web server in Samba4

Andrew Tridgell tridge at osdl.org
Mon May 30 00:07:25 GMT 2005


 > I think this is going to be a waste of your time.
 > Nobody will use it because they're already using
 > existing UI config mechanisms for samba, and will simply carry
 > on using them. For example I use webmin.

I'm glad you're happy with webmin, and I hope the webmin developers
add support for Samba4, but it isn't really a good solution as a
general interface for us to recommend to Samba users.

First off, webmin is only available on some platforms. We are still
trying to make sure Samba works on a really wide variety of OSes so we
don't want to be reliant on something that only runs on a subset of
those OSes.

Secondly, webmin for Samba is a fairly minimal interface. It only
presents a quite limited subset of the configuration options that
Samba has support for. If we go to the trouble of having a
configuration option in Samba then I think we should support setting
that option in our standard management interface.

Finally webmin can never give the type of interface we want for Samba4
as it doesn't have direct access to the internal Samba data
structures. By running inside smbd we can provide much more detailed
monitoring of the various subsystems.

 > Writing your own httpd seems to me like the ultimate in
 > wheel re-inventing. Fine for a grad student that wants
 > to beef up her resume, but difficult IMHO to justify
 > otherwise.

we've had our own web server in Samba for many years (the current SWAT
has a builtin web server). It has been very useful at a lot of sites,
and I have certainly seen a lot more sites using SWAT than I have seen
using webmin. 

I think the problems with the current SWAT are:

1) its not a rich enough interface for advancaed users. That means
   advancd users (and team members) don't use it, so it tends to
   suffer from lack of development effort. 

2) it isn't installed by default, so the people who most need it
   (those who are just getting started with Samba) don't use it unless
   someone helps them get SWAT installed.

I want to cover these two extremes with SWAT in Samba4. We have
covered the second point by making SWAT work as soon as smbd starts
up, with no config. This means our install instructions can be 'run
smbd, then point your browser at http://server:901/'.

We will try to cover the first point by having things like a good ldb
editor and good diagnostics interface in the web interface. If we do
this well enough then even advanced users will want to use the web

Cheers, Tridge

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