If you work on a Mac in one place and on Windows in another, and use the same remote file server, you may have noticed some pesky little files getting in the way on the Windows side. Does ._DS_Store and ._myfilename look familiar to you? If not, no need to read further.
If you have seen files like that, then maybe you know what a pain they are. They’re invisible on a Mac, but on a non Mac they are very visible. And very useless. (Some would argue that they’re useless on a Mac too, but that’s a different bar brawl.)
Here’s what happens: let’s say you work on a Mac and connect to a file server via, say WebDAV or SMB share, and you move some files from your Mac to the server. Then the next day you go to the other office, connect to the same server from a Windows computer. Then you see a bunch of files that look kind of like duplicates: little 1KB files with a name like ._therealfilename magically appeared in the directory where you moved some files from your Mac.
These pesky little files are called resource forks. The other clutter bugs show up as one file per folder named .DS_Store. Apple has a solution that prevents those from getting copied over, requiring a very simple one-liner in the Terminal (necessary for each user account on the Mac, if desired):
defaults write com.apple.desktopservices DSDontWriteNetworkStores true
Apples’s “solution” for getting rid of the resource forks (._myfilename files) is, well, get rid of them. That is, they suggest you delete them from the server. Gee thanks.
Another option is Blue Harvest shareware, which uses a preference pane to get rid of the pain. (Sorry.) I’m really looking forward to checking that out and getting rid of this problem.
Thanks to Low End Mac for the info!
Update: BlueHarvest does the trick!