- 1Mounting Network Shares with ConnectMeNow
- 2Getting started with Mounting Network Shares and ConnectMeNow
- 3Supported Protocols
- 4ConnectMeNow Daily use - The Menu bar
- 5Adding Shares
- 6Adding Menu Groups
- 7Application Preferences
- Common Application setting
- Less Common Application setting
- Change Log
- Bug Reporting and Feature Requests
- Update 4.0.11 (Oct 21, 2023)
- Update 4.0.10 (July 7, 2023)
- Update v4.0.9 (May 28, 2023)
- Update v4.0.8 (March 15, 2023)
- Update v4.0.7 (March 13, 2023)
- Update v4.0.6 (Feb. 2, 2023)
- Update v4.0.5 (Jan. 30, 2023)
- Update v4.0.4 (Jan. 11, 2023)
- Update 4.0.3 (Dec. 20, 2022)
- Update 4.0.2 (Dec. 13, 2022)
Mounting Network Shares with ConnectMeNow
So, let’s start by explaining what “mounting network shares” means.
The simplest explanation would be:
Mounting Network Shares
The action of attaching a directory located on a different computer, shared over a network, to your computer as if it was a local disk drive.
(under Windows this is often a drive letter)
Note: this is most certainly not the most complete, technical or most correct description, but for most regular users this will suffice.
The “different computer” can be another computer, a NAS (Network Attached Storage – like from QNAP, Synology, Western Digital, Seagate, etc.), a shared USB stick connected to your router, or even a full size server. The Operating System of these “computers” does not need to be relevant, as long as it supports one of the needed protocols.
For example most NAS devices, like a QNAP NAS, run a Linux variant, however can share directories in a Windows originated protocol (SMB), and be accessed by a macOS computer.
Out of the box, under macOS, you’ll need to go through some hoops to “open” such a Network Share.
Either the “server” is listed in Finder on the left, and you’ll have to click it to be confronted with selecting a share-name and entering username and password, OR you have to use “Go” menu in Finder and select “Connect to server” option – which comes with even more questions.
Both options are rather cumbersome, if not slow, if you ask me (Apple: please pay attention here – this is a rather poor user experience!).
So this is where ConnectMeNow is supposed to come in. I just got tired of doing all this manual labor.
On that note: The Finder is even with ConnectmeNow not the best way to get to your mounted network shares.
When using ConnectMeNow, the easiest way is by going to the “/Volumes/” directory on your Mac where you’ll find all mounted network shares that are active.
More about that later, since ConnectMeNow also allows you to create your own directory where a mount should be placed and ConnectMeNow has the option in the menu to reveal the mount in Finder with a single click.
Naming convention for Shares, Sessions, etc …
ConnectMeNow was originally designed to just support SMB (Samba) network shares, but as usual with my silly “little” projects, things went out of control.
So not it supports NFS, SSHFS, FTP, AFP, etc. which are all still legit “network shares”.
Since I frequently use SSH, I’ve added SSH as well. However, SSH is technically not a network share, rather a remote shell/terminal access.
As you may notice, I still use the phrase “share” quite often, and with that (incorrect as it may be) I’m also referring to SSH connections.
ConnectMeNow – How did we get to version 4?
Even though previous versions worked well, I just could not resist making a new version.
The main reason was actually to try to reduce the load on the system as much as possible.
In previous versions I’ve used polling for certain activities, which isn’t ideal.
So to reduce that, I’ve used some new techniques and API calls, and kernel related tricks.
Additionally, I found myself annoyed with the occasional beachball appearing.
To avoid that I’ve added multithreading, so that mounting, unmounting and status checks, all happen in separate tasks, that are only created if needed of course.
A bonus for this all, is that I now have Apple Silicon hardware available, so a native ARM64 version is available now as well.
Some of the less relevant tools found in v3, I did remove to try to make the application more task oriented and light weight.
Additionally, I hope I changed the settings so that things are more intuitive.
To distinguish from previous version, I also changed the icon design.
Quick overview of Features
ConnectMeNow has quite a lot to offer.
It has most of the functionality as v3, just improved some of the functions and added a few new features.
Just to name a few …
- Protocols support for SMB, AFP, NFS, SSH, SSHFS, WebDAV and FTP.
