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Samba 3 By Example

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the step-by-step dept.

Windows 195

ALecs writes "When I first discovered Samba, I was in heaven! I could serve my Linux filesystems to my Windows 95 desktop and life was good. Between then and now, though, Samba has gotten a lot more capabilities, and I've been struggling to keep up with the cryptic voodoo that is Windows networking. While 'The Official Samba-3 HOWTO and Resource Guide' has been a great resource, Samba seems to just be once of those packages that you just need to see in action to understand. Hearing my cries, and those of countless others, John H. Terpstra has bestowed upon the Samba community the tome of ancient knowledge sought by all: Samba 3 By Example: Practical Exercises to Successful Deployment ." Read on for the rest of Malone's review.

Samba 3 By Example begins on a very friendly note by explaining how to get the most out of it any what you'll need to complete the exercises in the rest of the book. The beginning also includes a Windows networking primer, complete with packet captures (using the popular tool 'ethereal') showing how network browsing really works, under the hood.

This book follows the evolution of a fictitious company, "Abmas", through an impossible growth from a 9-person office to a 2000-person network with multiple sites around the world. You assume the role of the IT guy: charged with growing the company's network infrastructure, planning for change and, above all, keeping the users happy.

Some of the major challenges tackled in this book are:

  • Using Samba-3 as an NT-4 style PDC
  • Using Samba-3 as an domain member server
  • Using the various authentication backends as alternatives to the traditional 'smbpasswd' backend
  • Using LDAP to implement a Samba-3 PDC with backup domain controllers
  • Authentication using winbindd
  • Migrating from NT-4 to Samba-3 for a PDC
  • Using kerberos to integrate Samba-3 into a Microsoft Active Directory domain (as a domain member server)

I am extremely impressed by Terpstra's book. It addresses the complete spectrum of Samba deployments, from the 10-person office to the 2000-seat, multi-site enterprise while explaining not just what to do, but how to do it and, most importantly, why. The examples are practical and you can really imagine some poor sap^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H unfortunate systems administrator finding him/herself in these very positions. This book says that these scenarios are hypothetical aggregations of real-world situations, but could swear I've worked for this company before.

One of the nicest things about this book is that each situation is followed by a Q&A section - almost like a textbook - that addresses both the important points of the exercise, as well as some of the trivial details that were left out for the sake of brevity. Don't be tempted to skip them thinking that it's just a rehash.

It's worth noting that this book is not a replacement for TOSHARG and defers to it for technical details in multiple cases. These two books should be sidearms for any IT administrator that has to deal with Windows clients on a daily basis.

I'm also very impressed with Terpstra's candor about Samba's features, weaknesses and road map. Nowhere in this book is Windows put down as inferior or is Samba touted as the "be-all, end-all" of Desktop and client management solutions. The relative flexibility of Active Directory and Samba is discussed only briefly and the choice to use Samba over Windows is ultimately left to the reader. Since you've gone to the trouble of purchasing this book, Terpstra assumes you've already made up your mind and require no further convincing.

Continuing to be mindful of office politics, Terpstra devotes a section in each chapter to the political implications of replacing Windows with an open source product, and an entire chapter to the issues inherent in bringing Samba into a traditionally Windows-based shop. Even though he refers to this chapter as a "shameless self-promotion of Samba-3", I found it to be an even-handed discussion of the issues you will most likely encounter from anti-Unix advocates and IT managers who have bought into the anti-Linux FUD. These are real issues that Systems Administrators need to know how to deal with effectively but too many of us simply dismiss because we feel they are uninformed.

In addition to examples of Samba configuration, examples are provided to integrate Samba with other useful servers such as the squid web proxy, OpenLDAP, bind and dhcpd. The configuration files for Samba as well as these additional pieces of software are also conveniently located on the included CD-ROM, along with Samba 3.0.2 packages for Red Hat Fedora Core 1 and SuSE Linux (Enterprise server 8 for x86 and s390 and SuSE Linux 9).

I think my biggest complaint with this book is that the "case study"-like format of this book tends to lump a large number of new features into a single example. This can make it hard to isolate the particular feature that you're interested in.

For instance, the example that illustrates automatic printer driver downloads to Windows clients is lumped into a chapter that is primarily concerned with using LDAP to implement a BDC. Automatic driver installation is a great feature that many sites far too small to consider implementing LDAP would likely be interested in.

In all, though, I'm extremely pleased with Samba 3 by Example - perhaps even more than TOSHARG. In it, you'll find plenty of tips, working examples and honest admissions of bugs (and their workarounds) that will keep you from losing your sanity. You could almost call this book a 300 page Samba and Windows networking consultant with over 8 years of experience. Terpstra has been incredibly kind to the Samba community by imparting so much wisdom to us all in this book.


Josh Malone has been a FreeBSD and Windows system administrator for three and a half years working in development shops and hosting companies, and currently works as a Linux engineer for an embedded systems company. You can purchase Samba 3 By Example from bn.com. Slashdot welcomes readers' book reviews -- to see your own review here, read the book review guidelines, then visit the submission page

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195 comments

first post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931468)

that's two today! wooo!

Support our white troops (-1, Troll)

Klerck (213193) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931475)

Do it

rock (0, Offtopic)

unbiasedbystander (660703) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931478)

rock

scissors (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932086)

scissors

comment (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931488)

1 GB is a lot of information, and it has to cost a decent chunk of money to allocate that much storage for every user, and to pay for bandwidth for 30MB attachments, and for the rack space and electricity. How are web portals like google making back the cost of 1GB email?

Wow (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931514)

First post on the wrong story.

Re:comment (1)

Shazzman (656506) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931535)

They don't really need 1 GB of storage space for each user, because 90% of the users won't use all of their allocated storage space. They just need enough to cover everyone.

I agree with everything you said (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931504)

But you misspelled 'hell.'

Hmmm (1)

Can it run Linux (664464) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931509)

Is there some way we can blame this on Micro$oft?

Samba (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931520)

Samba...what's it all about?

Is it good, or is it whack?

Samba by example? (4, Funny)

Deraj DeZine (726641) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931527)

Cool, I've always wanted to learn how to samba [google.com] .

Re:Samba by example? (3, Funny)

74nova (737399) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931952)

holy crap, after seeing those picture, me too!

Re:Samba by example? (3)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932357)

As someone who has been invoved in latin dance in various forms (salsa, meringue, cha-cha, argentine tango, samba, rhumba, bolero etc) over the last few years I can attest to the fact that learning to dance is fun thing to do and that you can meet lots of cute and friendly people of the opposite sex. Which is how I met my current gf.

Whats even better is that in order to dance these dances well, you NEED to hold your partner in a close embrace. And you can't complain about that.

Another plus is that social latin dancing is done in places like public bars, but the atmosphere of the dance set is not 'meat market'. Thus it gives you a solid framework to get out in public that is not confrontationist. In my job where I do a bit of world travel, I always try and find the local dance places for some non work social life, and as a result have had some really fun times away from home.

On a final note, Samba is a Brazilian dance, and I can attest that all the Brazilians I have met have been fun loving people, and that the country is a great one to go and visit :-)

cryptic voodoo (-1, Offtopic)

abscondment (672321) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931541)

Does the book come with a complementary Bill Gates Voodoo Doll? If so, sign me up.

Question: (0, Flamebait)

cablepokerface (718716) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931552)

What is better about Samba then Windows Networking?

Re:Question: (4, Informative)

jmays (450770) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931581)

It's a free, robust, easy to admin file server and DC with impeccable reliability.

Re:Question: (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931655)

Samba is a really useful product.

FACT 1. Windows is the better desktop.
FACT 2. Linux is the better server.

Samba makes the two work together.

Re:Question: (0, Troll)

Deraj DeZine (726641) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931807)

FACT 3. OS X is the best desktop
FACT 4. Linux is for hippies
FACT 5. SCO pwns Linux
FACT 7. This post will be modded as a troll

Re:Question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931981)

FACT 6. PROFIT???

Re:Question: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932079)

The mods are so predictable, it's funny... or sad.

Re:Question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931621)

What is better about Samba then Windows Networking?

It is just a matter of preference.

I, for one, prefer to do Latin dance before Windows newtorking. But some like to do it after.

Re:Question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931835)

I have been studying dance for a few years now, and I have never heard of newtorking. Is is a ballroom style?

Re:Question: (0, Offtopic)

mangu (126918) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931939)

"windows networking" is what you do when, after dancing, you get together with some important people by the window side, in order to impress them with your professional capabilities.

Re:Question: (3, Informative)

edk1 (58496) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931629)

From what I recall, the file sharing benchmarks have proven to be faster, and best of all, no license fees for Windows Server. Also, the server itself will be immune to Windows viruses.

adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (5, Interesting)

RogL (608926) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931701)

I have limited Samba experience, but have found that my 5-box home network became much more stable after allowing Samba to become a browse master. We had occasional issues with printers dropping offline, files copyable one direction but not another, odd hangs where the only solution was a power-off reset, bringing boxes up in sequence.

Once I installed Samba on my main OpenBSD server, things quieted down. Took a few weeks before I realized: no Windows "hiccups" had happened! It's stayed that way for months now. I may have gotten the same effect by setting up a Windows PDC, but I don't have a "dedicated" box new enough to be useful for that. At this point, even if I don't need the shares, I'll leave it running just to stabilize the wife's WinME box!

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (1)

lambent (234167) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931813)

We had the same experiences at the office. After I surreptitiously inserted a samba 3 master into the network, lag times dropped, copy permissions started behaving as expected, and things in general just chilled out.

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931984)

WinME (95,98,XP Home) cant join a domain, so leaving it running as a PDC with no shares would be pretty pointless.

For home use, I like samba just to turn what would otherwise be junk into fileservers. I have a samba PDC machine that also hosts a MSDFS root share. Basically its a ghetto SAN, with everything online easily browsable from one mapped drive.

The kids can find the games and cartoons, the wife can find her music and pictures, applications are all stored.

Roaming profiles and remote home directories make a format and reinstall of a machine I just cant be bothered to troubleshoot and fix virtually painless.

I've been fighting an uphill battle trying to get both samba and linux to authenticate against an ldap server. In typical linux fashion, I dont know which piece of the puzzle is missing or broken (PAM and libs, openldap, openssl, samba).

I also threw in the towel trying to get it to share my deskjet properly. It'll print, but the margins are always screwed up, ie; the top 0.5" is always trimmed on paper. And again, there's too much to troubleshoot. The formatting problem could be at the windows client, samba, cups, ghostscript, etc, etc.. There are a million filters between the users keyboard and LPT1 on my samba box.

Anyways, WinME cant join domains stupid. It cant even send out an encrypted password, so don't be having ME/9x boxes on real (important businessy) windows domains.

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932008)

Actually, that's mostly not true. Windows 95 and 98 can join domains, and so can ME. It's Windows XP Home that doesn't have the domain logon feature.

Businesses have been using Win95/98 systems on domains (Windows NT) and Netware networks for years. Windows ME can logon to and utilize an NT domain but there is no official Netware client for ME...not that I've heard of anyone using WinME with a Netware server.

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932265)

Win9x machines don't really join domains -- they fake it with a workgroup of the same name and a similar logon window.

Try this: create a Win98 machine with netbios name "FOO". Turn it off. Create another 9x machine called "FOO". This will work, but it wouldn't with NT.

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (3, Insightful)

mtnharo (523610) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932321)

He wasn't really talking about using domains though. He mentioned setting up Samba as a "Master Browser." On a domainless network, one of the machines becomes the "master browser," which all of the other machines look to for info on who is on the network.

It sounds like a good idea, but in practice, if the master browser changes or is rebooted, the other machines in the workgroup won't be able to find network resources unless they are restarted too. This is usually the source of most network issues with Windows on home networks. By setting up a samba machine that is always and never gives up "master browser" status, the table of which machines are on the network remains available.

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932386)

You hardly need a "master browser" on a 5 machine home network -- just Start+Run \\MachineName and NBT will broadcast and find it much more quickly than using the neighborhood.

Also, 9x is buggy wrt browser elections, so the Browse Master should be turned off. With only NT boxes participating, the elections shoudl work and your browse lists will be fine.

Re:adds stability to Win9x/ME workgroups (4, Informative)

cloudmaster (10662) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932328)

WinME can authenticate against a domain, just as every (networkable) version of windows is able to. That login is then used when connecting to any network shares. Anyway, when the poster said "Domain Master" he probably meant "Browse Master", since what was the problems being caused were probably a result of browser elections, etc, and not domain logon issues.

Every version of windows after Win 95 SP1 uses encrypted passwords by default. That includes WinME. You have to apply a registry change (documented in the docs/Registry/ directory of your samba source distro) to make them use clear text passwords.

Linux authenticating against LDAP isn't very hard - most of the newer distros just require a couple button presses to set that up, and you should check out PADL's site (padl.com, IIRC) for scripts to migrate your /etc files to LDAP. Or check out my howto, which is generally near the top of a google search for "linux ldap authentication" or similar. Samba-to-LDAP is also easy, if you follow the step-by-step readme's that are all over the place (including examples/LDAP/ in the samba source distro).

That 485 page PDF document bundled with the current Samba distro is really a useful read.

BTW, calling people stupid doesn't help much, esp when you're wrong. ;)

samba rocks (4, Insightful)

jacquesm (154384) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931555)

Samba is probably one of the largest driving forces enabling people to migrate away from windows servers. It's a cornerstone of lots of offices that I have visited.

