[Samba] Homegroups

Gary Dale garydale at torfree.net
Fri Nov 8 07:58:57 MST 2013

On 08/11/13 08:14 AM, Gus Zernial wrote:
> I've used Samba to share files on my home LAN, consisting of Linux and Windows systems. So far, I've never enabled Homegroups on the Windows systems. I'm now asked to set up a larger LAN in a school computer laboratory, consisting of 30+ Windows 7 machines, several printers and scanners, and two Linux workstations.
> I expect that homegroups would be the easiest way to set up the Windows systems for file and device sharing, but read/write/print access to/from the Linux systems is a must, and I'm confused as to whether/how/what version of Samba does or does not support homegroups.. My questions are:
> Can a Linux/Samba system be a member of a homegoup?
> Can a Linux/Samba system transfer files to/from Windows systems in a homegroup, even if it is not a member of the homegroup.? Can Windows systems in a homegroup access files on the Linux/Samba system?
> Can both Linux/Samba systems and Windows systems in a homegroup access shared network printers on the LAN?
> Apologies, I know this question has been asked before, but I've googled extensively and I'm still confused as to the best answer to my requirements. If homegroups works in this situation I'd appreciate a link to a howto regards setting this up. If not, please enlighten me as to the best alternative.
> Thanks, Gus
What you are asking about is an abomination.  :)

I would strongly advise against the use of Homegroups or any other 
"workgroup" system on a reasonable size network. Use Samba to create a 
Windows domain so you get the benefit of centralized account management, 

If the Windows 7 machines are using some home/starter version of Windows 
7, upgrade them to Professional as it can participate in a Domain. You 
can use Windows Anytime Upgrade if you don't have a site license for 
your computers.

Note that Windows 7 machines to require a small registry tweak to be 
able to join a windows domain if you are using Samba 3.x. See 
for details.

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