cifs vfs - step by step improvements to better support legacy servers - and also recent ones

Guenter Kukkukk samba at
Sat Mar 8 06:28:56 GMT 2008

In the past, users were able to decide whether to use the smbfs.ko or the 
cifs.ko  kernel module.

Samba now has removed the smbfs userland helper applets
   - smbmount
   - smbmnt
   - smbumount
and the kernel side of smbfs will be removed very soon.

Some linux distros (debian/ubuntu, ...) have already started to
provide "fake" versions of smbmount and smbumount, which
_simply_  just mount cifs instead of smbfs.

To me, such an approach is "just silly and stupid" - and samba
should _not_ support such a mess inside their source tree.

The assumption, that cifs can easily replace smbfs - and only
fumbling with some different calling parameters would be
enough - is  just  WRONG!

Smbfs has been written, when lots of (todays) legacy servers 
(DOS, win9x/me,OS/2, ...) needed support - and new
winNT had to be implemented.

Cifs was a "completely new design", supporting only
  - NT LM 0.12
  - POSIX 2
From the beginnings - no legacy support at all !
Years ago smbfs was "said to be dying" - which raised
the pressure on cifs to "also support former legacy servers",
similar to smbfs.
Cifs has been improved to support "smbfs supported
features" - but atm is failing lots of  smbfs supported

I hope, that ALL distro maintainers now tell their customers,
that smbfs and _all_ samba related helpers have been
gone now! 
And please stop writing silly "wrappers" .... which do not match reality.


Leftover are only "mount.cifs" and "umount.cifs" .

I'm really sure, that cifs can be improved to also support the currently
missing smbfs functionality for legacy servers!  :-)

Have lots of modifications waiting here - step by step.

Cheers, Günter

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