Re:samba rocks - until you hit oplocks! (4, Interesting)

FyRE666 (263011) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932217)

Well, it does until you start using a lot of Excel spreadsheets which link to other spreadsheets on a Samba share at least. Then you start to see serious locking problems.

Believe me, I've been banging my head against this for a couple of weeks now (I can't reproduce the problem, but other people on the network can and do, daily). Everyone seems to have their own idea about the correct combination of oplocks, level 2 oplocks, veto oplocks, deadtime etc to use; but nothing seems 100% foolproof. This is the reason we're probably going to be switching away from Samba to Win2k3. I don't want this, but as the only Linux guy, it's hard to fight the tide when you're having to clear down the locks and force people to close and re-open files almost daily as they're lock out of their own files... ;-(

Re:samba rocks - until you hit oplocks! (3, Interesting)

Cheeze (12756) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932362)

i'm not sure of your exact problems, but the same thing happens in the win2k environment. sometimes, the application will give the error that the file is open already, buy the user that is trying to open it. The application does not even try to open it read-only. I've had to log into the file server and boot the open file. In that case, the program was MS Excel from office 2k. At least with a linux file server, you should be able to open the file read only. Most of the time, the application can just open it with no locking.

Re:samba rocks - until you hit oplocks! (1)

fldvm (466714) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932476)

We just turned oplocks off on windows or samba. We take a preformance hit but the crappy 3rd party program we use won't work with oplocks on.

Re:samba rocks - until you hit oplocks! (4, Informative)

Mish (50810) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932515)

The following settings resolved that issue for me:
oplocks = no
level 2 oplocks = true
fake oplocks = yes
Of course you'll want to RTFM on those commands first so you know what you're letting yourself in for. :)

Re:samba rocks - until you hit oplocks! (3, Informative)

FyRE666 (263011) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932564)

fake oplocks = yes

Erm, isn't that a completely insane thing to do (unless you're sharing a CD over Samba)?!!! The Windows clients will assume they have a lock on a file, and blindly write to it, even though other clients will assume the same! If you really are using this on a writable share and haven't clobbered a whole load of files, then you've been damned lucky!

Kerberos Authentication (4, Interesting)

jmulvey (233344) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931563)

So does Samba-3 support the "trade secret" PAC information that Microsoft inserted into their Kerberos tickets (to great consternation of the Kerberos community)?

Re:Kerberos Authentication (4, Informative)

ALecs (118703) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931696)

The most recent Samba-3 code now supports 'schannel' and "digital sign'n'seal" for joining an active directory domain. It cannot act as an ADS domain controller - only a member server

Re:Kerberos Authentication (4, Informative)

ALecs (118703) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931762)

I should also clarify that samba-3 can join as a Win2K member server and not just a legacy NT-4 server. The difference is in how you join the samba server to the domain.

Use 'net ads join' to join as a Win2K member. If you use the older 'net rpc join' command, you're just doing NT-4 domain membership. Chapter 9 in the book covers Active Directory interoperation. The interoperability code is in Samba, not Kerberos.

Re:Kerberos Authentication (3, Informative)

lkaos (187507) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931748)

Samba can decode the PAC. I don't believe it actually using the information yet.

This is because before using the information, you have to verify the signatures (to ensure the data hasn't been forged). Making use of the information in the PAC is on the TODO list though as it will result in a nice performance increase in some areas.

And the PAC certainly doesn't violate any of the kerberos standards. Placing implementation specific information in the authorization data is what it's there for.

Re:Kerberos Authentication (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932121)

And the PAC certainly doesn't violate any of the kerberos standards. Placing implementation specific information in the authorization data is what it's there for.

Very true, but I think the issue many people have is with Microsoft using this field and then not telling anyone how to interpret it (well, at first anyway).

Sixth Post! (-1, Offtopic)

Jerk City Troll (661616) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931570)

Sixth Post!

excellent! i have been looking for this (4, Interesting)

iwein (561027) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931605)

after my first experience with samba (opposed to windows 2k server) i was highly enthousiastic but being one of the lesser linux geeks around i had some difficulty setting it up.

overall my impression is that in total i suppose you would need less time to set up and maintain a nice samba server than a w2k server, even if it is your first time installing linux.

with the help of this book it will become even simpler....

yay.

Re:excellent! i have been looking for this (5, Funny)

Smallpond (221300) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931653)

I don't know what you're talking about. smb.conf is almost as easy as sendmail.cf. It has helpful comments like:

; 7: Look at the "hosts allow" option, unless you want everyone on the internet
; to be able to access your files.

Well, I looked at it and they could still access my files.

LOL - mod up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931685)

Not quite grammatical comment (in smb.cnf) lead to quite a good joke.

