File Server

Cross-platform file and print services with proven reliability and performance in mission-critical environments
  • Cross-platform Mac, Windows, and web clients
  • Advanced printing system
  • Highest reliability
  • Scalable for 5 to 500 users
  • Highest performance
  • Enterprise tools

Companies of every sort utilize file servers to provide central access to files and printers. But supporting a range of Mac, Windows, and web clients is not easy. That's why HELIOS cross-platform server solutions, backed by 20 years of development and experience, are the preferred way to bring true cross-platform client support to any server, with fully integrated support for Mac, Windows, and web clients.

File systems and network protocols for Windows, Mac, and web clients are complex, and difficult to integrate. Windows alternate data streams, Mac resource forks, file and record locking, Active Directory, LDAP, file system permissions, SMB/CIFS, AFP, HTTP, Windows, OS X, Sun Solaris, Linux, IBM AIX – a library of books has been written on these topics.

Well, HELIOS has written the book on how to integrate them – with HELIOS EtherShare, PCShare, and WebShare.

HELIOS EtherShare provides file and printer sharing for Mac clients, and PCShare does the same for Windows clients. Administrators use the cross-platform HELIOS Admin application to configure network volumes, printers, and security settings. Mac and Windows users can simply browse for these shared network volumes and print queues, the same as local resources. HELIOS WebShare adds remote file access and management for web users.

The real complexity of providing the cross-platform integration is handled transparently, with Mac native files, and Windows native files stored in a format compatible with the server file system. For example, hidden file resources for both Mac (resource forks) and Windows (NTFS streams) files are preserved, even during cross-platform file access. Unicode/UTF-8 file name encoding is used for cross-platform file transfers, so that file names are displayed properly on all clients. If a volume is shared by both EtherShare and PCShare, cross-platform file and record locking is used. The “HELIOS Meta” shell extension for Windows allows setting color labels from Windows clients. The HELIOS mDNS Server (“Bonjour”) enables automatic discovery of volumes and printers on IP networks. HELIOS command line utilities provide the same cross-platform compatibility for scripted processes. WebShare clients get the same file access and cross-platform support, in a highly secure manner, using any web browser.

The HELIOS advanced printing system provides a superior printing system to manage the printing needs of any size operation. Using HELIOS Admin, it is easy to set up spool directories, manage, reprint and archive jobs, and review logs. It is LPR/LPD compatible, and supports PostScript, PDF and other jobs. Its features are available to all network clients. HELIOS Create PDF Server allows high volume, load balanced, PDF generation using Ghostscript for enterprises, or Acrobat Distiller for prepress.

Flexible user authentication for HELIOS volumes and services is compatible with local, NIS, LDAP, Mac OS X, and Active Directory systems. Custom login notification scripts allow additional filtering capabilities to determine whether to deny or allow a login request. This could e.g., be based upon additional parameters such as the remote TCP/IP address, or, whether the user is already logged in from a different IP address. Access to HELIOS volumes and services can be further controlled via TCP/IP access lists.

HELIOS file server solutions are used extensively in mission-critical environments such as newspapers, where hundreds of users, high data volume, and unyielding deadlines leave no margin for failure. The HELIOS server fail safety system includes a service controller to start, stop, and monitor all HELIOS services. HELIOS master processes generate separate processes for each active user, to enforce file security and process safety. Failure of one client process does not impact any others. If any HELIOS service fails, the HELIOS Service Controller will restart the service.

This designed-in reliability and server fail safety also allows great scalability to support hundreds of users, and millions of files. HELIOS servers are relied upon in aerospace, government, retail, insurance, cosmetics, music, and other enterprises, as well as ad agencies, book, magazine, and newspaper publishers, and printers.

High performance and low overhead result from HELIOS processes refined for efficiency over many years. Users get the fastest network throughput, and indexed file searches for each volume yield extremely fast find file results.

 

Key features include:
  • Runs on all major server platforms
  • Cross-platform support for Mac, Windows, and web clients
    • Shared volumes between PCShare, EtherShare, and WebShare 
    • Shared printers between PCShare & EtherShare
    • Unicode/UTF-8 file representation
    • 64-bit large file support
    • Cross-platform file and record locking
    • Multiple network adapter support
    • Cross-platform admin from Mac, Windows & UNIX clients
  • Windows clients
    • Windows compatible file and print server (SMB/CIFS)
    • Client support: Windows 8, 7, Vista, XP, 2000, etc.
    • Windows file streams support
    • Windows Explorer extensions to edit UNIX permissions, file comments, and label colors
  • Mac clients
    • AFP 3.3 file server
    • Client support:  Mac OS 8.1-10.9
    • Mac OS 9/X TCP printer drivers
  • Web clients
    • WebShare remote file management via HTTP/HTTPS
    • Highest security
  • Authentication server supports LDAP, AD/PDC, NIS & local users
  • Advanced printing system
    • Supports PostScript, PDF and other jobs
    • lpr/lpd compatible
    • Server-based Create PDF
  • HELIOS mDNS Server (“Bonjour”)
    • Enables automatic discovery of computers, printers, and services on IP networks
  • Server indexed “find file” for Windows, Mac, web clients
  • DHCP Server
    • Primary and secondary DHCP backup server
  • Enterprise tools
    • Process auditing and tracing tools
    • UNIX “dt” CLI tools (mv, rm, cp, ls, find, …)
    • File event notification system and audit trail
    • Remote server admin from Mac, Windows and UNIX
  • Highest reliability
    • Server fail safety via the HELIOS Service Controller
  • Scalable for 5 to 500 users
  • Highest performance
Network administrators can take advantage of HELIOS tools designed for their needs:
  • Audit and trace HELIOS processes
    Live monitoring and tracing of the internal activity of any HELIOS service and/or individual session. This allows looking into a process to isolate/identify problems.
  • Volumes are compatible with online file system snapshots provided by the OS
  • This allows online backups and access to older filesystem snapshots which can be republished as volumes.
  • File event notification system and audit trail via telnet
    File and directory events from HELIOS processes and tools can be reported to processes listening via telnet. File name, path, user, and action are included. Notifications can be limited by file type and extension. This is a lightweight service with excellent performance and without polling.
  • Command line support
    Every HELIOS procedure that can be performed via the user interface, can also be accomplished via the command line. Any shell script or scripting language can be used.
  • HELIOS “dt” command line tools
    The HELIOS “dt” tools are UNIX equivalent commands that preserve cross-platform file properties. The “dt” tools include:  rm, rmdir, mv, cp, ls, mkdir, chmod, chown, and find.
  • Indexed fast find file support
    File name indexes for each HELIOS volume allow extremely fast find file searches from Mac, Windows, and WebShare clients. Command line support is provided by the “dt find” command.
  • Script Server process automation system
    HELIOS Admin allows the easy setup of hot folders to automate HELIOS and other server processes. Hot folder scripts are triggered when a specified action occurs, with very low system overhead and no latency.
  • HELIOS Admin cross-platform GUI for server administration
    Remote server administration from Windows, Mac, and UNIX via HELIOS Admin over TCP/IP and HTTP
  • Remote support
    HELIOS products are designed with full support for remote administration by a system administrator. A TCP/IP access list for HELIOS Admin can be set to allow specific remote users over the Internet. Any tasks not available via HELIOS Admin can be performed via an SSH terminal login

HELIOS servers have proven reliability and performance in mission-critical environments, and continue to set the standard for the most complete cross-platform client support