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Apple – AD Login Error: The home folder for the user account is located on AFP or SMB server

I’ve been trying to get our web and print design specialist at work set up with an Apple that was donated to us. It’s not a bad machine but one of the older ones running the Power PC hardware. It’s also running OS X version 10.4.11. Apples are completely new to me so it’s been a challenge. I figured out how to get it to be part of our Active Directory domain a while ago so I thought all would be fine but there have been quite a few problems getting it to work smoothly.

One of the issues is logging on to the computer when home drives are assigned through the Active Directory profile. As a Domain Admin, when I would sign in I would get the message

The home folder for the user account is located on an AFP or SMB server

and it would not log me in. Upon trying again immediately, it would log me in and my home drive would be mapped just fine! I thought it was annoying but we could deal with it at first but when I had the user try to log in with an account that was not an admin they repeatedly got the error and were not able to log on at all.

A bit of searching led me to an Apple Discussion Forum where I saw that an edit of one file /etc/hostconfig would help. The change is

AUTOMOUNT=-NO-

changing from the YES that is currently in the file. I’m not clear on the exact cause of this but it is definitely a bug. Well, now it works so that part is down. More issues later.

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