Table of Contents
Since the release of the first edition of this book there have been repeated requests to better document configuration techniques that may help a network administrator to get more out of Samba. Some users have asked for documentation regarding the use of the include = file-name parameter.
Commencing around mid-2004 there has been increasing interest in the ability to host multiple Samba servers on one machine. There has also been an interest in the hosting of multiple Samba server personalities on one server.
Feedback from technical reviewers made the inclusion of this chapter a necessity. So, here is an answer the questions that have to date not been adequately addressed. Additional user input is welcome as it will help this chapter to mature. What is presented here is just a small beginning.
There are a number of ways in which multiple servers can be hosted on a single Samba server. Multiple server hosting makes it possible to host multiple domain controllers on one machine. Each such machine is independent, and each can be stopped or started without affecting another.
Sometimes it is desirable to host multiple servers, each with its own security mode. For example, a single UNIX/Linux host may be a domain member server (DMS) as well as a generic anonymous print server. In this case, only domain member machines and domain users can access the DMS, but even guest users can access the generic print server. Another example of a situation where it may be beneficial to host a generic (anonymous) server is to host a CDROM server.
Some environments dictate the need to have separate servers, each with their own resources, each of which are accessible only by certain users or groups. This is one of the simple, but highly effective, ways that Samba can replace many physical Windows servers in one Samba installation.
The use of multiple server hosting involves running multiple separate instances of Samba, each with it's own
configuration file. This method is complicated by the fact that each instance of nmbd, smbd and winbindd
must have write access to entirely separate TDB files. The ability to keep separate the TDB files used by
nmbd, smbd and winbindd can be enabled either by recompiling Samba for each server hosted so each has its
own default TDB directories, or by configuring these in the
smb.conf file, in which case each instance of
nmbd, smbd and winbindd must be told to start up with its own
smb.conf configuration file.
Each instance should operate on its own IP address (that independent IP address can be an IP Alias). Each instance of nmbd, smbd and winbindd should listen only on its own IP socket. This can be secured using the socket address parameter. Each instance of the Samba server will have its own SID also, this means that the servers are discrete and independent of each other.
The user of multiple server hosting is non-trivial, and requires careful configuration of each aspect of
process management and start up. The
smb.conf parameters that must be carefully configured includes:
private dir, pid directory,lock directory, interfaces, bind interfaces only, netbios name, workgroup, socket address.
Those who elect to create multiple Samba servers should have the ability to read and follow the Samba source code, and to modify it as needed. This mode of deployment is considered beyond the scope of this book. However, if someone will contribute more comprehensive documentation we will gladly review it, and if it is suitable extend this section of this chapter. Until such documentation becomes available the hosting of multiple samba servers on a single host is considered not supported for Samba-3 by the Samba Team.
Samba has the ability to host multiple virtual servers, each of which have their own personality. This is
achieved by configuring an
smb.conf file that is common to all personalities hosted. Each server
personality is hosted using its own netbios alias name, and each has its own distinct
[global] section. Each server may have its own stanzas for services and meta-services.
When hosting multiple virtual servers, each with their own personality, each can be in a different workgroup. Only the primary server can be a domain member or a domain controller. The personality is defined by the combination of the security mode it is operating in, the netbios aliases it has, and the workgroup that is defined for it.
This configuration style can be used either with NetBIOS names, or using NetBIOS-less SMB over TCP services.
If run using NetBIOS mode (the most common method) it is important that the parameter smb ports = 139 should be specified in the primary
smb.conf file. Failure to do this will result
in Samba operating over TCP port 445 and problematic operation at best, and at worst only being able to obtain
the functionality that is specified in the primary
smb.conf file. The use of NetBIOS over TCP/IP using only
TCP port 139 means that the use of the
%L macro is fully enabled. If the smb ports = 139 is not specified (the default is
445 139, or if
the value of this parameter is set at
139 445 then the
is not serviceable.
It is possible to host multiple servers, each with their own personality, using port 445 (the NetBIOS-less SMB
port), in which case the
%i macro can be used to provide separate server identities (by
IP Address). Each can have its own security mode. It will be necessary to use the
interfaces, bind interfaces only and IP aliases in addition to
the netbios name parameters to create the virtual servers. This method is considerably
more complex than that using NetBIOS names only using TCP port 139.
Consider an example environment that consists of a standalone, user-mode security Samba server and a read-only Windows 95 file server that has to be replaced. Instead of replacing the Windows 95 machine with a new PC, it is possible to add this server as a read-only anonymous file server that is hosted on the Samba server. Here are some parameters:
The Samba server is called
ELASTIC, its workgroup name is
The CDROM server is called
CDSERVER and its workgroup is
possible implementation is shown here:
smb.conf file for the master server is shown in Elastic smb.conf File.
This file is placed in the
/etc/samba directory. Only the nmbd and the smbd daemons
are needed. When started the server will appear in Windows Network Neighborhood as the machine
ELASTIC under the workgroup
ROBINSNEST. It is helpful if the Windows
clients that must access this server are also in the workgroup
ROBINSNEST as this will make
browsing much more reliable.
Example 34.1. Elastic smb.conf File
|# Global parameters|
The configuration file for the CDROM server is listed in CDROM Server
smb-cdserver.conf file. This file is called
smb-cdserver.conf and it should be
located in the
/etc/samba directory. Machines that are in the workgroup
ARTSDEPT will be able to browse this server freely.
Example 34.2. CDROM Server smb-cdserver.conf file
The two servers have different resources and are in separate workgroups. The server
can only be accessed by uses who have an appropriate account on the host server. All users will be able to
access the CDROM data that is stored in the
/export/cddata directory. File system
permissions should set so that the
others user has read-only access to the directory and its
contents. The files can be owned by root (any user other than the nobody account).
In this example, the requirement is for a primary domain controller for the domain called
MIDEARTH. The PDC will be called
MERLIN. An extra machine called
SAURON is required. Each machine will have only its own shares. Both machines belong to the
smb.conf file is shown in the Master smb.conf File Global Section.
The two files that specify the share information for each server are shown in the
smb-merlin.conf File Share Section, and the smb-sauron.conf File Share
Section. All three files are locate in the
Example 34.3. Master smb.conf File Global Section
|# Global parameters|
Example 34.4. MERLIN smb-merlin.conf File Share Section
|# Global parameters|
Example 34.5. SAURON smb-sauron.conf File Share Section