Introduction to Samba

The Samba package provides file and print services to SMB/CIFS clients and Windows networking to Linux clients. Samba can also be configured as a Windows Domain Controller replacement, a file/print server acting as a member of a Windows Active Directory domain and a NetBIOS (rfc1001/1002) nameserver (which among other things provides LAN browsing support).

This package is known to build and work properly using an LFS-7.7 platform.

Package Information

  • Download (HTTP):

  • Download MD5 sum: 8fed0f23a672e6a8d0716d96aca88671

  • Download size: 19 MB

  • Estimated disk space required: 416 MB (additional 397 MB for the quicktest, reputedly up to 500 MB additional for all tests)

  • Estimated build time: 2.7 SBU, using parallelism=4 (additional 4.5 SBU for the quicktest, reputedly up to 110 SBU to run all tests)

Samba Dependencies





Avahi-0.6.31, Cups-2.0.2, GnuTLS-3.3.12, libcap-2.24 with PAM, libgpg-error-1.18, Linux-PAM-1.1.8, MIT Kerberos V5-1.13.1, OpenLDAP-2.4.40, popt-1.16, Valgrind-3.10.1 (optionally used by the test suite), xfsprogs-3.2.2, Gamin, ctdb, libaio, libunwind, OpenAFS, and tdb

User Notes:

Installation of Samba



If you wish to run the test suite after the binaries are built, you must add the -/-enable-socket-wrapper and -/-enable-selftest parameters to the configure script below. You may want to run configure with the -/-help parameter first. There may be other parameters needed to take advantage of optional dependencies.

Install Samba by running the following commands:

./configure                             \
    --prefix=/usr                       \
    --sysconfdir=/etc                   \
    --localstatedir=/var                \
    --with-piddir=/run/samba            \
    --with-pammodulesdir=/lib/security  \
    --without-systemd                   \
    --enable-fhs                        \
    --enable-nss-wrapper                &&


According to Samba developers, the limitation to 108 characters of the path length of a unix named pipe socket may be the cause of errors, so that over 1/3 of the tests might fail. For this reason, the switch --with-selftest-prefix=/tmp/quick (or another path with small number of characters) can be used with configure. Even so, the “samba3.raw.eas” test may fail, apparently for the same reason. If one quicktest fails, it can be disabled. For example, “samba3.raw.eas” may be disabled with the following command:

sed -i "/samba3.blackbox.failure.failure/i \^samba3.raw.eas" selftest/knownfail

To test the results, as the root user, issue: make quicktest 2>&1 | tee quicktest.log. Summary of the test results and some other information may be obtained with grep -A5 testsuites quicktest.log. There are other targets (test, subunit-test) available, but take a very long time (over 100 SBU).

Now, as the root user:

make install &&

mv -v /usr/lib/libnss_win{s,bind}.so*   /lib                       &&
ln -v -sf ../../lib/ /usr/lib/ &&
ln -v -sf ../../lib/    /usr/lib/    &&

install -v -m644    examples/smb.conf.default /etc/samba &&

mkdir -pv /etc/openldap/schema                        &&

install -v -m644    examples/LDAP/README              \
                    /etc/openldap/schema/README.LDAP  &&
install -v -m644    examples/LDAP/samba*              \
                    /etc/openldap/schema              &&
install -v -m755    examples/LDAP/{get*,ol*} \
                    /etc/openldap/schema              &&

install -v -m755 -d /usr/share/doc/samba-4.1.17 &&

install -v -m644    lib/ntdb/doc/design.pdf \

Command Explanations

--enable-fhs: Assigns all other file paths in a manner compliant with the Filesystem Hierarchy Standard (FHS).

--enable-nss-wrapper: Builds the nss-wrapper library.

--without-systemd: Disable systemd integration, which is not part of LFS/BLFS. If you use systemd, replace by --with-systemd.

mv -v /usr/lib/libnss_win{s,bind}.so* /lib: The nss libraries are installed in /usr/lib by default. Move them to /lib.

ln -v -sf ../../lib/ /usr/lib/ and ln -v -sf ../../lib/ /usr/lib/ These symlinks are required when applicates build against these libraries.

install -v -m644 examples/LDAP/* /etc/openldap/schema: These commands are used to copy sample Samba schemas to the OpenLDAP schema directory.

install -v -m644 ../examples/smb.conf.default /etc/samba: This copies a default smb.conf file into /etc/samba. This sample configuration will not work until you copy it to /etc/samba/smb.conf and make the appropriate changes for your installation. See the configuration section for minimum values which must be set.

