Bonjour services are very useful for finding and connecting to local services on the network, like Apple TV’s (via AirPlay), printers (via AirPrint), file sharing (via AFP), remote audio (via AirTunes), etc. And using Aerohive’s Free Bonjour Gateway or Bonjour Gateway within one of our devices, these services are now available across an enterprise network too.
However, many organizations have a mix of client devices that are not all Apple. (I know, hard to believe for some of us, right?!) These Bonjour services are still valuable in multi-vendor environments (see Matthew’s Pourquoi Bonjour blog post) and need to be available for many other platforms, including Microsoft Windows, Linux, and Android, to name a few.
To help you utilize Bonjour on such platforms, you’ll need to know about some 3rd party software packages. I’ve done some research and compiled such a list. Enjoy!
Bonjour Packages for Windows:
- Apple Bonjour SDK – If you plan on developing your own software for Windows, you’ll need to grab the Developer SDK from Apple. You’ll also want to check out the Bonjour for Developers website. (Requires a free Apple Developer ID)
- Apple Bonjour Print Services for Windows – allows users to discover and configure Bonjour-capable printers in Windows.
- Bonjour Browser for Windows – a handy little utility to display all of the Bonjour services on the network. Inspired by the Mac OS X version by Tildesoft.
Bonjour Packages for Mac OS X:
- Bonjour Browser (Tildesoft) – a handy little utility to display all of the Bonjour services on the network.
- Wi-Fi Diagnostics – a native Bonjour service browser built into the revamped Wi-Fi Diagnostics on OS X Mountain Lion. This shows most Bonjour services on the local network, but I have still found omissions.
- Bonjour in Safari – a native Bonjour service browser built right into Safari. However, it is limited to discovering and displaying HTTP web services only.
- handyPrint (AirPrint Activator) - runs on a Mac OS X workstation and allows iOS devices to print to legacy printers that don't support AirPrint.
- Printopia – runs on a Mac OS X workstation and allows iOS devices to save to PDF or JPG, send to Dropbox, and print to legacy printers that don't support AirPrint.
Bonjour Packages for iOS:
- Discovery – Bonjour Browser (Tildesoft) – this is the same handy utility as Bonjour Browser on Mac OS X, but for use on iOS devices to display all of the Bonjour services on the network.
Bonjour Packages for Android:
- JmDNS – a Java-based mDNS implementation that can be used for Bonjour service discovery and registration on the network. Fully compatible with Apple’s Bonjour.
- TunesRemote – an implementation of Bonjour using JmDNS in order to control iTunes audio across the network from an Android device.
Bonjour Packages for Linux:
- Avahi – facilitates Bonjour service discovery and connection using the mDNS / DNS-SD protocol suites on Linux systems.
Bonjour Packages that work on multiple platforms:
- AirParrot (Mac OS X, Windows) – allows wireless display mirroring between a Mac or PC and an Apple TV across the network.
- jBonjourBrowser (Mac OS X, Windows, Linux) – replicates the functionality of Bonjour Browser with a Java front-end and can be run on multiple platforms.
- Reflection.app (Mac OS X, Windows) - allow wireless AirPlay mirroring from an iPad 2 (and later) and iPhone 4S (and later) to a Mac or PC. This is great for displaying a mobile device's screen on your workstation, through videoconferencing, while presenting, or capturing the screen and saving it to a video file.
- AirDisplay (Mac OS X, Windows) - turn your mobile device into an extra monitor for your Mac or PC workstation.
For all of these platforms, there are also multiple software applications that use Bonjour under-the-hood to perform service discovery. Those applications are typically focused on performing a single function, and are too numerous to list.
Andrew von Nagy