- Dark Theme support, in the menu bar as well
- Auto Mount at startup
- Auto Mount after a network change, with the option to do this only for a specific gateway (network)
- Auto Remount after waking up from sleep or standby
- Auto Mount when a device appears in the network
- Support for Fallback servers, for when a server is not available
- SSHFS (needs macFuse) support with automatic password entry or SSH keys
- SSH support with automatic password entry or SSH Keys
- Support for Generating and Installing SSH keys on server(s)
- Mount, unmount, and Reveal-in-Finder from the ConnectMeNow menu
- Open or Close SSH connections straight from the menu
- Indication in the menu if a connection is active or not
- Grouping options in the menu
- Official Mount (Apple API) or Fast Mount support
- Mount in /Volumes/ or in your own preferred mount directory
- Mount/Unmount notifications related to the shares defined in ConnectMeNow
- Detection of Mount, Unmount, Standby/Sleep/Wake up, and network changes
- Sharing of configurations amongst multiple Mac’s
- Optional Ping and/or Wake On LAN before mounting
- Run script after mount completion
- Much more detailed debug log, with option to debug to Console
- Intel 64 bit and Apple Silicon native applications (signed and notarized)
- Icon visible in dock when opening settings
- More modern design of the application
- and more … oh, and it’s still free …
Some things to pay attention to …
You can import v3 settings, but this will be based on a best effort …
During the life span of v3, I’ve used 2 different ways of storing the settings. Both should work with the import tool.
However, some of the features in v4 have changed, so keep in mind that the settings are imported based on a best effort.
After an import it is a good idea to briefly go through the settings and verify things.
Older ConnectMeNow (v1 and v2) settings are not supported.
FTP is unfortunately READ ONLY …
Unfortunately, Apple’s implementation of the FTP protocol only allows us to mount an FTP connection as “read-only“.
If anyone knows about a macFuse add-on that supports read/write FTP, then please leave a comment below, I’d be happy to look into this as an option.
SSHFS requires macFuse …
If you’d like to use SSHFS, and I can actually recommend giving it a try, then you must install macFuse (also known as OSXFuse) and their SSHFS extension.
macFuse and the SSHFS add-on are both FREE.
SSHFS is actually quite a bit faster than some SMB implementations.
Bonus: macFuse allows you to add support for other filesystems to your Mac as well (for example, read/write support for ext3 and NTFS drives).
Getting started with Mounting Network Shares and ConnectMeNow
Ok, so much for a quick intro, let’s get started with ConnectMeNow.
p.s. if you like ConnectMeNow, then a friendly request to please like it at Alternativeto.Net as well, so other users can find it as well.
Super cool to see ConnectMeNow being mentioned in Derek Seaman’s IT Blog – Top macOS App picks for 2023.
A nice gold mine on its own, for those looking for useful macOS apps.
ConnectMeNow has also been mentioned in one of the MacObserver Podcasts before.
Feel free to visit MacObserver / MacGeekGab for cool Mac related topics.
You can choose either the Intel version or the new Apple Silicon version (a.k.a. ARM64, AARCH64 or M1/M2 version).
Note that these straight up are native binaries, so pick the right one for your system – these are not so called “fat” binaries that hold both versions.
For those interested: The Change Log can be found at the end of this article.
Not sure what version to use …?
To find out if your Mac is Intel or Apple Silicon based, click “About this Mac“.
Look next to the word Processor or Chip in the opened window.
An Intel Mac will specifically mention the name “Intel“, where as an Apple Silicon Mac will say “Apple“.
Note: The Intel version will run on an Apple Silicon Mac as well. It is just a little less efficient since Rosetta needs to be started as well and translate the Intel code to ARM while running.
Upgrading from ConnectMeNow v3
A few things to know:
- You can run v4 next to v3 without any conflict. So if you’d like to test v4 before having it replace v3, you can.
- v4 has an “import v3 config” option, which tries to import the v3 config file by the best of its abilities (see below).
- If you decide to remove v3, then do not forget to follow the v3 Uninstall instructions.
You can downloaded here:
Download - ConnectMeNow4-v4.0.11-macOS-arm64.dmg
Download - ConnectMeNow4-v4.0.11-macOS-x86-64.dmg
If a beta version becomes available, then it will be listed here.
Currently there is no beta version available.
Installation is easy: open the DMG file you have just downloaded and drag the ConnectMeNow icon to the Applications directory icon.
