[Samba] How to share the tape drive in samba server for windows user

Jay Fenlason fenlason at redhat.com
Wed Jun 18 18:28:50 GMT 2003

On Wed, Jun 18, 2003 at 09:46:52AM -0700, Jonathan Johnson wrote:

> If you're looking to share the tape drive so you can use Windows' native
> backup utility to write directly to the tape, sorry -- can't be done with
> Samba. This is because a tape drive is not seen by the system as a disk
> drive; the software wants to communicate directly with the drive. A tape
> drive is a sequential, exclusive access device, not a random access device.
> That means that only one process can read/write to the drive at a time, and
> the tape is written/read from front to back.

You could probably do something clever with a magic script in the
Samba config, but it still wouldn't work with native Windows backup
utilities.  (Are there native Windows backup utilities that can access
a remote tape drive?)  You could probably get it to work with tar
under Cygwin if you tried hard enough.  But if Cygwin's tar doesn't
have remote-tape access disabled, you'd be better off using that
instead--it's much lower overhead.


> A quick search reveals this software to look at: NovaNet
> (www.network-backup.com), Arkeia (www.arkeia.com), NetVault Workgroup
> Edition (www.bakbone.com), (Veritas BackupExec not available for Linux,)
> anyone know of open-source, multi-platform network-aware backup software?

There's always Amanda (http://www.amanda.org/).  It can back up
Windows clients in one of several ways.  The three obvious ones are:

1: build the Amanda client software under Cygwin.  See
for instructions.  I use this method to back up my Windows 2K laptop.

2: use Amanda's smbclient interface as described in the Amanda

3: smbmount (or other network filesystem) the Windows client drive on
a Unix/Linux/BSD machine and have Amanda back that up.

There's been some effort to create a native Windows Amanda client, but
I don't think it's completed or usable yet.

				-- JF

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