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Samba Essentials for Windows Administrators

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Samba Essentials for Windows Administrators


  • Sorry, this book is no longer in print.
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  • Copyright 2002
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/4"
  • Pages: 368
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-040942-1
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-040942-3

Save money while improving reliability and performance! The step-by-step Samba guide for everyone who manages Windows networks!

  • Deploy Samba file and print services—step by step!
  • Choose your configuration: "easy" or "100% customizable!"
  • Save money and improve network reliability!
  • Includes advanced techniques: PDCs, security, WANs, fax, and more
  • No Linux/UNIX knowledge required!

Using Samba for file and print sharing can save you a fortune—and it can dramatically improve your network's reliability and performance! But most Samba documentation is written for UNIX/Linux experts—not the Windows administrators who need it most. In this book, expert Windows sysadmin Gary Wilson walks you step by step through Samba planning, deployment, configuration, and management, showing Windows users exactly how to achieve the best results with the fewest problems.

  • Choose your approach—"easy" or "totally customizable!"
  • Learn basic Linux administration from a Windows user's point of view
  • Use Samba as a Primary Domain Controller and replace expensive Windows NT/2000 Servers!
  • Manage file services using the Web-based SWAT tool
  • Maximize security in both LAN and WAN environments
  • Provide fax services for your entire organization
  • Contains expert tips and troubleshooting guidance throughout!

Finally, someone's explained Samba so Windows administrators can understand it—and use it!

Sample Content

Table of Contents




1. Samba and Windows.

The Secret to Free High-Quality Software. Samba Put Free Software onto Office Networks. Why Is It Called Samba? The History of Samba. Comparing Samba and Windows. Samba's Strengths. Lower Costs for Software and Hardware. Open Source Licensing. Vendor Independence. Improved Network Security. Web-Based Administration. Linux's Legendary Stability. Where Samba and Windows conflict. Microsoft Sets Its Own Standards. Samba is Like NT 4, not Windows 2000. Windows Servers Are Best for Domain Controllers. Windows Has Finer Access Control. Samba Requires Additional Skills. Windows Has More Hardware Support. Linux and Windows. Linux is Case-Sensitive. Linux Uses the Forward Slash. Linux Has no Unerase Feature. Linux Doesn't Require File Extensions. Linux Doesn't Use Drive Letters. Some Common Linux Questions.

2. Installing and Configuring Samba.

Checking Whether Samba Is Installed. How to See Whether Samba Is Installed. When to Use the Installed Version. Samba Versions. When to Update. How to Get the Samba Software. Updating Linux. Using Webmin to Install Updates. Compiling Samba. Matching Red Hat's configuration. A Look at What's Installed. Administering Samba with Webmin and SWAT. Setting up Webmin for Samba administration. Using SWAT. The SWAT options. Home. Globals. Shares. Printers. Status. View. Password. Initial Configuration. Base Settings. Samba's Configuration Variables. Security Settings. The Security Parameter. The Encrypt Passwords Option. Guest Accounts. Tuning Settings. Dead Time. Socket Options. Starting Samba Services. Joining a Domain. Create a Computer Account on the Domain Controller. Update the Samba Configuration. Join the Domain. User Management. Matching Windows and Linux Usernames. Getting Help. Help on SWAT's Home Page. The Online Manual. Help on Configuration Pages. Samba's Email Help Lists. Commercial Support.

3. The Samba File Server.

The Homes Share. Securing the Homes Share. Setting Up Linux Directories for Sharing. Linux File Permissions. Setting Permissions from Windows. Creating Directories for Samba Shares. Linux Settings for a Share for a Single User. Linux Settings for a Share for a Group of Users. Linux Settings for a Public Share. A Shortcut to Creating a Share in Samba. Setting Up Shares. The Basic Group Share. Security Options. Invalid Users and Valid Users. Admin Users. Read List and Write List. Force User and Force Group. Read Only. Create Mask and Directory Mask. Force Create Mode and Force Directory Mode. Hosts Allow and Hosts Deny. Filename Handling Options. Browsing Options. File Locking Options. Miscellaneous Options. The Basic Group Share, Short Version. Adding Features to Homes Share. A Secure Group Share. A Public Directory. A Basic Public Directory. A Limited Public Directory. A Secured Public Directory. Adding Guest Access. Guest Account. Sharing CD-ROMs and Removable Devices. A CD-ROM Share. A Removable Device Share. Sharing a Microsoft Access Database. Application Sharing.