Installing ConnectMeNow v4
Removing ConnectMeNow is pretty easy as well:
Simply drag the ConnectMeNow icon from the Applications directory to the Trashcan.
You may also want to remove the configuration files, even though they are small, by simple dragging the files to the trash (where “<username>” is your username).
Note: In case you used a custom location for your configuration file, then you’ll have to remove those as well.
These are the only 3 files related to ConnectMeNow:
The protocols, you may or may not have heard of, supported by ConnectMeNow are (same as v3):
SMB, one of the most commonly used protocols for so called “Windows shares” or “Samba Shares’.
Note: back in the day there was CIFS. macOS still supports (kinda) CIFS, by implementing this in SMB.
This can come with some issues, but it usually points to your server or NAS being very old and in desperate need for an update so it starts working with more recent SMB versions.
NFS or Network File System started in the mid 80s as a protocol to share disk space amongst different computers.
It is still supported by quite a few platforms, but it is not used as much as SMB. You will find NFS on most Linux/Unix based machines, where it has its origins as well (Sun).
AFP or Apple Filing Protocol is Apple’s protocol for working with network shares.
Obviously this protocol is typically only used on Mac based computers, and if the stories are true – which I think they very well may be – even Apple is dropping it in favor of SMB.
FTP or File Transfer Protocol, has been around for quite some time and is often used to share files with a web server.
For the longest time, FTP was the only way to download files from the Internet. It still is a very commonly used protocol for those accessing web servers, but more so for developers or admins who know what they are doing (most of the time anyway hahah).
FTP shares are Read Only: due to limitations of macOS’s FTP implementation, a FTP network share can only be mounted as read only!
WebDAV or Web Distributed Authoring and Versioning, is not used very much either.
I’m not 100% sure if this is really the fact, but to me it feels like this was thought as an alternative to FTP, allowing the user “easier” and more reliable access to their web servers (WebDAV is after all a HTTP extension – read: web server).
SSHFS or SSH File System, is maybe a little bit of an odd duck here. It runs file sharing over the SSH protocol. This comes with interesting possibilities, especially when a server or NAS is already running SSH (Secure Shell, kinda like a remote DOS prompt), since there is no need to install another network sharing protocol. The latter being great when you have no say in what is being installed on said server.
SSHFS will only work is macFuse is installed, with its SSHFS add-on.
SSH: I do have to get into my NAS, Firewall or Raspberry Pi every now and then with SSH, so I have added SSH support as well.
SSH is not a network file share protocol like the other protocols mentioned here. It is most commonly used for a remote terminal/shell/DOS prompt.
For sharing a directory using a network share, most protocols rely on these parameters:
Server address, path (this is typically the share-name on the “server”, not to be confused with the actual directory on the server), username and password.
Some protocols allow for some extra wiggle room, where the user fro example can define a specific network port, or pass special command line parameters.
In a more professional environment, SMB shares can also require you to provide a so called “domain” name.
The use of domain is something you’ll see in companies, rarely at home.
At first start, the menu will be quite empty – after all, you’d still have to add your shares.
ConnectMeNow4 – Empty menu
But once you’ve created shares, and optional menu groups, things will look different for sure.
(The menu looks quite similar to what you may have seen in v3)
The menu will show icons based on the selected protocol and they will indicate if a share or connection is active or not.
Additionally we can make groups in the menu, which can be a horizontal line, a group name, or both.
Here for example the group “QNAP File Shares” and “SSH Connections”.
Note: the first menu group will never have a horizontal line and a group name will always show in gray (under the horizontal line, if applicable).
When clicking an inactive item (for example “Bender AllShares (SMB)”), ConnectMeNow will try to mount or open the connection.
However when the connection is already active (eg. “Marvin AllShares (SMB)”) then a sub-menu will appear.
For mounted network shares this will show the option to reveal the mounted share in Finder (“Reveal in Finder“) or to “Unmount Share“.
With active SSH connections, you will see the option to “Close SSH Session“.
ConnectMeNow4 – Menu Features
This chapter tries to briefly show you how to define new shares, with their basic settings and advanced option.
Adding shares is done by selecting the “Settings” – “Share Definitions” option in the ConnectMeNow menu.
This will open the preferences window where you can define shares.
