File-sharing: What's my exposure?

in macOS edited January 2014
I have a home network--2 macs behind a switch/NAT firewall--and there are many times I want to swap files between the two. Anyway, I'm too paranoid to leave "file-sharing" on. Am I right to be paranoid or is there a way to enable it and still maintain the safety of my little home network?

If so, how can I actually test it to verify that it is safe?

Btw, is there a way for one Mac to access the CD-RW connected to the other Mac via the network? That would be really cool if it could.



  • Reply 1 of 4
    wmfwmf Posts: 1,164member
    As long as you use passwords that nobody else knows or can guess, you should be OK.

    I don't think networked CD-RW drives are possible.
  • Reply 2 of 4
    bkuchtabkuchta Posts: 18member
    Unless you have the AppleShare port (548) fowarded to a computer at your router, no one should be able to see a thing from the outside. However, even if they could see your computer from the outside, it doesn't matter unless you don't have it password protected.

    I have AppleShare (port 548) and FTP (port 20&21) forarded to my computer at the router just so I can access my computer when I'm not home. It comes in handy sometimes, just be sure you don't have any password-less users. And anything in "Public" folders is viewable by guests. So either keep stuff out of those folders, or change the permissions on them.

    I think you should be able to share CD's by default. (It just worked for me anyway.)

    If you want to see what your router lets through, open network utility and run portscan on your router's external ip. (go to to get that)
  • Reply 3 of 4
    Turn it on and forget about it.

    As others have said, unless your router is configured specifically to let outside users access your AppleShare network, no one will see it. And even if they could, they would have to enter a username and a password. No user list for them!

    And, you should be able to hare any mounted volume, including any mounted CD-R's and CR-RW's (and I suppose, the DVD versions too!)
  • Reply 4 of 4
    fuzz_ballfuzz_ball Posts: 390member
    Thanks for all your help!
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