browsing a windows network

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at
Wed Jun 19 00:37:50 BST 2002

On Tue, Jun 18, 2002 at 11:28:35PM +0100, jimf wrote:
> Can anybody advise me on the best way to access my school nt4
> network using my laptop with freebsd 4.5 Release.  I would like to
> be able to browse the network and carry out my day tor day work
> similar to the way I do with windows 2000.

Well, the obvious first step is to install Samba.  You then need to
craft yourself an appropriate smb.conf file that will let you
authenticate against the domain servers at your School.  If you use
the following in the [global] section of smb.conf:

	security = SERVER
	password server = your-pdc-host
	username map = /usr/local/etc/

where consists of lines of the form:

        unixlogin = ntlogin

you should then be able to access shared drives using smbclient ---
give your NT password when prompted.  (Nb. You only need to use the
username map feature if your logon on your FreeBSD laptop happens to
be different from your school account.)

Caveat: authentication with the NT domain works the other way round
too: any filesystems you export from your machine to the NT boxes can
potentially be accessed from a domain account *using just their NT
password* so long as there is a matching unix username on your laptop.

Control access by creating a Unix group eg. smbusers, making only the
people you want to have access members of that group and then placing:

	valid users = @smbusers

into the appropriate place(s) in smb.conf.  Another good thing is:

	restrict anonymous = yes

See the smb.conf(5) man page for the full story. 

You can look into mount_ntfs(8) to mount NT shares onto your mobile,
although as far as I'm aware there's no way of combining that with
something like amd(8) so you won't get anything like the "Network
Neighbourhood" experience --- you'll need to know what machines to
access and manually mount and unmount the shares.

As for other Windows services: FreeBSD should be able to use a NT DNS
or DHCP server with a reasonable degree of success.  You know all
about {Star,Open}Office for Word docs already.  fetchmail (from ports)
has some authentication tricks to let it download e-mail from an
Exchange server.  I can't, off hand, think of any free software for
accessing the Calendar functions of Exchange, although Ximian
Evolution (also in ports) apparently has a pay-for add on that will do
the trick.


Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                       26 The Paddocks
                                                      Savill Way
Tel: +44 1628 476614                                  Marlow
Fax: +44 0870 0522645                                 Bucks., SL7 1TH UK

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