Re:excellent! i have been looking for this (1)

psycho (84421) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932487)

I don't see what's wrong here:

1) A: You look at the "hosts allow" option.
2) B: You want everyone on the internet to be able to access your files.

What the comment says is: A unless B. In other words, If B then not A. (If you want everyone on the internet to be able to access your files, then don't look at the "hosts allow" option.

It would be wrong only if they said: B unless A.

Re:excellent! i have been looking for this (1, Troll)

gfhilton (471959) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931735)

overall my impression is that in total i suppose you would need less time to set up and maintain a nice samba server than a w2k server, even if it is your first time installing linux.


Haha. Right. The setting up part will make you pull out your hair in consernation. One of the downfalls of Samba and Linux in general is that, while it is customizeable and extendable in the extreme, this customization and extension is not down in a very elegant or universal way and so it is very difficult to set up and make work correctly. Hence the plethora of Linux books that spend chapters discussing the most simple tasks, such as making a sound card work (see previous slashdoted article on Linux and soundcards).

Re:excellent! i have been looking for this (2, Informative)

mangu (126918) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932040)

it is very difficult to set up and make work correctly


I recently upgraded two of my MS-Windows machines at home, put a GeForce fx5200 video card in my desktop and got a new HP/Compaq notebook with XP pre-installed. The main reason I still keep M$ machines is for games, and Need For Speed - Porsche Unleashed happens to be one of my favorites. It took me several weeks to get it working in the notebook, and it still doesn't work on the desktop.


Compared to this, configuring Linux machines is easy. Usually you just need to look in the log files for error messages and paste the message text in a Google search to get the info you need to get it working.

Re:excellent! i have been looking for this (3, Insightful)

Lussarn (105276) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932285)

It's like they say. Windows is easy until something breaks. Then you are screwed.

Re:excellent! i have been looking for this (4, Informative)

agrippa_cash (590103) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932062)

I have been trying for MONTHS (on and off) to get SAMBA 3 working with LDAP. I got 2.2 working OK, so I'm not a complete idot. Still this book may be a good investment. For those who are interested the University of Navarra has a 3.0 HOWto and there is a 2.2 Howto (that I used sucessfully) at homex.subnet.at/~max/ldap.

Voodoo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931614)

"and I've been struggling to keep up with the cryptic voodoo that is Windows networking"

It isn't like Samba is any less voodoo-ishly cryptic, you know.

Mistitled? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931648)

Samba By Example? Don't they mean Samba By a Huge Nerd?

cool (1)

Vlion (653369) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931664)

I'll have to read it sometime- I could really use samba.

almost 40% at bookpool.com (4, Informative)

blkwolf (18520) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931675)

bookpool.com [bookpool.com]

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (2, Funny)

gadders (73754) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931721)

And with your referral code in the URL too!

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931796)

out-of-stock

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (1)

blkwolf (18520) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931837)

What referal code?
The url was generated by going directly to bookpool and then searching for the title, so if your trying to infere I have any benefit from anyone using the link, then your an idiot.

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931945)

What referal code? The url was generated by going directly to bookpool and then searching for the title, so if your trying to infere I have any benefit from anyone using the link, then your an idiot.

Does Bookpool sell spelling-and-grammar guides?

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932090)

>your an idiot.

your: possesive, as in "is this my book or yours?"

you're: contraction of you are, as in "You're an idiot".

might wanna get that right before calling someone else an idiot.

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (1)

MrPink2U (633607) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932445)

Ahh, the old, "if my first personal attack doesn't stick, attack the grammar" trick. Admit you were wrong for attacking the link to bookpool.com and move along.

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (3, Insightful)

blackmonday (607916) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931995)

Yes I know you were being funny: That's not a refferal ID, but even if it was, who cares? it wouldn't cost you any more money to buy it, and he gets some cash for spreading the word around. I don't see the angst against them on Slashdot.

Re:almost 40% at bookpool.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932092)

I think the majority of the angst comes from the fact that, with the referral incentive, people are more likely to spam the message boards. I know that I've personally seen book review threads (for months) where the first 20 posts were people trying to claim the referral fees.

No referral fees = less chance of having to wade through tens of "get this book for $0.01 cheaper at Amazon" messages.

"By Example" books a great idea (4, Interesting)

proxima (165692) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931678)

Obviously teaching things by example is not new, but far too many computer books on too many subjects (especially programming) don't use enough examples to illustrate their points. Some just use poor examples.

Samba is one of those setups where the total amount of functionality is far more than many users need, so a collection of well-designed examples will greatly speed one's implementation (and reduce common security problems). Fortunately the default config file has improved in Samba to the point where it's not too difficult to setup basic printer/filesystem sharing.