Configuring Samba

Config Files


Printing to SMB Clients

If you use CUPS for print services, and you wish to print to a printer attached to an SMB client, you need to create an SMB backend device. To create the device, issue the following command as the root user:

ln -v -sf /usr/bin/smbspool /usr/lib/cups/backend/smb

Configuration Information

Due to the complexity and the many various uses for Samba, complete configuration for all the package's capabilities is well beyond the scope of the BLFS book. This section provides instructions to configure the /etc/samba/smb.conf file for two common scenarios. The complete contents of /etc/samba/smb.conf will depend on the purpose of Samba installation.



You may find it easier to copy the configuration parameters shown below into an empty /etc/samba/smb.conf file instead of copying and editing the default file as mentioned in the “Command Explanations” section. How you create/edit the /etc/samba/smb.conf file will be left up to you. Do ensure the file is only writeable by the root user (mode 644).

Scenario 1: Minimal Standalone Client-Only Installation

Choose this variant if you only want to transfer files using smbclient, mount Windows shares and print to Windows printers, and don't want to share your files and printers to Windows machines.

A /etc/samba/smb.conf file with the following three parameters is sufficient:

    workgroup = MYGROUP
    dos charset = cp850
    unix charset = ISO-8859-1

The values in this example specify that the computer belongs to a Windows workgroup named “MYGROUP”, uses the “cp850” character set on the wire when talking to MS-DOS and MS Windows 9x, and that the filenames are stored in the “ISO-8859-1” encoding on the disk. Adjust these values appropriately for your installation. The “unix charset” value must be the same as the output of locale charmap when executed with the LANG variable set to your preferred locale, otherwise the ls command may not display correct filenames of downloaded files.

There is no need to run any Samba servers in this scenario, thus you don't need to install the provided bootscripts.

Scenario 2: Standalone File/Print Server

Choose this variant if you want to share your files and printers to Windows machines in your workgroup in addition to the capabilities described in Scenario 1.

In this case, the /etc/samba/smb.conf.default file may be a good template to start from. Also add “dos charset” and “unix charset” parameters to the “[global]” section as described in Scenario 1 in order to prevent filename corruption. For security reasons, you may wish to define path = /home/alice/shared-files, assuming your user name is alice and you only want to share the files in that directory, instead of your entire home. Then, replace homes by shared-files and change also the “comment” if used the configuration file below or the /etc/samba/smb.conf.default to create yours.

The following configuration file creates a separate share for each user's home directory and also makes all printers available to Windows machines:

    workgroup = MYGROUP
    dos charset = cp850
    unix charset = ISO-8859-1

    comment = Home Directories
    browseable = no
    writable = yes

    comment = All Printers
    path = /var/spool/samba
    browseable = no
    guest ok = no
    printable = yes

Other parameters you may wish to customize in the “[global]” section include:

    server string =
    security =
    hosts allow =
    load printers =
    log file =
    max log size =
    socket options =
    local master =

Reference the comments in the /etc/samba/smb.conf.default file for information regarding these parameters.

Since the smbd and nmbd daemons are needed in this case, install the samba bootscript. Be sure to run smbpasswd (with the -a option to add users) to enable and set passwords for all accounts that need Samba access. Using the default Samba passdb backend, any user you attempt to add will also be required to exist in the /etc/passwd file.

Advanced Requirements

More complex scenarios involving domain control or membership are possible. Such setups are advanced topics and cannot be adequately covered in BLFS. Many complete books have been written on these topics alone. Note that in some domain membership scenarios, the winbindd daemon and the corresponding bootscript are needed.

There is quite a bit of documentation available which covers many of these advanced configurations. Point your web browser to the links below to view some of the documentation included with the Samba package:

Boot Script

For your convenience, boot scripts have been provided for Samba. There are two included in the blfs-bootscripts-20150304 package. The first, samba, will start the smbd and nmbd daemons needed to provide SMB/CIFS services. The second script, winbind, starts the winbindd daemon, used for providing Windows domain services to Linux clients.