Adding a new network share or SSH connection is done by clicking the “Create new share or SSH connection” button ( ) in the lower left corner of the settings window.
Share Details – The Basic Settings needed for every share
By default you will be presented with the basic details of a share.
As you can see, there is a tab for more advanced settings – for each individual share.
Most users will not need the advanced settings.
Notice the Test Mount button at the bottom right to test if your mount/share settings are working as expected.
After a successful test, you can use the Test Unmount button to unmount or close your share.
Example Share setting
After clicking the “Add new share” button, a new form will appear and in this form you can start by entering what the name should be in the menu, by entering this in the “Menu Title” field.
You’ll see a few options below that line allowing ConnectMeNow to automatically name your share based on selections you’ll make, like name of the server, connection type (mount type), remote path and if it utilizes Wake On Lan or not. This is optional, so you can uncheck the “Auto Menu Title” option if you’d rather type a name yourself.
The next step is making a selection of what type of connection we’d like – set “Share Type” to the preferred protocol.
When doing so, you may see some fields change, appear or disappear. This is related to the capabilities of the selected share type.
As mentioned before: SSHFS requires macFUSE to be installed with the SSHFS add-on.
In the next steps, the selected protocol may or may not support certain options and will be displayed accordingly.
SSH and SSHFS do not support the selection of the path on the server – so that field will not be shown when setting up an SSH or SSHFS share.
The WebDAV protocol supports HTTP and HTTPS – it is recommended to use HTTPS by leaving “Use SSL” checked.
Auto Mount when ConnectMeNow start
Each connection can be mounted right away when ConnectMeNow starts by selecting this option, which happens usually when you start your Mac or login to your Mac.
On Mount, reveal in Finder
This option, opens up Finder, showing the mounted drive (or its content) after a successful mount.
SSH does not mount to a directory, so Reveal on Mount will not be available with this protocol.
For every server “kind” we will need to enter the “Server Address” – I mean, where else would we go right?
The “server” can be even the smallest computer and this can be entered as an IP address (recommended) or a computer name.
The Ping button allows you to test and see if you Mac can ping the set server.
Here we enter only the IP address or computer-name – do not add the path on the server or any protocol indictors!
Note: Using computer names only works well, when your DNS knows the IP address that goes with this computer name. Not all setups work equally well with this when your Mac cannot retrieve the IP address based on the computer name.
Not all network devices support being pinged, and some even have ping intentionally disabled.
Some protocols allow you to use a specific TCP/IP port number, for example: SSH, SSHFS, WebDAV and FTP.
Normally there is no need to change this value. Only do so if you know what you’re doing.
Not all protocols support this (for example SSH and SSHFS), but this is typically the share name on the server (SMB) or the actual path on the server (FTP).
When left blank certain protocols, for example SMB and AFP, may result in a popup window asking for what share you’d like to access when mounting a network share – or the mount may fall all together.
The “Domain” name is typically only needed in a corporate setting where a domain controller is being used – consult your IT administrator if needed.
Domains are rarely used in private/home settings – leave it blank if you’re not sure.
Naturally we like to keep things secure so login credentials can be used as well (username and password),
If not entered, when mounting a share, you will be asked for username and password.
The password can be revealed, however you will be asked for permission to reveal this information. This can only be done by an admin (which usually is you).
To reveal a passwords, if hidden, the administrator password will be requested.
Installing SSH Keys …
For SSH and SSHFS you will see an Install SSH key button. Clicking this will make ConnectMeNow try to install SSH keys on your server so a password is no longer needed when connecting to this server. Installing the keys requires username and password to be entered. Once the keys have been installed, blank the password so ConnectMeNow know to use the key instead of a password. For more information, read this article: SSH Login without a Password.
Advanced Options – For specific purposes
Under this tab you will find settings for less common features, often used by the more experienced users or exceptional circumstances.
Auto Mount Options
Besides the Auto Mount option that gets triggered when ConnectMeNow gets started, I’ve included a few other options.
ConnectMeNow4 – Advanced Auto Mount
Mount on Appear (not recommended)
The first one, is when a certain IP address appears in a network.
For example, the share you configured is on the server with the IP address 192.168.1.100.
ConnectMeNow will keep looking for that IP address until it finds it, and mounts it when it does.
The reason why I would not recommend using this option is that there is no standard mechanism where a newly appearing IP address will report to your Mac.
