How to connect iPad to Macs in LAN

Network ProtocolComputers in LAN use SMB protocol to exchange files. On iPad, or on any other iOS device, it may be problem, because there is no built-in way to get access to computers in LAN. But thanks to App Store and great developers, you just need right app. Best apps I found are, for example, Documents by Readdle, iFiles 2, GoodReader, FileBrowser or FileExplorer Pro. I personally use FileExplorer Pro. In fact, almost any updated file manager can connect to computers in LAN. Apps with SMB support does not have to be file managers – as example I name PDF Expert for editing PDF files and video players nPlayer and OPlayer HD.

As first, you have to enable SMB protocol. In top left corner click on “Apple” menu and choose System preferences. Now find “Sharing”:

System Preferences on Mac

It should looks something like this:

System Preferences on Mac - Sharing

If SMB is enabled, you will see SMB protocol address of your Mac in format smb:// You will need this address. In case SMB is not enabled, click od “Options”:

System Preferences on Mac - SMB

Here enable SMB protocol and in the list below, enable your Mac account. You may need password, the same password you are using to log in into your Mac and this password you will need to connect to your Mac from iPad too. I strongly recommend to set system password to prevent unauthorized access to your Mac.

Now is SMB protocol enabled. Take your iPad and launch app with support for SMB (I mentioned some of them at the beginning) and add new network connection. In my cause, it looks something like this:

LAN Configure on iPad - FileExplorer Pro

Now you will need that SMB protocol address. Some file manager apps can scan LAN for you and you only need to type account name and password, but mostly you have to enter IP address manually. Usually, you don’t have to change port number. Now just type your account name and password. And – awesome! Enjoy access to your Mac from your iPad or any iOS device!

Mac on iPad Pro

Of course, any common feature like copying, renaming or deleting files work. It’s really simple.

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