New Features in HELIOS Base UB2

  • HELIOS UB2 supports Mac OS X 10.6 as a server platform. Note that Mac OS X 10.6 does not support AppleTalk; only 10.4 and 10.5 include AppleTalk
  • AppleTalk is optional for all platforms that support AppleTalk
  • The syslog entries listing tool “psyslog” now supports the new rsyslog daemon and configuration that are used by default on newer Linux distributions, e.g. openSUSE 11.2 or newer
  • New PDC authentication in UB2:
    In the past, we needed a special AD/PDC share containing the groups created by the “helauthcreate.exe” program, this is not needed anymore. The new “HELIOS PDC Logon” Windows installer installs a new HELIOS service on an AD/PDC server which gets queried from one or more HELIOS authentication servers to answer login and group member requests. For details, please read New PDC authentication in UB2 below.
  • Spotlight search support:
    UB2 features the HELIOS index server, which is very compatible with Apple’s search technology implementation. Therefore it works right from within the Mac Finder. Spotlight searches are also supported via PCShare, WebShare, and the command line. The HELIOS Spotlight server, client and indexer comprise a very sophisticated system which collects and indexes metadata and full-text of files in HELIOS volumes.



    Files and folders

    All file and folder names including dates


    Mac, Windows, and WebShare file and folder comments


    All major image formats (color space, resolution, pixels, …)


    IPTC metadata fields


    Image information from EXIF records


    XMP metadata fields aswell as custom XMP fields


    ICC profile names that are included within images


    Regular text files (ASCII, Unicode, etc.)


    Word files (old and new formats)


    Excel files (old and new formats)


    PowerPoint files (old and new formats)


    PDF metadata and form fields


    PDF full-text extraction via PDF HandShake add-on


    Full-text extraction via ImageServer add-on (XPV files)


    Author, project title, file status and due date information


    aax, m4a, m4p, mp3, wma, mov, wmv file metadata

    The benefit is that this Spotlight support brings real value to users. Simple searches for file names, comments, image data, IPTC, XMP, EXIF, InDesign/QuarkXPress text and more offer great convenience and time savings. Unique to HELIOS is the Spotlight support for XMP metadata. Just manage your IPTC/XMP/EXIF data within the original files and it is searchable. This is very powerful because customers can define their own XMP panels in Photoshop and the additional metadata fields are now Spotlight indexed. Details are documented in the Index Server manual. Even more complex queries can be created to e.g. »Return all images with an sRGB profile attached« or »Return all PDF files with the comment “Review” of today«. This brings entirely new capabilities to our server customers.

    Spotlight includes a new server service, indexing rebuild tools, and support for Mac, Windows, web and “dt” tool CLI clients. We support both specific field and full-text searches. HELIOS is the first vendor offering Spotlight support for Mac, Windows, web and CLI users.

    HELIOS Admin has received support to rebuild the Spotlight index for a volume.

Take a Spotlight video tour

  • Bonjour server compatibility enhancements
  • HELIOS Admin additional compatibility enhancements
  • HELIOS Admin volume settings received users list in addition to the existing groups list. If users or groups have been specified in the lists, the volume will only be available to members of these lists. The new volume users list is supported by EtherShare and PCShare.
  • “dt” tools support file comments and the Spotlight search
  • “dt” tools received support to set and view the “Label” color numbers (0-7)
  • “dt” tools file management on HELIOS volumes will inform EtherShare and PCShare server to notify the Mac Finder and Windows Explorer on changed files
  • Authentication server LDAP support has been enhanced to work more robust with unavailable LDAP servers
  • Services that are not needed by a product will not be installed, e.g. HELIOS Admin server on WebShare only configurations

New PDC authentication in UB2

UB2 offers a new PDC (Primary Domain Controller) authentication that has several advantages over the previous version:

  • Consistent UNIX user and group ids if several HELIOS installations authenticate against the same PDC (see Mapping of Windows SIDs to UNIX user and group IDs)
  • Faster and more reliable authentication especially in PDC domains with many groups
  • Backup Domain Controller support
  • Primary group support for AD/PDC users


HELIOS PDC Logon is installed as a Windows service which can be stopped or started with the net stop/start heliospdclogon command.

Group inclusion and exclusion

In Windows, domain users can be members of many groups. In contrast, some UNIX variants only allow a very limited number of groups per user. To overcome this hurdle, HELIOS PDC Logon can report to the “authsrv” only a subset of the groups PDC users are members of.

At startup, HELIOS PDC Logon tries to read in two files “group-include.txt” and “group-exclude.txt”. These files reside where HELIOS PDC Logon is installed.

As its name suggest, “group-include.txt” specifies allowed group names, i.e. any PDC group not mentioned there is ignored. Likewise “group-exclude.txt” specifies group names that are ignored, i.e. all PDC group not mentioned there are allowed. The exclude list takes precedence over the include list i.e. a group name that is in both files is filtered out nonetheless.

Group filter file format

The group files must be UTF-8 encoded. The files have to start with the magic line: # heliospdclogon filter file. The groups must be listed line-separated.


HELIOS PDC Logon needs to be restarted if the group filter files were changed.

Mapping of Windows SIDs to UNIX user and group IDs

Windows uses SIDs (Security Identifiers) to identify users and groups. HELIOS PDC Logon uses a consistent mapping from SIDs to UNIX user and group IDs:

  • The “Administrators” group is mapped to group ID 0.
  • The “Print Operators” group is mapped to group ID 1.
  • All other user and group SIDs are mapped to a UNIX ID in the range
    16777216-83886079 (hex: 0x01000000-04FFFFFF), using a built-in algorithm.

The old UB+ preferences PDCUserFirstId, PDCUserLastId, PDCGroupFirstId and PDCGroupLastId (HELIOS Admin options First User ID, Last User ID, First Group ID and Last Group ID) are no longer used.

HELIOS Base UB2 for Windows

The Microsoft C runtime “vcredist_x86.exe” installer is not needed anymore. The new HELIOS UB2 based products include the required C runtime DLL in the HELIOS library folder.