This means that every so many seconds, ConnectMeNow has to check if the IP address is in the network, by trying to ping it.
As you can imagine, this does not only take resources of your Mac, but also generates quite a bit of network traffic which may be undesirable.
Mount On Network Change
When your Mac changes network, for example because you plugged in an Ethernet cable, or switched WiFi network, macOS will alert ConnectMeNow.
This could be a good moment to try to mount a drive, for example when you arrive at the office with your laptop.
Having said that, randomly trying to mount a drive may work just fine, but we can even refine the attempts by limiting these attempts when certain Default Gateways appear.
Now quite a lot of Default Gateways (your router or modem) share the same IP addresses, since they need to be in a private IP address range, which can be:
- Class A: 10.0.0.0 to 10.255.255.255
- Class B: 172.16.0.0 to 172.31.255.255
- Class C: 192.168.0.0 to 192.168.255.255
This could cause a problem of course when your router at home has IP address 192.168.1.1, and the router at work for example as well.
Where these will be most likely be different is their MAC address.
So for identifying the right Default Gateway (router/modem), we can enter here the MAC address.
Since MAC addresses are a pain to find and enter, I’ve added some tools to help you find the right one.
Typically you just click the Detect Default Gateway button and IP address and MAC address will be pre-populated.
Note: The IP address is irrelevant for ConnectMeNow and is only shown for your reference.
Mount Style and Mount Location
ConnectMeNow allows you to mount in two ways, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
ConnectMeNow4 – Advanced Mount Style
System Call (uses the official macOS API)
The biggest advantage of using a System Call is that this is how Apple intended it to be done.
This is also the only method that (optionally) allows you to mount in
This would be the recommended method for the average user.
Command-line (uses plain Terminal commands)
Using the command-line option comes with the advantage of speed and options.
Downside though is that you can not mount in
Advantages are speed, and the option to add command-line options.
That makes it also more suitable for experienced user, or protocols that require special options in your setup, not supported by the standard System Call (API).
The extra options, like the example here “-o follow_symlinks” will be inserted into the command-line statement.
Be careful how you use this.
Location: Default or Custom
Typically, a network share is mounted or tied to an empty directory. This way the user can go to this directory like any other directory and access files.
By default macOS uses the directory
/Volumes to collect these shares.
For each mounted network share, macOS will automatically create a sub directory in the
However, the command-line functions to mount a network share however are not allowed to mount in that directory.
/Volumes, you can also make your own “mount” directory.
I like to use a directory in my home directory and call it
/Users/<username>/MountPoints – but you can pick anything you want (as long as you have access to it to course).
Note: Using a custom path is supported by both mount styles.
With a custom mount directory, we have two options:
- The custom directory gets automatically a sub directory for each network share (like seen in
/Volumes) – recommended.
- The custom directory will become the directory representing the network share (check “do not create sub-directory for mounting“).
I would recommend option 1 where we leave “do not create sub-directory for mounting” unchecked, unless you know what you’re doing.
Besides the Auto Mount and Mount Style options, you will find a few more handy little options here as well.
ConnectMeNow4 – Advanced Extras
PING and WOL
Before doing a mount attempt, a PING can be helpful to wake up a share or server (there is a global setting for this as well, see Preferences).
Now a PING is not how you wake a sleeping server, so for that we also offer a Wake On LAN option to wake up a server or NAS.
Note that for Wake On LAN (or WOL), we will need the MAC address of the server or NAS.
With the provided tools you can try to Detect the MAC address (if the first attempt fails, give it a second and try again).
Broadcast mask and port can be set here as well. Not sure what to use? Then just use the defaults by clicking Default.
It is a good idea to test if Wake On LAN works before relying on it, so clicking Test Wake On LAN is recommended to make sure.
The mount delay is recommended when having to wake up a NAS or Server with for example Wake On LAN, or when accessing for example a new network.
Sometimes it takes a little before your Mac actually sees or can access such a device. This is where this can become quite useful.
As an example: my very old backup NAS takes less than 5 seconds to become visible for my Mac. So for that one I set the mount delay to 10 seconds to give it some breathing room.
Run Script after Mounting
After a mount completes, it can sometimes be useful to run a script.
Think about activating a printer, or a script that makes a copy of certain files and even puts the server back to sleep if you want it to.
