[Samba] cifs verses smbfs for Linux clients

David C. Rankin drankinatty at suddenlinkmail.com
Mon Feb 18 23:59:37 GMT 2008

Michael Lueck wrote:
> I am somewhat confused...
> I understand that the preferred method to mount a Samba share with a 
> Linux client is to use "mount -t cifs" rather than "mount -t smbfs".
> I get the impression that smbfs is samba.org developed code where as 
> cifs is from elsewhere. Thus the point of confusion. Why is samba.org 
> not developing the preferred code in this case?
> A sub question to that main one is a nagging thought of needing to add 
> the Debian / Ubuntu smbfs package to Linux client systems issuing "mount 
> -t cifs". If cifs really is from elsewhere, and smbfs is "bad evil", why 
> the interdependency?
> Thanks!

If I recall correctly smbfs was deprecated in favor of cifs when cifs 
was made a permanent part of the kernel in the 2.4 or 2.4-2.6 kernel. 
This provided a uniform way to implement an smbfs mount through the 
kernel instead or relying on package dependent smbmount.

Whether you are doing:

mount -t smbfs; or
mount -t cifs   (also mount.cifs)

your are accomplishing the same thing. I used smbmount for a long time, 
then cifs was made the standard and I have used cifs since then. I have 
no complaints.

 From man mount:

Since   various   versions  of  the  smbmount  program  have  different 
  calling  conventions, /sbin/mount.smbfs may have to be a shell script 
that sets up the desired call.

David C. Rankin, J.D., P.E.
Rankin Law Firm, PLLC
510 Ochiltree Street
Nacogdoches, Texas 75961
Telephone: (936) 715-9333
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