For years I've accessed my Linux files from the Mac via NFS, CIFS/SMB (Samba, and Transmit's Disk feature. When I tried the latter to stream some video on my HP MicroServer NAS I found it was too slow (presumably it pre-downloads the entire file) and it actually crashed my Airport Extreme half-way through. I've always wanted to setup Netatalk AFP, so this provided the perfect opportunity.
Tips and inspiration on:
- Kremalicious's HowTo: Make Ubuntu A Perfect Mac File Server And Time Machine Volume
- Trollop's OS X 10.7 Lion, Time Machine & Netatalk 2.2
I didn't run into any particular problems with Netatalk or Avahi on this Debian Squeeze install, and can now browse the Network list and connect to the volumes (just ext3 on LVM). VideoLan happilly streams. All good. Next (at some point) is Time Machine.
I briefly considered iSCSI, but I've read of people hitting problems with the globalSAN ($89), and having more success with ATTO's Xtend SAN iSCSI Initiator ($195), but that's a little steep for just an experiment when AFP works fine.