[Samba] Problems with group assignments

F. David del Campo Hill delcampo at stats.ox.ac.uk
Fri May 20 06:43:49 MDT 2011

Dear All,

	We are trying to transfer a SaMBa installation from an old server to a newer more up-to-date one. The original server was sharing files to Windows XP systems in Active Directory (Windows Server 2003 R2 version), but as we move to Windows 7 and Active Directory (Windows Server 2008 R2 version) we need to upgrade the service.

	The old server was part of a NIS domain, with the "valid users", "write list", etc entries in its smb.conf referring to the NIS groups using the "@" sign (which the documentation says it means "is interpreted as an NIS netgroup first (if your system supports NIS), and then as a UNIX group if the name was not found in the NIS netgroup database"; see http://samba.org/samba/docs/man/manpages-3/smb.conf.5.html#INVALIDUSERS). It all worked fine as it picked users' group membership from NIS.

	The new server is a Solaris 10 box running SaMBa 3.5.5, and we are having problems with it picking up the group memberships. The old server's smb.conf was transplanted to the new server (with a few path changes), and the new server was successfully added to our Active Directory domain. As the new server is NOT a member of NIS, we made a copy of all the smb.conf-relevant groups to its local /etc/group and added all the users to the /etc/passwd file. With these changes we can access the shares using the AD usernames and passwords as long as they are not access-limited by "valid users", so the integration of the server into AD is working. But if we add a "valid users = @group" line to the share in smb.conf, it will completely refuse access to all users, even the ones belonging to the group. Leaving the share accessible to all, but adding a "write list = @group" line to smb.conf, will allow access, but no one will be able to write to it, even the members of the group. If we change the "write list" and "valid users" lines to list the usernames directly instead of through a group membership, it works. To avoid even attempting to talk to NIS, we changed the "@" signs for "+", but it still kept refusing to recognize group memberships (NIS or local UNIX ones). So it seems our new SaMBa is having problems recognizing group memberships.

	What am I doing wrong? Have SUN/Oracle done something to stop SaMBa accessing its local UNIX groups?

	Thank you for your help.


		David del Campo

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