The default Samba installation uses the nobody user for guest access to the server. This can be overridden by setting the guest account = parameter in the /etc/samba/smb.conf file. If you utilize the guest account = parameter, ensure this user exists in the /etc/passwd file. To use the default user, issue the following commands as the root user:

groupadd -g 99 nogroup &&
useradd -c "Unprivileged Nobody" -d /dev/null -g nogroup \
    -s /bin/false -u 99 nobody

Install the samba script with the following command issued as the root user:

make install-samba

If you also need the winbindd script to resolve names from Windows clients, run:

make install-winbindd


Installed Programs: cifsdd, dbwrap_tool, eventlogadm, gentest, ldbadd, ldbdel, ldbedit, ldbmodify, ldbrename, ldbsearch, locktest, masktest, ndrdump, net, nmbd, nmblookup, nmblookup4, ntdbbackup, ntdbdump, ntdbrestore, ntdbtool, ntlm_auth, oLschema2ldif, pdbedit, pidl, profiles, regdiff, regpatch, regshell, regtree, rpcclient, samba, samba_dnsupdate, samba_kcc, samba-regedit, samba_spnupdate, samba-tool, samba_upgradedns, sharesec, smbcacls, smbclient, smbclient4, smbcontrol, smbcquotas, smbd, smbget, smbpasswd, smbspool, smbstatus, smbtar, smbta-util, smbtorture, smbtree, tdbbackup, tdbdump, tdbrestore, tdbtool, testparm, wbinfo, and winbindd
Installed Libraries:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, and; the and PAM libraries; and assorted character set, filesystem and support modules under /usr/lib/{python2.7,samba}
Installed Directories: /etc/samba, /run/samba, /usr/include/samba-4.0, /usr/lib/perl5/vendor_perl/5.x.y/Parse/Pidl/{Samba{3,4},Wireshark}, /usr/lib/python2.7/site-packages/samba, /usr/lib/samba, /usr/share/doc/samba-4.1.17, /usr/share/samba, and /var/{cache,lib,lock,log,run}/samba

Short Descriptions


is used to write records to eventlogs from STDIN, add the specified source and DLL eventlog registry entries and display the active eventlog names (from smb.conf).


is a command-line utility for adding records to an LDB database.


is a command-line program for deleting LDB database records.


allows you to edit LDB databases using your preferred editor.


allows you to modify records in an LDB database.


allows you to edit LDB databases using your preferred editor.


searches an LDB database for records matching a specified expression.


is a tool for administration of Samba and remote CIFS servers, similar to the net utility for DOS/Windows.


is the Samba NetBIOS name server.


is used to query NetBIOS names and map them to IP addresses.


is a tool to allow external access to Winbind's NTLM authentication function.


is a tool used to manage the SAM database.


is a utility that reports and changes SIDs in Windows registry files. It currently only supports Windows NT.


is used to execute MS-RPC client side functions.


manipulates share ACL permissions on SMB file shares.


is used to manipulate Windows NT access control lists.


is a SMB/CIFS access utility, similar to FTP.


is used to control running smbd, nmbd and winbindd daemons.


is used to manipulate Windows NT quotas on SMB file shares.


is the main Samba daemon which provides SMB/CIFS services to clients.


is a simple utility with wget-like semantics, that can download files from SMB servers. You can specify the files you would like to download on the command-line.


changes a user's Samba password.


sends a print job to an SMB printer.


reports current Samba connections.


is a shell script used for backing up SMB/CIFS shares directly to Linux tape drives or a file.


is a text-based SMB network browser.


is a tool for backing up or validating the integrity of Samba .tdb files.


is a tool used to print the contents of a Samba .tdb file.


is a tool which allows simple database manipulation from the command line.


checks an smb.conf file for proper syntax.


queries a running winbindd daemon.


resolves names from Windows NT servers.

provides Name Service Switch API functions for resolving names from NT servers.

provides API functions for Samba's implementation of the Windows Internet Naming Service.

provides the API functions for the administration tools used for Samba and remote CIFS servers.

provides the API functions for the Samba SMB client tools.

provides API functions for accessing SMB share modes (locks etc.)

provides API functions for Windows domain client services.

Last updated on 2015-03-01 17:45:33 -0800