[Samba] Inclusion of libnss_wins in vendor distros?

Jonathan Johnson jon at sutinen.com
Sat Dec 24 02:06:53 GMT 2005

This might be a stupid question, but I ask only because I can't think of
a good reason...

Why do so many vendors' builds of Samba not include libnss_wins, the
WINS/NetBIOS name resolution library? I find that it is very helpful for
my Linux/Samba servers to be able to resolve hostnames by WINS. It also
seems to improve domain browsing performance dramatically to have the
library present and enabled in nsswitch.conf. It seems to me to be such
a basic and essential part of the SMB protocol, yet many distributions
omit it. It's very annoying. I guess the solution is to always build
Samba using the latest stable sources from samba.org.

Perhaps someone thinks it's a security vulnerability and therefore
shouldn't be included by default, but would a system be any less secure
if the library was included but not disabled by default? Besides, in my
experience, even when the WINS libraries are included, nsswitch.conf
must be edited to enable it -- I don't see the mere presence of
libnss_wins.so on a system making it any less vulnerable, just as having
a key on the inside of a locked door doesn't make the house any less secure.

Any good reasons why it wouldn't be included?

--Jon Johnson
Sutinen Consulting, Inc.

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