I am a new Mac user and have struggled mightily to find an answer to this question in recent days. I’m running a MacOS Sierra client, and sharing a folder of files with other Macs on my local network. I have given them sharing-only accounts with read-write access, but I want to be able to monitor which users access, modify, and delete the various files in my folder.

I have seen one promising answer that told somebody to install the Server app and read logs within that. I have two questions though:

  • Is there no built-in way for me to do this within a MacOS Sierra client?
  • The logs on the Server app seem to show activity by IP address. I may have various users logging in from the same computer at various times, so I need to monitor based on user account rather than IP address.

Is this even possible? Seems like it should be, but I’m coming up empty. Could anyone point me in the right direction on this?

  • Just to be clear - if you do enable logging of file access and modifications - you may need to deal with millions of rows of records a day. I'm curious - let's say you have this record and it's easy to manage - what will you actually do? Are you worried about who deleted a file or that you don't have a backup? What's the larger goal? – bmike Oct 15 '17 at 15:24
  • Yes I definitely don't want millions of rows of info. I work in a small healthcare office and HIPAA requires me to have visibility on who is using files, in case they start doing anything unsavory. Not really worried about file deletions since we keep backups. Just don't want to be in the news for having a rogue employee that we never knew about because we weren't looking. – Karen Oct 15 '17 at 22:05
  • HIPAA can be hard. I have seen many people that use ACL and periodic audits of configuration to be more than enough for strict access control and reasonable assurance that only authorized people access PHI content. The link previously shows how internet files sent over public WiFi meet the requirements of HIPAA - you should be able to make a far more secure situation on a Mac sharing files locally. – bmike Oct 15 '17 at 22:37

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