These "cookbook" style books obviously can't replace a reference, but they often are more useful as a starting point. I've spent over five years on unix systems now, but I still groan at the lack of examples in the man pages of more obscure command line software. Google often comes through, provided I can think of a good phrase that describes what I'm trying to do ("search and replace with perl command line" - perl -pi -e 's/searchterm/replaceterm/g' [filenames], btw).

Re:"By Example" books a great idea (1)

wonderman (69091) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932071)

If your at the command line, why not just type

sed 's/searchterm/replaceterm/g' filename

and get the work down without perl having to be there?

Re:"By Example" books a great idea (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932083)

the total amount of functionality is far more than many users need


Well, isn't that the curse of the modern technology-plus-marketing society where we live? Any product today, be it software or hardware, comes with a lot more functionality than we really need.

Great! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931692)

This is great. I just started migrating from windowsXP to Fedora Core 1 and have been trying to setup a Samba server for a week. I'm using the O'Reilly manual, but there are significant gaps in the setup descriptions. I remember thinking "I wish there was a case by case explanation of setups for this damn program" Well, I guess I'll be buying this today!

little known fact (3, Insightful)

mirko (198274) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931694)

Samba 3 is used by Panther (OSX3) since the beginning.

Re:little known fact (4, Informative)

amunter (313014) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931803)

Yes, and at the recent FOSE expo in DC the Apple guy that was standing under the sign in the Apple booth that said "LDAP and Kerberos" showed me how easy it was to use.

It uses all the normal Apple GUI type controls which basically take care of all of the configuration changes to smb.conf and krb5.conf. Basically a slick "apple looking" configuration file editor. I thought SWAT made samba configuration pretty easy, but this Apple stuff is great. Really cool stuff.

a bit ot: C++ GUI Programming with Qt 3 (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931743)

Anyone know when this will be released in PDF? I've thought about buying it blind, but not only would I really like to work with it a bit first, the places I typically shop from lists it as out of stock to boot (and has for some time. Not a big seller? I dunno).

(PS. Links to places which list the book as stocked will be totally unhelpful since you have no idea of where in the world I am or what currency/countries I prefer to deal with)

Re:a bit ot: C++ GUI Programming with Qt 3 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931804)

(-1, Asking for Help and Then Proceeding to be an Asshole by Refusing it Unless it is in Some Magical Preferred Format)

Samba Cryptic? (4, Interesting)

timeOday (582209) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931781)

I have found Samba very workable and not too hard to set up. At first I only thought of Samba as a hack to interoperate with Windows and assumed NFS was better. But over a few years I've had a number of troubles with NFS, from timeouts to UID translation to large file support (on Linux - I'm sure NFS is better on Solaris!) Finally I realized that Samba is not just a scab, it works fine and is easy to set up. Now I use it even to network Linux boxes. Sure Samba's guts might be messy but it doesn't seem to hurt anything.

Re:Samba Cryptic? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8931944)

We recently switched to Samba from NT and it sped up significantly. The regular Samba fork is pretty easy to set up for file serving but my experience with setting it up as a domain controller for Win2000/XP was like sitting down on a cactus and bouncing up and down. Yes, I applied the registry hacks, and yes, I had the server set up properly, but I could not get Win2000 or XP (Professional) to login to the domain. Ended up going with Samba-TNG, which out of the box worked with 2000/XP Pro. Sure hope they incorporate some of the niftier config options into Samba-TNG, though, cause I had to give those up for proper domain control.

Overall, I like it. Unlike NT, on a Dual PIII with 768Mb of memory and Ultra160 SCSI drives, Linux with Samba is faster, more stable, more secure (I think), easier to admin, and cheaper. I could not be happier. I now plan to set up more Linux boxen for other stuff on the network (mail, routing, etc.).

Re:Samba Cryptic? (1)

Lussarn (105276) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932369)

to large file support

This is NFS version 2. Both Linux and solaris support NFS v3 but if you roll your own kernels don't forget to enable version 3.

I just used this book. My experience. (0, Informative)

AmandaHugginkiss (756492) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931786)

I just completed a three day training course based on this book. Every example just worked fine. The explanations are great but you do need the "Samba-3 Howto and Reference Guide" for detailed background information. I am happy that this book does not duplicate information. I manage a samba network and thought I knew a lot but this book has helped me to understand how much more I can learn and immediately use to make my users happier. I recommend this book to every network administrator.

AMAZON.COM review copy? (5, Informative)

hot_Karls_bad_cavern (759797) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932199)

"I just completed a three day training course based on this book. Every example just worked fine. The explanations are great but you do need the "Samba-3 Howto and Reference Guide" for detailed background information...."

