Ask the Expert

Samba configuration, part one: What's the scoop on Red Hat's new tool?

Red Hat has created a new tool -- Redhat-config-samba -- for configuring Samba. It's included in the beta version of Red Hat's next Linux release. What other tools are available, and how do they compare with each other and the Red Hat tool?

    Requires Free Membership to View

Red Hat has produced a GUI configuration tool. Criticism is valid only with reference to requirements. I do not know what those requirements were. Perhaps this tool really does meet or exceed the specifications towhich it was written. I just do not know.

What do you want a GUI configuration tool to do? There's the obvious response: "I want it to configure my Samba server." Apart from that, we need to address the needs of the audience who might use the tool.

Is a tool to be designed for use by RHCEs who already know everything about editing configuration files using Vi? If so, then why do they need a tool? Do we need a tool for experts who already know everything about Samba, but do not know how to use Vi? Unlikely!

Is it likely that you would (could) write a GUI tool for someone who knows NOTHING about Linux, Samba, or Microsoft Windows networking? Well, please do NOT ask me to write such a device; it would need to be a golden panacea!

So who needs a GUI tool? If we can answer that question, then we stand a chance of making some sense in a highly opinionated world.

So, let me create a hypothetical user need. My reasoning behind the scenario is as follows:

1. Someone who has decided to migrate to Linux will likely put in the effort needed to understand the language of the new environment. There will be a learning curve.

2. Given are the alternatives to Linux, it is likely that this someone probably will come from an Microsoft Windows networking background, particularly if they are employed in the IT world.

3. Given 1 plus 2 above, then that person needs to learn the language and terms used in the new Linux environment and will by nature use familiar terms for reference. The important clue here is the 'individual's current terms of reference'.

Therefore, would it not make sense that our mythical GUI tool should speak their language? Here's an example of someone who came from a Microsoft Windows NT networking background and discuss the key needs and requirements. Let's say I know MS Windows NT/2K/XP/.Net and wants to get a Linux server up and running quickly.

Here are my starter questions:

There are Comments. Add yours.

 
TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to: