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Connecting to Windows Fileshares from a Mac

  1. In Finder
  2. Menubar > Go > Connect to Server
  3. Address = smb:fileserver/sharename
    - or cifs:

Use CIFS instead of SMB?

What is the difference between CIFS and SMB?

Is it just forcing SMB1 instead of SMB2 or SMB3? Following suggests so:

CIFS (Common Internet File System) is just another name for the SMB protocol, but using it in the server URL forces the Finder to use the older (not broken) SMB1 implementation, rather than the buggy SMB2. It worked for me with both my NAS and my Windows PC, so there's a good chance it will work for you.

But following suggests it's using DNS instead of NetBIOS for name resolution:

CIFS (Common Internet File System) is a refinement of SMB (Server Message Blocks). SMB is the term for Microsoft's file sharing technology as used in Windows. CIFS was proposed by them as an “open” version of SMB for filesharing over the Internet and is used by other platforms such as Unix.

If you're having trouble with SMB then something in your setup related to Windows file sharing, perhaps WINS server settings or authentication, is not quite right, whereas the more generic CIFS is able to connect.

Also, SMB uses TCP 139, while CIFS uses TCP 445 – CIFS also uses DNS resolution before NetBIOS name resolution.

If there is a firewall blocking TCP 139 or NetBIOS name resolution isn't working properly, this could be the cause of SMB: not working properly.

CIFS/SMB difference | Official Apple Support Communities

==== My Experiences ====

When saving files in Adobe InDesign to a Windows fileshare, it was setting the hidden attribute. The fix was to use cifs:
fileserver/sharename instead of smb:fileserver/sharename

connecting_to_windows_fileshares_from_a_mac.txt · Last modified: 2018/04/09 09:56 (external edit)