Try this for the fun of it:
say "server access, granted"
The Fallback server allows you to select another server for when the mount to this share fails.
Which can be practical for the use of backup servers, or for example use share1 for when you’re at home, and share2 for when you’re at work (laptop).
If the fallback server fails as well, then ConnectMeNow will try to mount the fallback server of the fallback server, etc.
A fallback server must to be defined as a regular share before it appears in this list.
This fallback server must be using the same protocol.
To avoid endless looping: prevent using a fallback server that has a fallback server as well.
Adding a group works in a similar way. Click the “Add Group” button ( ) in the lower left corner of the Shares window.
This will create a new horizontal bar for the menu.
Optionally you can give this “group” a title by entering text in the “Menu Label” field.
- The group title (Menu Title) is optional, leave it blank if you do not want to use a label here,
- A group can have a horizontal line, but this is optional,
- If the horizontal line is the first item in the menu, then this line will not be shown (a limitation of the menu),
- The Menu Label, or Group Title, will show as greyed/disabled in the menu to distinguish them from actual network shares.
ConnectMeNow4 – Menu Group
ConnectMeNow also has a few settings, that cover the entire application and all defined shares.
You can find this in the ConnectMeNow menu, under “Settings” – “Application Preferences“.
You can toggle back and forth between Share Definitions and Application preferences with the buttons Shares and Preferences at the bottom of the settings window.
Most of these options are easy to understand, with a little hint …
Common Application setting
Information and Notifications
In this section you can Enable or Disable …
- Notifications when shares are mounted or unmounted (only for those defined in ConnectMeNow!),
- Warnings and confirmation dialogs, for example when you delete something,
- Application hints (little text balloons when you hover over certain items).
Generic Application Settings
Here we can determine if …
- ConnectMeNow should start when your computer starts,
- ConnectMeNow should save and restore window positions and size,
- and … if Passwords should be shown, or should always be masked (you can still look at them, but you’ll need to enter the admin password to reveal the passwords).
Here we find some tools that are mounting related …
- Should shares that were mounted when your computer went to sleep mode, be re-mounted when your computer wakes up?
- Should all shares and mounts, defined in ConnectMenow, be quickly unmounted when there is no network?
- Should all shares and mounts, defined in ConnectMenow, be quickly unmounted when ConnectMeNow is closed?
- Should a server always be pinged first, before mounting a share (overrides setting for individual shares)?
- Reveal in Finder show the content of the mounted share, or the directory content that holds the mounted share?
This doesn’t have much of a function anymore, since most detection mechanisms are bot implemented differently than in v3.
The only thing that would require polling is when you want a share to be mounted when the IP address appears in a network.
I would recommend a value between 30 and 60 seconds.
If none of the shares are set to “Auto Mount” – “On server IP address Appear“, then the “pollution” on your network will be negligible.
With pollution I mean: to detect an IP address in the network, ConnectMeNow will have no choice than trying to ping that IP address.
As you can imagine, this may be undesirable and maybe even unneeded.
Having said that; if not absolutely needed, the consider setting this to a higher value, and avoid using “Auto Mount” – “On server IP address Appear“.
For Admins only – Debug Logging
The two options here should by default be unchecked.
Debugging messages is great and all, but if not needed they produce more overhead than needed.
This isn’t anything dramatic of course, I just like to keep things “clean”.
Debug messages can be send to Console (found in Applications Utilities), which is fairly common for macOS applications, and can be enabled by checking “Log to System Console”.
Keep in mind though that this may not be as wonderful as one would hope, as messages do end up in a pile with tons of messages that are not very relevant for our purposes.
You can limit the messages by setting the filter in Console to “process“-“connectmenow4“.
To find our messages quicker, I’ve implemented a debug log window, as seen with ConnectMeNow v3, with more advanced features.
The messages in this window are much easier to go through and there is even a search function.
This Log Window can be accessed by simultaneously pressing Control Option Command, which will reveal a Show Log and Clear Log button while keeping these keys pressed..
Less Common Application setting
These settings are less used, or modified, but can proof quite useful for specific users.
Settings Config File Location
As with previous ConnectMeNow versions, you can place the config file in alternative locations, so these are being backed up automatically, or shared with other users or computers.
I’ll illustrate this with how I use this myself.
I have more than one Mac, and I want them all to have ConnectMeNow configured the same way.
