a secondary eithernet card (how??), and connect the secondary eithernet card to the router using 100' of phone cable crimped into RJ-45 connectors for maximum latency.
If you want to increase his latency even more, connect that phone cable-come-eithernet cable to a dumb 10mb (not 10/100, but ten mbps) hub, add two other computers constantly pushing a dummy load of traffic across it, and then run a crossover cable to the router with another computer transfering data over the crossover cable to maximize the number of hub collisions.
We used to get together in high school and connect two dumb hubs together with a crossover cable and have about 15 people attempt to play games together using the setup described above. It hardly ever worked, which is why I'm suggesting it to you. Sucking a 30mb .psd file over high latency 10mbps phoneline-come-eithernet will teach anyone a lesson :)

ipfw with prob (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31362870)

use ipfw with "prob" (This can be useful for a number of applications such as random packet drop...).

Lots of articles on customizing the firewall, you can issue ipfw rules by hand so they disappear at reboot or build a startup script that configures the firewall the way you want on boot.

Use IPFW, its built in (5, Informative)

gbrandt (113294) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362936)

OS X uses ipfw as its firewall. Look up 'ipfw throttling' in google. If you don't want to edit ipfw files by hand, hunt out WaterRoof as well.

Why do designers have the files on their machines? (1)

barfy (256323) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362938)

Version control software. Figure out how to use it and install it. When the files stop being on the designers machines, the owners son will get them where he is supposed to, the version control server.

The BOFH's answer (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362952)

The Jewish form of the Golden Rule reads, "Don't do unto others what you wouldn't like them to do unto you." When he starts messing with somebody else's hard disk, open up a file on his box, make a trivial change and save it. Undo the change and save again. Lather, rinse, repeat until he complains about how his box is grinding to a halt. Explain to him that this is exactly what he's doing to others, and that he might want to reconsider his attitude.

Warning: don't do this unless you're willing to go job-hunting.

osx advanced networking is cumbersome/incomplete (1)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362962)

After trying to convert my linux v4 nat firewall with bucket traffic shaping, I wanted to see how readily I could convert it to os x. I realized, after about 50% success, that if it's not part of the GUI, apple is basically not endorsing it. This was on their server version, mind you. I haven't tried anything with the client, which was less feature complete but more stable.

Anyways, there's plenty of other ways of solving it. And I tried it 9 or 10 months ago, so if someone can prove me wrong then they should deserve some appreciation around here.

Throttle the port. (5, Informative)

googlesmith123 (1546733) | more than 4 years ago | (#31362964)

You have to throttle the port the file sharing is running on. Probably 548 or/and 427. To throttle these ports you have to go into terminal and type this:

sudo ipfw pipe 1 config bw 15KByte/s
sudo ipfw add 1 pipe 1 src-port 548

To remove the throttling just type:
sudo ipfw delete 1

Source: http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20080119112509736 [macosxhints.com]

Re:Throttle the port. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31363216)

15KByte/s ??? That's pretty fast.

If you -really- want to be effective, try: 36Kbit

That will make it nice and painful, 1994 bandwidth!

ipfw? (0, Redundant)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363000)

You could try ipfw's rate limiting features. With ipfw [freebsd-howto.com] you can create "pipes" of specified capacity and attach them to ports, limiting speed for activity on that port.

I don't know, though, if that will still work with Apple's application-level firewall in the mix. I'm not up on the details; but my impression is that that one has a habit of being extremely deferential to Apple-signed binaries.

Be assertive (5, Insightful)

QuoteMstr (55051) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363026)

This twit isn't your problem. Throttling him on your own initiative is both passive-aggressive and might overstep what the owner expects, which could land you in hot water. Don't do that. Here's what you do instead. Go to the owner's office and say the following:

I've been receiving complaints from some of the design staff about their computers slowing down and interfering with their work. The cause of the problem is the Production Director accessing files on designers' computers instead of copying them to his own. The hard drives on designer computers are not designed to accommodate two users accessing the files at once.

These slowdowns will persist unless we take action to correct the problem. If these remote accesses continue, we will need to increase the capacity of each designer's workstation at a cost of $A per machine for a total of $B. Another option would be to limit these remote accesses by implementing an automatic throttling system. That will take C hours of my time [optionally: at cost $D]." The last, which I recommend, is to create a new workflow for the Production Manager that ensures that designer computers are not overloaded.

What is your decision?

Re:Be assertive (4, Interesting)

ccandreva (409807) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363220)

I actually did a variation on this years ago (1988 or so) in a company running Novell. One of the servers was also acting as a router (it had two network cards and connected two 10base-2 segments). Every time someone did a database update, I got kicked off the network for an hour.

No one listened to me that this was a problem, so I just brought a book to the office, and when this happened, put my feet up on the desk and read.

It was only a few days of this before the owner of the company 'caught' me and goes nuts. I explained calmly the situation, that I couldn't work when an update was going on, and had been told there was no money to upgrade the server.

A new server was ordered that afternoon.

Re:Be assertive (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31363280)

shoot up the place!

wrong*2==right (5, Insightful)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363152)

plant some weed in his desk and call the cops anon.

Re:wrong*2==right (1)

WCMI92 (592436) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363292)

by gandhi_2 (1108023) writes: Alter Relationship on Thursday March 04, @04:40PM (#31363152) Homepage

plant some weed in his desk and call the cops anon.

ROFL. That would certainly be one way to do it, BOFH style.

Still though, if some punk is allowed to get away with slowing productivity because they aren't willing to listen to reason because of who they are related to, sounds to me like this is a company you want to get the hell away from as soon as possible.

Hint: If nepotism is this bad, it will only get worse, when "mr know it all" (and not you) are eventually made the boss when the owner retires and immediately runs the place into the ground.

be nice (2, Informative)

MrKaos (858439) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363210)

Can't you just change the nice value of the process running the file server software and alter it's CPU priority, should work on MAC.

Check the nice manual page [manpagez.com]

Increment it slowly and he won't know whats going on (mu-ha ha)

Throttle the User (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#31363218)

In pebkac or id10t situations, throttling the user is often the best option. He's just going to complain to daddy that you're preventing him from doing work if you retard his remote file access.
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