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Your Mac uses specific software to share files and printers to a network. Without this software, File Sharing will work incorrectly or not at all. Fortunately, this software comes included with the Mac OS (or System 7) installation disks or can be download from Apple.com. This page itemizes the required software and helps you find it if it's missing from your system.
Extensions Manager control panel
The first place to check is the Extensions Manager control panel, accessible from the control panels folder in the Apple menu. The Extensions Manager manages much of your Mac's behind-the-scenes software, including the File Sharing extensions and control panels. Check the Extensions Manager's lists of files against what's required to verify the software is listed. If the software appears but is not highlighted, click on it to highlight it, then restart your Mac to enable the software.
Reinstalling software from disk or CD ROM
If you don't see the software listed in the Extensions Manager, you'll probably need to reinstall it. If you have the Mac OS CD ROM or disks, run the main installer and choose the Custom installation option, which allows you to specify what installers to run. Select the AppleTalk (or Open Transport) installer and it should add all of the necessary software.
Reinstalling software can overwrite existing files of the same name, so read any warning messages that appear during installation to avoid removing any files you want to keep.
Downloading software from Apple
The Apple Software Updates page contains a wide variety of software updates, including the Mac's network software, Open Transport. If you use Mac OS 8 or 9, run this installer to replace your networking software. System 6 & 7 users should read the Network Software Installer notes.
Required Network Software
This section lists the required files for network and File Sharing use on System 6 through Mac OS 9 (i.e., not OS X). Note that you can't download individual files from Apple, but need to download the complete installers (or use the installer described above). Some items vary, depending on your Ethernet adapter and, for System 7, whether you use Open Transport.
Mac OS 9
Control panels: AppleTalk, File Sharing
Extensions: AppleShare, Apple Enet (if you're using the built-in Ethernet port), File Sharing Extension
Mac OS 8
Control Panels: AppleTalk, File Sharing, Users & Groups
Extensions: AppleShare, Ethernet (Built-in) (if you're using the built-in Ethernet port), File Sharing Extension
System 7.5 - System 7.6.1
Control Panels: AppleTalk [Network for non-Open Transport users], File Sharing Monitor, Sharing Setup, Users & Groups
Extensions: AppleShare, Ethernet (Built-in) [or Apple Built-in Ethernet] (if you're using the built-in Ethernet port), File Sharing Extension, Network Extension (for non-Open Transport users)
System 7.0 - System 7.1.2
Control Panels: File Sharing Monitor, Network [AppleTalk for Open Transport users], Sharing Setup, Users & Groups
Extensions: AppleShare, File Sharing Extension, Network Extension
System Folder: Access Privileges, Responder
System 6 Network Notes
If you plan to access shared files and/or printers under System 6, first download System 6.0.8 and Network Software Installer version 1.4.5 from Apple.com. System 6.0.8 adds network printer support and Network Software Installer should install all necessary networking files.
Unlike later System 7 and above, System 6 can only access shared files on other Macs, not share files of its own. System 6 mounts shared files as normal, using the Chooser to load network volumes or printers and accessing them with the Finder.
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