[Samba] Re: samba-ldap and cyrillic

Alexander E. Patrakov patrakov at ums.usu.ru
Fri May 27 05:16:43 GMT 2005

On Thursday 26 May 2005 15:21, Jerome Tournier wrote:
> Hi all,
> i installed a new linux with russian support. I now want to configure Samba
> and OpenLDAP, but i have many problems for users and groups accounts.
> Can i create a user account with cyrillic caracter (as i can on Windows) ?

Yes, but that user will not be able to login on Linux, because the "login" 
program does not accept non-ASCII characers. On the other hand, non-ASCII 
usernames work well in smbclient against Windows PCs if "* charset" 
parameters in smb.conf are set correctly.

> It looks that i can't as memberUid attribute need to be in ASCII mode.

Actually UTF-8.

> So how do russian people do ? I imagine that they use cyrillic caracter for
> their login name, but how can they use samba and ldap to authenticate ?

There is a standard mapping between Russian and Latin characters, called 
"transliteration". It is used e.g. when a foreign passport is given to a 
citizen of Russia. Its current version is described (in Russian) here:


E.g. my name, Александр Патраков, would be transliterated as Alexander 

Basically, there is a mapping of characters (e.g. "Ж" and "ж" become "zh"), 
and also a separate table for names (e.g. "Надежда" becomes "Nadezda" even 
though it contains "ж"). To make it more complicated, name-based surnames are 
also converted using this table (e.g. "Александров" becomes "Alexanderov"). 
The bad news is that even the officials often mis-apply those rules, 
transliterate the same name in different ways, and therefore embassies have 
to give out certificates like "A. Pastuhova and A. Pastukhova are the same 

Beware that an old, obsolete, French-based standard is still mentioned on some 
other web sites and should not be followed.

The usual solution is to use Cyrillic usernames in native Windows domains, and 
transliterated ones in UNIX (and therefore SAMBA).

Alexander E. Patrakov

More information about the samba mailing list