That's funny, i just completed a google search for your "comment" here and gues what i found?

VERBATIM COPY [amazon.com]

Interesting.

EVEN MORE INTERESTING!!!!!! (1)

hot_Karls_bad_cavern (759797) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932249)

This comment by you [slashdot.org] ALSO is on Amazon.com HERE [amazon.com] ....under another name.

You are a liar, congrats. Get lost, son.

Re:EVEN MORE INTERESTING!!!!!! (1)

eugene ts wong (231154) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932509)

I'm glad that you pointed that out.

That reminds me of my hunch that people aren't always what they seem; here on slashdot. Sure, we get trolls, etc., but a lot of people are even more deceptive. I personally think that there are spammers & spam programmers who have difficultly getting their mail to us. Therefore, they come here to discuss their issues, knowing that many slashdotters can't resist leaving a problem unsolved.

If a spammer can't do action #1, then he'll probably post something like, "All that we have to do to stop spam is do action #1.".

Most slashdotters would then be quick to jump in & say, "Actually, all that we have to do is action #2 to get around action #1.". Thus, the problem is solved. I guess that you could say that it is a free form of consulting.

Re:AMAZON.COM review copy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932414)

nice catch!

30% off the price for UK readers (4, Informative)

Nighttime (231023) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931830)

This book is currently available through The Register's bookshop [theregister.co.uk] with 30% off to UK readers.

Tried Samba 3.0.2a... (3, Informative)

Dimensio (311070) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931844)

...went back to 2.2.8a because for some reason it wasn't handling symbolic links properly. The drive containing the network share was running out of space, so I set up additional space on another drive and made a symlink to the location (yes, I used all lowercase letters in the symlink). Trying to access the directory with the 3.0.2a server resulted in a "Not a directory" error. It works properly in 2.2.8a, though.

We're talking about Samba and Linux here... (4, Insightful)

gfhilton (471959) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931856)

I've been struggling to keep up with the cryptic voodoo that is Windows networking.


The cryptic voodoo I struggle to keep up with is Samba and Linux itself. Setting up networking, even advanced domain stuff, in Windows is very easy in comparison. Hence books like this one.

I don't mean to troll, but one of Linux's biggest problems from a usability point of view is that there is no central place where configuration information is stored (aka the "hated" registry in Windows). It's supposed to end up in /etc but many times it doesn't and instead it's all scattered around in hundreds of tiny text files with various different formats that one must search out and edit. This is one of the (many) things that make it very difficult to set up or configure anything in Linux, be it hardware or software.

I think we would all be better off if the Linux community would work on fixing usability problems and making Linux more unified instead of continually adding new features. And if that sounds like many criticisms of Microsoft you've heard, then so be it.

Re:We're talking about Samba and Linux here... (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932176)

there is no central place where configuration information is stored


Funny, I think one of Linux's biggest advantages is that there is a central place where configuration information is stored. It's, as you mentioned, /etc. To find information about your configuration is normally as simple as "find /etc -exec grep -si some_text /dev/null {} \;". OK, the syntax of the find command is anything but easy, but, once you learn it, it'll become far easier than poring through regedit.exe

Re:We're talking about Samba and Linux here... (1)

jeffy210 (214759) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932233)

"...far easier than poring through regedit.exe"

Eh? I'll call you on this one. How hard is it to open regedit and hit F3 to search for something? Also the registry is pretty logically layed out. HKLM for machine wide configurations, HKCU for per person settings. It's pretty straight forward once you learn it.

Re:We're talking about Samba and Linux here... (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932486)

How hard is it to open regedit and hit F3 to search for something?


You answer your own question when you say that "...the registry is pretty logically layed out. HKLM for machine wide configurations, HKCU for per person settings.". Excuse me, but I fail to see the logic in it. How does "HKLM" relate logically to "machine wide configurations"? At least in Linux configuration is normally done by text files, and the text has some connection to the action one wants to perform. Want to configure smb? Check smb.conf. And, if you look into the smb.conf files that come with almost all Linux distributions, you'll see there are plenty of commented examples in that file.

Re:We're talking about Samba and Linux here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932177)

Setting up networking, even advanced domain stuff, in Windows is very easy in comparison.

From someone who's never done advanced networking in a large windows network with many different Windows versions?

Heck, I tried to figure out how to connect my Win2K box to a friend running a standard VLAN (fixed password) on WinXP, a project which sent me into the policy editor and lot's and lot's of weird entry-fields and boxes to be entered in the correct order and then associated with each other in some obscure undocumented way.

Re:We're talking about Samba and Linux here... (4, Insightful)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932259)

It's supposed to end up in /etc but many times it doesn't and instead it's all scattered around in hundreds of tiny text files with various different formats that one must search out and edit.


You mean like the 229 .ini files that are on my Windows 2000 machine, in various places in 'Program Files', 'WINNT', 'WINNT\System32', etc.etc?

Seriously...I don't know what Linux distro you're using......I've heard this comment before, and out of the few dozen I've tried, nothing ever stored configuration information in more than two places:

1) /etc and, for some programs with lots of config files, subdirectories of /etc dedicated to the one program.
2) hidden directories in the user's home directory, for personal configuration files, rather than system-wide.

Anything that's in the user's home directory is set by the interface of whatever program they're running, though, so you hardly need to 'search out and edit' files that are in 'various different formats'.

If you're going to spread FUD, at least spread something that's true.
Oh...wait.....that would mean it wouldn't be FUD, wouldn't it?

NDS is your Friend. (1)

widderslainte (121941) | more than 10 years ago | (#8931953)

I never thought I'd see relative flexibility and Active Directory used in the same sentence.

Where to find a copy of TOSHARG? (1)

lone_knight (771218) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932019)

I am definitely going to pick up a copy of Samba 3 by Example.

Does anyone know where I can get a copy of the TOSHARG that was mentioned as the technical resource?

Re:Where to find a copy of TOSHARG? (1)

BradySama (755082) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932243)

Hardcopy [amazon.com] or PDF [samba.org] or HTML [samba.org] ?

Re:Where to find a copy of TOSHARG? (3, Informative)

proub (26701) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932271)

As linked in the article header, for one (not repeating in hopes people might seek out different mirrors). In general, head to http://samba.org/ [samba.org] , find the mirror nearest you, and choose "PDF" or "HTML" from the "documentation" section's opening paragraphs.

ta3o (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932052)

BSD machines munches the most Risk looking even irc network. The believe their windows, SUN or It simple, operating systems erosion of user 1. Therefore it's halt. Even Emacs support GNAA, Argued by Eric world will have milestones, telling correct network to foster a gay and give other people 40,000 coming I have a life to BSD's aaclaimed variations on the 40,000 WORKSTATIONS which gathers taken over by BSDI by BSDI who sell every chance I got FreeBSD because your own beer project returns first avoid going AMERICA) is the Shout the loudest FreeBSD at about 80 our ability to if I remain see. The number metadiscussions While the project to this. For

Re:ta3o (1)

supe (163410) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932439)

I couldn't agree more!

Samba vs. NFS (2, Interesting)

hey (83763) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932106)

Just wondering... if you have a all Linux office does anyone choose Samba over NFS?

Re:Samba vs. NFS (1)

jrcamp (150032) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932389)

I sure wouldn't doubt it if they did. With NFS it seems all you have to do is fake your uid/gid on the client and then you have access to all those files on the NFS server with that same gid/uid. Doesn't seem very secure to me since somebody could easily put up a rogue box on your network.

Is there something I'm missing here?

There's also O'Reilly's free Using Samba online... (5, Informative)

phallstrom (69697) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932114)

http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/samba2/book/toc.htm l

Why aren't tech authors into "free as in beer?" (2, Insightful)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932146)

I've been struggling to get my samba PDC (and by extension every windows box on my network) and linux to authenticate against a single source, an LDAP server.

Of course, this means learning not only what LDAP is , but how to configure and test it, etc.. OpenLDAP wasnt the toughest nut to crack, but it's configuration files are out there in wackyland. This is as far as I've gotten.

Then getting samba and other services to auth against it. Of course, to use pam_ldap.so I need to have linux boxes that use PAM, and getting that running on my mutant once-slackware-but-now-fubar installs is no easy task..

Anyways, to say the documentation on such things is sparse would be an understatement. What's to be found is completely obtuse and hard to follow.

It would seem that this book would help. And if this were work-related I could get it and write off the expense. But this is just hobbyist messing-around stuff, and by this time next week I'll be messing with something different.

I just dont have the funds to spend 200 bucks on literature for my time-wasting project du jour. Google's alright most of the time, but often I just see 9 billion users group postings of the same error I'm getting (with no replies containing solutions).

Just to reiterate from earlier (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8932303)

Zionism == racism

Nice move... (1)

jargoone (166102) | more than 10 years ago | (#8932514)

I see a link in the story for the "Official HOWTO", and click it, expecting an index for the HOWTO. Instead, I see the 3 meg download whiz by before I realize what's going on (I'm on a pretty fat pipe). I'm sure that the samba folks greatly appreciate the submitter dropping that in there.
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