4. The Samba Print Server.

How Samba Print Sharing Works. Set Spool Permissions. Configuring Printer Sharing. Webmin's Printer Administration Tool Settings. Step 1: Name the Printer Share. Step 2: Choose a Connection. Step 3: Create the Spool Directory. Configuring Samba for Printer Support. Customizing Individual Printers. Accessing Samba Print Shares from Windows. Installing Printers Using the Add Printer Wizard. Installing Printers from the Network Neighborhood/My Network Places. Automatic Printer Driver Installation. Configure Samba for Automatic Printer Services. Add a Printer Administrator. Create a Printers Directory. Set Permissions. Create a Print$ Share. Install Printers and Drivers. Install the Printer. Upload the Drivers. Configure the Printers.

5. Advanced Topics.

Using Samba as a Logon Server. Configure Samba for Network Logon Support. Add a Netlogon Share. Configure a WINS Server. The lmhosts Alternative. Add Profile Support. Add System Policies. Add Logon Scripts. Advanced Logon Scripts. Using Samba Over SSL. Install OpenSSL. Compile Samba for SSL Support. Set Up the Proxy Server. Create a Certificate for the Samba Server. Become a Certificate Authority. Create a Server Certificate. Configure Samba's SSL Options. Start the SSL Proxy Server. Configure the Windows Machine. Samba Virtual Servers. Internationalization. The Client Code Page Option. The Code Page Directory Option. The Character Set option. The Coding System Option. The Valid Chars Option. The Samba Time Server. Set Up the Samba Server As a Time Server. Set the Time on Windows Clients. The Samba Fax Server. Select the Right Modem. Set Up the Fax Server Software. Set Up a Fax Printer in Samba. Set Up the Windows Clients. Samba, Windows, and Cross-Subnet Browsing.

6. Configuring Windows 9x/Me/NT/2000.

NetBIOS and TCP/IP Networking. Different Naming Services: WINS and DNS. LMHOSTS and HOSTS. Setting Up Windows 9x/Me. Enable Multiuser Profiles. Configure TCP/IP Networking. IP Address and DHCP. WINS Configuration and LMHOSTS. Gateway and DNS Settings. Configure the Client for Microsoft Windows. Choose Machine and Workgroup Names. Choose Security and Access Control Settings. User-Level Security. Share-Level Security. Check the Connection. Ping. Setting Up Windows NT. Configure TCP/IP networking. Assign the NetBIOS name. Check the CIFS client. Install and Set Up TCP/IP. Set the IP Address. Check the Connection. Setting Up Windows 2000. Configure TCP/IP Networking. Assign the NetBIOS Name. Configure the CIFS Client and TCP/IP. WINS and NetBIOS Compatibility. Check the Connection. Browsing, Accessing, and Mapping. Accessing Samba File Shares. Mapping File Shares.

7. Troubleshooting.

Problems Connecting to a New Server. Check Networking. Check the Samba Configuration. A General Guide for Troubleshooting. Four Quick Things to Check. Check the Network Wiring. Restart the Workstation. Check the Windows Client Configuration. Check the Logs. Problems With the Network Connection. Is the Network Configured Properly? Can You Reach Other Computers on the Network? Are the WINS and DNS Name Services Working? Windows Reports a Problem. Why Isn't the Samba Server in the Network Neighborhood/Computers Near Me? You Haven't Waited Long Enough. No Shares are Available. The Workstation and the Samba Server are in Different Workgroups. The WINS Server is Not Reachable. There is No Guest Account on the Samba Server. Samba Isn't Running. The Workstation or the Samba Server Isn't Connected to the Network. There is No Master Browser on Your Network. More Than One Computer is Set to be the Master Browser. The Samba Server is on a Different Subnet. The Samba Server Blocks Browsing and Says “Invalid Password” or “Not Authorized”. There is More than One Domain Controller on the Network. Why Are There Problems Accessing Files or Folders on the Samba Server? The Drive Letter Has Disappeared. The Share Name Was Not Found. The Network Path Was Not Found. You Must Supply a Password to Make This Connection. The Password is Invalid. The Network is Busy. Access is Denied. Connection Refused. Session Request Failed. Why Are There Logon Problems? The Logon Script Does Not Run. No Domain Server is Available to Validate Your Password. The Password You Supplied Was Incorrect. Samba-Related Problems. Samba is not running. The Samba Services Did Not Start. Samba Has Not Been Configured. What Do the Logs Say? SWAT Can't Be Opened. Printer Problems.

8. Linux System Administration Essentials.

Understanding Linux Distributions. Xwindows and Terminals. KDE and GNOM. Reasons Not to Use Xwindows. Using Webmin. Managing Bootup Options. Managing Users and Groups. Samba Configuration. Printer Administration. Software Management. Other Webmin Modules. Using the Nongraphical Terminal. The File System. Text Editors. Basic Functions on a Nongraphical Terminal. Copying Files. Security Tips. Handling Emergencies.