For this purpose I have defined all shares and settings on one Mac.
These settings will be saved in the default location:
Once I have everything configured the way I like it, I actually tell ConnectMeNow to copy it to a directory on Dropbox, by selecting the “Save preferences in custom path” option, and clicking the Dropbox button and selecting the directory where I want to save the config.
ConnectMeNow will now do two things:
- In the local config file, it will reference to that location in Dropbox, so it can find the shared config next time it starts.
- It will copy the config locally and to the Dropbox location each time it is saved.
Making a backup of your config
Having said that: Sharing files can like this can have its issues. Personally I have not encountered any, but that doesn’t mean it can go side ways at times.
This is why I have added the Backup Config and Load Config buttons – so you can make a backup of a config you like, and load it again if something went wrong.
Please note that passwords in the config files are encrypted.
However,… everything can be hacked, and these files were not designed to protect Fort Knox either.
I do think the protection is pretty decent though, and it will take some effort (I hope) to decrypt the passwords.
System Admin Functions – Preventing Access to Settings
This little section was created with Schools and Companies in mind, where the user should not tinker with or copy settings like passwords and such. Not a 100% guarantee that a user will nog ruin your settings, but at least this is a hurdle for them to get to the settings.
The System Admin can lock down the preferences and share definitions window, so an Admin password is asked when a user wants to access the Preferences or Share Definitions.
The “admin password” is the password of the administrator of the Mac you’re using ConnectMeNow on.
So please be aware that your users should not have admin privileges on this Mac if you want to prevent them from accessing these settings.
When a user tries to access the settings, a popup will request the admin password.
If the user fails to enter the right password, a dialog will appear displaying the “Admin contact info”.
For example the phone extension or email of the system administrator or help desk that can assist with this.
Default New Share Template
Some values or settings for a new Share or Menu Group can be predefined here, and will be used as the initial settings of a new share or menu group.
The idea being that one can enter new shares quicker and more consistent.
At the bottom you will find some obvious buttons:
- Reset Preferences to defaults will reset all settings – this will not change or delete your defined shares.
- Reset the Share Template to Defaults which will not affect existing defined shares of course.
- Import v3 Config will do a best effort attempt to import ConnectMeNow v3 configurations. Since some features have changed or no longer exit, I’d recommend verifying the new settings after an import.
- And, as mentioned before, the option to make a Backup Config of the config file, and the option to Load Config of such a backup at a later time if needed.
Bug Reporting and Feature Requests
Please feel free to report bugs and feature requests in the comments.
Especially with bug reporting it is critical to post version information of your macOS version and ConnectMeNow version.
This is easiest done through the ConnectMeNow menu: Help & About Version info to Clipboard.
Now your clipboard holds version, which looks like this example below, and can be pasted straight into comments.
Version: 4.0.3 (Build 25)
OS: macOS Monterey
Version 12.6.1 (Build 21G217)
Intel x86-64 (64 bits) application
Update 4.0.11 (Oct 21, 2023)
– Added option to hide individual icons from the desktop (when show “Connected Servers” is checked in the Finder options)
– Upgraded macOS target to macOS 11 (Big Sur). This doesn’t mean CMN will not work with older macOS version.
Update 4.0.10 (July 7, 2023)
This version hopefully resolves the password encryption issue.
Under certain circumstances, an encrypted password was not detected as such and was handled as a normal password.
Some users would see their passwords appear as encrypted in the “password” field.
Additional minor bug fix: opening the about window before opening the preferences window would generate an access violation.
Update v4.0.9 (May 28, 2023)
– Improvement: “Show Log” and “Clear Log” buttons now always visible when the option “Log to Log Window” is checked
– Cosmetic fix: Typo APF “AFP Share (Apple Share – Apple Filing Protocol)” (one l) (Smiles)
– Cosmetic fix: “Extra Options” label and “Test Script” button remained visible even if they shouldn’t (Smiles)
– Cosmetic fix: Fixed inconsistency in com.Tweaking4All.ConnectMeNow4.plist vs com.Tweaking4all.ConnectMeNow4.plist (Smiles)
– Bug fix: Issue where by default a new share would always use ‘Command-line’ even though set to ‘System’ (Smiles)
– New feature: Auto Encrypt Username/Password when entered as raw text (eg. manually edit ini file, enter username(s) and/or password(s) as plain text.
