Samba/MS Access Files

Chris Andrews chris at
Sun Jan 28 21:14:57 GMT 2001

> From: Doug Jolley <doug at>
> Hi --
> I'm trying to move an MS Access database (.mdb file) from an
> MS Windows-based server to a Linux-based server running Samba.
> Multiple users on Win98-based workstations can open the database
> when it is hosted on the Windows server.  However, when the
> database is moved to the Linux server and the same users attempt
> to do the same thing only the first user can open the database.
> When another user attempts to open it, Access complains that
> there are too many users.  The help info says that the number
> of users is limited to 255.  We only have 2.  Can anyone give me
> any information on this problem and/or point me to where I can
> find such info?


We've had just this problem, and our solution was to use:

force create mode = 666

in the share definition where you keep your database. This means that when
Access creates a lock file (.ldb), which it does as a specific user, it
creates it with mode 0666 which means that any other user can modify it,
which is what you need for multiple concurrent use of an Access database.
The first user creates the lock file if it doesn't exist, and all
subsequent users modify it to announce their presence.

Sure, there are permissions issues with this. Perhaps there's a way of
special-casing .ldb files. 

I suppose that this is the default for a Windows server (hence no problems
with sharing Access databases), so maybe this point should be made more
clearly in the Samba documentation - perhaps even pointed out in the
default smb.conf?


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