9. Optimizing Performance.

Performance Issues. Monitoring Performance. Maximizing Your Hardware. Network Infrastructure. ATA, SCSI, and RAID. ATA Disk Drives. SCSI Disk Drives. RAID Disk Drive Controllers. Filesystem. Memory Requirements. CPUs and SMP. Optimizing the Linux Server. Fine-Tuning the Samba Configuration. Fine-Tuning Logging Options. Fine-Tuning Protocol Options. Fine-Tuning Tuning Options. Fine-Tuning Filename Handling. Fine-Tuning Locking Options. Oplocks. Level 2 Oplocks. Strict Locking. Write Cache Size. Fine-Tuning Miscellaneous Options. Wide Links.

10. Replacing Windows with Samba.

Replacing a Windows File Server. Step 1: Get the User, Group, File, and Printer Sharing Information. Step 2: Create User and Group Accounts on the Samba Server. Adding Users With the Webmin Utility. Adding Users Without the Webmin Utility. Step 3: Configure the Samba Server. Adding Group Directories Without Webmin. Configuring Shares on Samba. Step 4: Test the Samba Server. Step 5: Move Files to the Samba Server. Setting Up a Samba Domain Controller. Configure Samba. Set Up Netlogon. Create Machine Accounts.

Appendix A: Samba Command and Configuration Option Reference.

The Samba Suite. Daemons. Smbd. Nmbd. Winbindd. Client Tools. Diagnostic Utilities. Configuration Options. Globals. Base Options. Security Options. Logging Options. Protocol Options. Tuning Options. Printing Options. Filename Handling. Domain Options. Logon Options. Browse Options. WINS Options. Locking Options. SSL Options. Miscellaneous Options. VFS Options. Winbind Options. Shares. Base Options. Security Options. Logging Options. Tuning Options. Filename Handling. Browse Options. Locking Options. Miscellaneous Options. VFS Options. Printers. Base Options. Security Options. Logging Options. Tuning Options. Printing Options. Browse Options. Miscellaneous Options.

Appendix B: Finding Help.

Samba's Complete Documentation. Help on the Web. Samba Help. The Samba Headquarters. Samba Lists. Samba Newsgroup. Free Software Foundation. Webmin. Red Hat Linux. Caldera OpenLinux. Debian GNU/Linux. Other Linux Sites. Commercial Support. Publications.

Appendix C: Linux Backup Procedures.

What to Back Up. Backing Up from a Windows System. Add Backup Operators to a Share. Create Separate Backup Shares. A Linux-Windows Solution. Backing Up from a Linux System. Snapshot Partitions. Back Up to Tape With Tar. Creating a Tape Backup. Restoring from a Tape Backup.

Appendix D: The GNU General Public License.

Text of the License. End of Terms and Conditions. Applying These Terms to Your New Programs.




Samba is inherently dynamic. Like all successful open source software, it is in a constant state of change. Developers never stop working on the software, fixing problems or improving the code, and adding new features. Any official release of the program is merely a stage of the constantly developing program. In fact, during the course of development of Samba, the Samba team will regularly release "snapshots" of the code under development for testing.

This book, too, might be seen as a snapshot of the currently available version of Samba, though it differs in many ways from a code snapshot. A big part of Samba's development involves fixing problems, no matter how small or obscure. Many hours are also spent in making Samba work on all of the many different platforms it supiports, the different versions of Unix as well as Linux. This work can take much more time than adding new features. The snapshot covered by this book will last much longer than a code snapshot.

Who This Book Is For

This book is designed to assist a Windows administrator who wants to get a Samba server up and running reliably with a minimum of fuss. The book describes how to do this by running Samba on a Linux server, the second most popular server platform after Windows.

The success of Linux is not just a reflection of its low price. Linux is successful because it is a remarkably stable system that gives server-class performance on inexpensive Intel-compatible systems. For anyone working with a tight budget, and that's almost every network administrator, Linux is an attractive solution.

Samba, however, is not limited to Linux. Samba can be run on almost any Unix-based system from IBM's AIX to Sun's Solaris. Hewlett-Packard even packages its own version of Samba called CIFS/9000 that is included with its HP-UX. Samba will also run on any version of BSD, such as FreeBSD, though it will not run on the new Macintosh OSX, which is based on FreeBSD.

For the most part, any reference in this book to Linux can also be read as a reference to Unix in general. However, the specifics may vary. If you are not using Linux, make sure to check for the correct procedures and command syntax for the version of Unix you are using.

Linux itself has some variations between its different distributions. Throughout the book, Red Hat Linux is used for the examples. Two other major distributions are Caldera OpenLinux and Debian GNU/Linux. In most cases, the information for these two distributions is included as well.

