[Samba] MacOS X 10.6, symlinks and shadow copies

Jonathan Buzzard jonathan at buzzard.me.uk
Tue Jul 5 08:21:26 MDT 2011

Running with Samba 3.5.4, the Samba3x packages from CentOS 5.6 with
added gpfs and tsmsm VFS modules against a GPFS file system.
Unix extensions are turned off because otherwise OS X 10.5 messes with
group ownership and permissions and shares for "groups" don't work as
required. Unfortunately being at a University I don't get to control the
environment tightly, unless someone knows of a way of banning OS X 10.5
clients server side.

The issue is that MacOS X 10.6 won't create symlinks. That is 10.4 and
10.5 create the Minshall & French style symlink, but 10.6 just gives an
error. The symlinks are used in login hooks to redirect certain folders
on network home directories to the local disk. Consequently getting them
to work is important.

We tried a perl script that created correctly formatted Minshall &
French 1067 byte files but 10.6 does not initially recognize them as
symlinks only latter to do so!!!

However we have accidentally discovered that enabling the shadow_copy2
VFS module causes 10.6 to create the Minshall & French style symlinks
using ln -s without problems.

I am somewhat at a loss to understand what is going on. The best I can
come up with is that 10.6 is prodding the file server to see what it is
capable of and determines that if it is shadow copy capable it must be a
Windows server and tries to make Minshall & French style symlinks
otherwise it incorrectly assumes that Samba will have Unix extensions
turned on.

Does anyone have a better explanation?


Jonathan A. Buzzard                 Email: jonathan (at) buzzard.me.uk
Fife, United Kingdom.

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