1) Airport Extreme - I currently have an Airport Extreme attached to one of my workstations which is serving as my main router with a dedicated IP. I'm just in testing mode with my new server and wondering if I need to do anything to the Airport's configuration to make it work with the Server? Does the Server need to administer the functions of theAirportExtreme? Or is it ok to leave it attached to the workstation? Or does it not make any difference?
The Server app is not required to manage your airport.
The server app can automatically open ports for you, so it makes life easier for a home-server-administrator.
Continue managing your Airport or whatever NAT router you prefer any way you choose.
2) Automount Shared Folder/Drive - I would like my users (who are mostly using MacBookPros with they take home and bring back to work) to be able to Automount our shared data drive when they come in to work. I read the help section regarding AutoMount, but it a) referred to using ServerAdmin, which I understand has been eliminated from 10.8 (dont know why they are still referring to it in the help!) and b) it talks about AutoMounting Home Folders, but not shared Drives/Folders.
You can drag a mounted sharepoint to the right-side of a user's dock.
It will then remember the sharepoint, and its 1-click to open it when needed,
This is my preference with laptops.
You can also add the sharepoint to your user's login items (on their workstations, System Prefs, UsersGroups/, User, Login Items - I don't like to do this with laptops because it causes a login delay when they aren't in the locaiton of the sharepoint.
Either method is simple.
I even use Safari bookmarks to get people to a server. Go to the addressbar and type: afp://email@example.com (with your real IP) then bookmark it. You can also drag that that URL to the desktop to have a location file which will ALSO take you to the server.
So Lots of ways... Depends on users/environment.
3) Firewall - I have a static IP and want my users to be able to connect using VPN. I am buying a SSL for the domain. Wondering if the combination of the built in firewall, plus the SSL, plus the built in VPN is secure enough, or should I be investing in a solution such as the SonicWall TZ100.
If you aren't going to have anything except for VPN open to the public, then you won't need SSL.
VPN, but nature, is already encrypted and does not use SSL.
If you will run Mail, Web, Calendar, Contacts, etc and don't want to requires users to VPN, then you should use SSL.
TIP: Fromt the start, use a fqdn for your server. Don't use a .private or something fictitious.
If you own mydomain.com, then setup myserver.mydomain.com and make it your server's hostoname from the get-go.
Later, you'll be glad you used a proper FQDN
Apologies for not thanking you sooner. Your answers were really helpful. Thank you !
Regarding VPN, I've set everything up according to the manual, but am unable to connect. I've checked all my addresses, settings, etc, but it consistently tries to connect, then fails. I've read in some places here that "VPN in Mountain Lion Server is broken". I can't imagine that it really doesnt work at all. Any pointers for successful use of VPN?
I'm glad I was a help.
You may want to move your VPN questions to a new thread title as such.
You shoud provide more detail in that post:
How have you configured VPN?
PPTP or L2TP
Did you map ports? What specific ports?
What type of router?
What do you see in server logs when you try to connect