Any of the Linux distributions will work with Samba. Red Hat Linux is the most popular distribution. Caldera OpenLinux has focused on building a wide distribution primarily on business systems. Debian GNU/Linux is a completely noncommercial distribution and, like Samba and the Linux kernel, is maintained by volunteers.

The Samba Headquarters at www.samba.org is run on a Debian GNU/Linux server that is provided by VA Linux Systems (www.valinux.com) on the Sourceforge open source developers network (www.sourceforge.net).

For more detailed information on the three major Linux distributions and complete documentation for each one, go to the following Web sites:

Red Hat Linux www.redhat.com
Caldera OpenLinux www.caldera.com
Debian GNU/Linux www.debian.org

Organization of This Book

Chapter 1: Samba and Windows

This chapter introduces Samba, for those who are new to the program, and gives some background to its development, its place in history. The chapter compares Samba with Windows NT/2000. It also details what Samba can and cannot do; this section should be read by anyone thinking about adding a Samba server to a Windows network. Finally, the chapter introduces Linux terms and concepts for Windows users.

Chapter 2: Installing and Configuring Samba

Samba installation might look difficult to someone who knows only Windows because there are so many possible steps and options. This chapter shows how the standard installation option is as easy as installing an application on a Windows system. It also explains the more complicated possibilities for those who want a totally customized server. This option involves compiling Samba from the source code. Compiling software is part of working with open source software like Samba. The basics of compiling—only the basics are needed to create a customized version of Samba—are easy to learn even without expertise in C or any other computer language.

Chapter 3: The Samba File Server

This chapter steps through the process for configuring file services on a Samba server. Samba works with a configuration file that can be simple or complex, depending on the need. There is nothing equivalent to the configuration file on a Windows server. However, the process offers great flexibility and has the advantage that the configuration of Samba can be handled remotely, that is, from another computer on the network, using Webmin and SWAT, Web-based tools for remote Samba system administration. Changes and updates can be easily made without having to directly sit at the server and without rebooting the system. For the most part, Windows servers cannot be configured and updated remotely, or without rebooting when making updates.

Chapter 4: The Samba Print Server

The Samba print server is almost as popular as the Samba file server. Cisco Systems, for example, has 300 print servers running Samba and Linux, handling more than 6,000 printers worldwide. Cisco replaced a combination of Windows NT and Sun servers handling printer sharing with Intel-based PCs and found that the Samba-Linux solution was not only more stable but also more flexible. Setting up a print server is no more difficult than setting up a file server.

Chapter 5: Advanced Topics

This chapter takes up advanced networking issues, including using Samba as a logon sever, using Samba as an application server, setting up virtual file servers, and using SSL for secure file transfers on a wide area Samba network. This chapter also covers Samba and browsing across multiple subnets, as well as WINS Service.

Chapter 6: Configuring Windows 9x/Me/NT/2000

A chapter on setting up Windows computers to connect to Samba servers may seem unnecessary in a book for Windows administrators. After all, the steps are exactly the same for connecting to a Windows NT/2000 server. However, it's a good idea to go over everything, especially for those who administer a Windows network as part of several other responsibilities on the job. Although the next chapter is about troubleshooting, the steps outlined in this chapter can help to find and fix problems on a Samba network.

Chapter 7: Troubleshooting

Samba servers won't give you a General Protection Fault blue screen. That doesn't mean, however, that Samba is trouble-free. This chapter includes general procedures for troubleshooting Samba problems, along with common solutions for specific Windows error messages.

Chapter 8: Linux System Administration Essentials

Most Samba servers are running on Linux. This chapter is a short course on Linux system administration, including starting up, shutting down, user and group management, and other tasks involved in administrating a server. The chapter shows how Linux system administration can be handled using the Webmin browser-based software package for Linux system administrators. The chapter also introduces the Linux file system and the tools that Linux system administrators use to maintain it.

Chapter 9: Optimizing Performance

For administrators who want to eke out the best possible results, this chapter discusses advanced techniques for optimizing the performance of a Samba server.

Chapter 10: Replacing Windows with Samba

Samba lives very happily as one part of a bigger Windows network. In fact, it performs so well that many system administrators decide to convert their entire networks to Samba servers. This chapter covers some of the issues involved and some steps an administrator should take in order to convert to an all-Samba environment. Included in this chapter is the procedure for setting up Samba as a domain controller.

Appendix A: Samba Command and Configuration Option Reference

This appendix is a listing of the Samba applications and the configuration options.

Appendix B: Finding Help

This appendix includes information on how you can find help with Samba as well as Linux.

Appendix C: Linux Backup Procedures

Although files on a Samba server can be backed up along with your regular Windows server backups, the Linux system should also be backed up. This appendix describes what needs to be backed up on a Linux server.

Appendix D: The GNU General Public License

The GNU General Public License covers both Samba and the Linux operating system.


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