[Samba] VFS objects - how to migrate/move file_ntacls.tdb

Jonathan Buzzard jonathan at buzzard.me.uk
Tue Nov 15 16:08:05 MST 2011

Jeremy Allison wrote:
> On Mon, Nov 14, 2011 at 02:12:35PM +0100, adrian.berlin wrote:
>> Hi!
>> Does anyone know how to move/migrate ACLs from file_ntacls.tdb to another machine?
>> I tried manually copy file_ntacls.tdb and restart samba but it doesn't work.
>> Also I tried to dump and restore tdb file using tdbdump and tdbrestore without success.
> That's not going to work as the ACL data is indexed by dev/ino pairs
> in the tdb, and on the new machine they will be different.
> You'll need to use a backup tool that copies the ACLs as you
> copy the data.

Once you are into using ACL' best method to transfer the files from one 
server to another is to take a Windows machine map the drive on both 
servers and use robocopy or similar tool that will preserve permissions 
while doing a file synchronization.

Robocopy from Vista or Win7 is better as you can use

ROBOCOPY <source> <target> /MIR /SEC /SECFIX

The last option fixes the security on existing files in the target, and 
appeared in Vista.

I would note that files_ntacls.tdb is not really suitable for a 
production file server, unless you are going to back it up from a client 
machine that is. The reason being a restore is going to leave you 
without your ACL's and no way to ever recover it because the inodes of 
the files will almost certainly be different. Much more sensible to 
store it in xattr's if you ask me, at least that way you have a fighting 
chance of getting the ACL's back. You can also fiddle with the files 
server side without messing up your file_ntacls.tdb database.

Better yet use a file system that does NFSv4 ACL's and a suitable VFS 
module :-)


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

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