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Samba is a free software implementation of Microsoft's networking system. As of version 3, samba not only provides file and print services for various Microsoft Windows clients but can also integrate with a Windows Server domain, either as a Primary Domain Controller (PDC) or as a Backup Domain Controller. It can also be part of an Active Directory domain.
The name samba comes from inserting two vowels into the name of the standard protocol used by the Microsoft Windows network file system, "SMB" (server message block). Samba was originally called smbserver but the name was changed because of a trademark notice from the company "Syntax" who sold a product named TotalNet advanced Server, and also owned the trademark for SMBserver.
Samba sets up shares for chosen UNIX directories (including all contained subdirectories). These appear to Microsoft Windows users as normal windows folders accessible via the network. Unix users can either mount the shares directly as part of their file structure or, alternatively, can use a utility, smbclient installed with samba to read the shares with a similar interface to a standard command line ftp program. Each directory can have different access privileges overlayed on top of the normal UNIX file protections. For example: home directories would have read/write access for all known users, allowing each to access their own files. However they would still not have access to the files of others unless that permission would normally exist. Note that /etc/samba/netlogon, typically distributed as a read only share, is the logon directory for user logon scripts.
Samba Configuration is achieved by editing a single file (typically installed as /etc/smb.conf or /etc/samba/smb.conf). Samba can also provide user logon scripts and group policy implementation through poledit.
- Samba web site
- 10 years of Samba!
- Samba - definition at eLook Computing Reference
- How Samba was written
- Using Samba 2nd ed. licensed under GFDL
- Setting up Samba
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