Server series Samba and webmin........
Is it possible to do a Samba tutorial without a musical jest? Jonni Bidwell puts his foot down, then the other foot, and now he’s gone full bossa nova.
With the base LXF server configured, Jonni Bidwell explains how to tweak webmin and Samba for a funky time.
If you followed our previous tutorial, you’ll have seen how it’s possible to access files on the server over the SSH service, using the sftp:// syntax in a file manager. There are also command line tools to do this, namely sftp and scp, but we live in a world of multiple operating systems and not all of these will readily dance to SSH’s tune. Also, sending huge amounts of data over SSH is pretty inefficient – it was never meant for such antics. While Linux has its own filesharing mechanism, NFS, Windows’ SMB (Server Message Block) protocol family, and in particular the CIFS (Common Internet File System) dialect, has become the defacto standard for achieving this today. Since serving files is one of the most useful duties a server can perform, it would be nice if our machine danced to the CIFS tune. And thanks to Samba, it can.
Before we proceed there are a few standard caveats. Firstly, it’s never a good idea to share your whole root filesystem with write access, so don’t do that. Secondly, it’s also generally not a good idea to share private things, even if they are read-only and even if ostensibly only family members/cohabiters have access to them. If one of their devices gets compromised, then there is the possibility that so does your data. Finally, while this tutorial is IPv4-centric and most people’s home networks lie hidden from the perils of the internet at large behind a NAT layer, the world is slowly waking up to IPv6. UK ISPs in particular are starting to offer IPv6 connectivity, and in the absence of a proper firewall machines connected thusly have no concept of a local network – any machine in the world could connect to their service. So be wary of offering services over IPv6, we’ll explicitly deactivate it for Samba and Webmin.
With that out of the way, we can now update our server’s software and install the required tools. You can do this either through logging-in in the old -fashioned way, or by SSHing in from elsewhere on your network. It’s always a good idea to keep the packages on your server up to date, which can be done by running the following: $ sudo apt-get update $ sudo apt-get upgrade
Debian generally only provides security-themed updates, so these commands shouldn’t result in huge amounts of data being downloaded and breaking changes resulting from major version upgrades. Unless of course you don’t run them for a long time, in which case your risk of being hacked is increased, so try and do this at least weekly. This also avoids the situation where you try to install an outdated version of the package that has been stricken from the repos.