[Samba] How to connect across the Internet

David Rankin drankin at cox-internet.com
Thu Feb 21 19:41:05 GMT 2002


    To connect to shares across the internet Windows 98, etc. has a built
in VPN PPTP protocal it uses in dial up networking. Just like a normal
dial-up to an ISP, but instead of talking PPP it talks PPTP or (point to
point tunneling protocol). This lets you do some great stuff.

    I have a small law office with a Mandrake 7.2 (2.2.19 kernel)/Samba
2.09 server. The rest of the office consists of a mix of Win95, Win98 and
WinME machines. At home I have a Win98 machine. At work I have my Linux
box running the pptpd (PopTop) daemon.  From home I connect over the
internet to my Linux box and it is just like I'm sitting at my office.
All shares on all machines are visable/accessable and I can print from
home to the laserjet that is attached to my secretary's computer at work!
Throughput is good, but not as good as FTP, but let's see you print from
home and have it come out on the printer at work with FTP.

    My basic setup is as follows:

 [HOME Win98] => [cable internet] => [WORK Linksys cable/dsl router]
=> [WORK Mdk 7.2/pptpd] =>[other WinXX machines and printers on lan at

    Poptop has been a solid solution for my VPN needs. It's not that
difficult to set up on a Linux box and the security using CHAP
authentication is workable. (It has a feew quirks, but on balance it's
really good)

    It's been running on my server for, let's see, ...

[david at Nemesis david]$ uptime
  9:19pm  up 242 days,  6:59,  1 user,  load average: 0.00, 0.00, 0.00

about that long. Since it's been running that long, I have forgotten all
the nuances of setting it up, but the basics are to set a few config
items, make up a range of IP #s to share, set up the chap_secrets file
(just a simple username/password file), start the pptpd daemon, on
Windows - make a new dial up networking VPN connection and click go!

    Really, through windows explorer at home you will see all of the
shares on the Linux box as well as all other shares and printers on WinXX
boxes that are connected to the Linux box via a lan.

    The docs on the poptop site are sparse but workable. Just don't
forget to set:


and, as root

"echo 1 >/proc/sys/net/ipv4/ip_forward"

    Good luck!

Lonnie Cumberland wrote:

> Hello David,
> I went out to the site to try and get an idea what this PPTP is all
> about and am still a little unclear.
> > See http:\\poptop.lineo.com
> what I need, and I thought that Samba would have done a good job, is
> a very simple solution for my Windows users with minimal installation
> required on their side to be able to connect to their home
> directories on our Linux server.
> Currently, by using Samba, then all that the users have to do is
> to "map a network drive" to our server and work with their files.
> Is PPTP a better choice?
> Is the information that I am getting to suggest that Samba in not the
> best solution for this problem?
> could you please elaborate a little as I am a little new to this?
> Thanks,
> Lonnie
> --
>  Lonnie Cumberland
>  OutStep Technologies Incorporated
>  EMAIL: Lonnie at OutStep.com
>       : Lonnie_Cumberland at yahoo.com

David C. Rankin, J.D., P.E.
1329 N. University, Suite D4
Nacogdoches, Texas 75961
(936) 715-9333
(936) 715-9339 fax

More information about the samba mailing list