Unencrypted usernames/passwords will be encrypted automatically when ConnectMeNow is being closed again.
(This is mostly thought for system administrators that want to auto generate INI files)
Update v4.0.8 (March 15, 2023)
– Fixed a SHHS related bug, caused by fixing another bug in 4.0.7 (thanks Christian for reporting this one!)
Update v4.0.7 (March 13, 2023)
– Bug fix: Mount detection bug when remote path would end with a directory separator
– Bug fix: WebDAV mount detection (failed as it looked for an unlisted username)
– Cosmetics: Typo in mount options hint fixed
– Improvement: Disabled command-line mount style for WebDAV (fails silently 100% of the time)
Update v4.0.6 (Feb. 2, 2023)
– Bug fix: Added path to SSHFS (using root directory if left blank)
– Bug fix: Fixed command-line options bug in SSHFS when using SSH Keys
– Improvement: SSHFS now also supports non “-o” options like compression (-C)
– Improvement: Test mount/unmount button only works when a share is enabled (to avoid conflicts)
– Improvement: Detect missing SSHFS at an earlier stage when trying to do a mount
Update v4.0.5 (Jan. 30, 2023)
– Improvement: Mounting sub-directories (Command-line mount style) in auto created sub directory will be formatted properly (format: Share (Server))
– Bug fix: Percent encoding for username, password and share path
– Bug fix: Mount subdirectory of a hidden ($) share
– Bug fix: Drag and drop beyond last item in shares list would trigger an error or fail
– Bug fix: [visual] Changed domain name example from “WORKGROUP” to “YOURDOMAIN” as this is more appropriate
– Bug fix: Notifications of failing mounts is now done correctly (60 second wait time, like macOS does)
– Test: added 1 second delay between mount attempts (prevent potential race condition)
Update v4.0.4 (Jan. 11, 2023)
– Feature request: Option to enable/disable beep with (un)mount notifications
– Feature request: Added a small notes field with each share, for some optional user notes
– Feature request: Implemented Drag and Drop for reordering shares in list
– Feature: Updated “Network Change” criteria to support IPv4 and IPv6 (used to be only IPv4)
– Bug Fix: “$” got URL Encoded, which made mounting hidden SMB share impossible
– Bug Fix: Special characters in password issue fixed (avoid using double quote!)
– Bug fix: [visual] “Paste” and “Get MAC” button overlap under “Auto Mount”
– Bug fix: [visual] Part of the “Extra options” section in my Advanced panel were cut off
– Bug fix: [visual] Typo in auto mount log
Update 4.0.3 (Dec. 20, 2022)
– Improvement: Added some Terminal tools in log window (output of: mount, ls /Volumes, etc)
– Improvement: When no share defines exist; open main window and ask if blank one should be created (helps first time user/start)
– Bug fix: sometimes CMN still thinks there is no network (related to VPN bug)
– Bug fix: [Visual] Where “Test Mount” button wouldn’t properly position with NFS shares
– Bug fix: [Visual] Text fixed in SSH explanation, when using a password instead of security keys
– Bug fix: [Visual] Info messages in share definitions now align properly to bottom of window
– Bug fix: [Visual] Workaround for Ventura visually being different (spacing) where content would not fit in window
– Bug fix: Directly mounting a sub directory of a share would fail due to slash removal/cleanup.
Update 4.0.2 (Dec. 13, 2022)
This update adds a few features and fixes a few bugs. This will hopefully address the reported issue – please feel free to report if you find new bugs.
Note: v4 should not touch the v3 config file, in case you’d like to test first.
– Improvement: Notification (if enabled!) when a mount fails
– Improvement: “Force save settings” added to menu
– Improvement: Optional Ignore username when doing a mount detection (see if a share is mounted)
– Improvement: Shared file location: added “iCloud Drive” and “Cloud Storage” (used by “One Drive” and “Google Drive”).
– OS Fix: Work around for mount procedure due to ARM64 and/or Ventura bug (still needs more testing!)
– Bug fix: Dark theme: fixed some icon colors on some buttons
– Bug fix: Proper TAB order (when tabbing through controls with keyboard)
– Bug fix: Save settings when shutting down Mac (ARM/Ventura)
– Bug fix: Occasional missing detection of a mounted share
– Bug fix: Network not detected for VPN users