Q

Your Unix or Linux server can't see Windows shared drives? Try Samba!

I have a lab at home that includes HP/UX, AIX, Solaris on Intel, Linux and Windows (98 & 2000). The AIX and HP/UX

servers have a tape drive that I would like to use as a network backup device (via NFS or RSH or other protocal). On Win98, I was able to use a NFS shareware package and have the Unix server "see" the Windows 98 shared drive(s). The problem is with Windows 2000. I can't find a shareware NFS package to do the same. I realize that there is third party packages, such as Hummingbird, but I'd like to keep the lab cost down to the bare minimum.

The bottom line is this: Do you have any suggestion that will allow 'all'system to see or communicate with the tape unit on the Unix box?


Instead of driving yourself nuts with NFS on PCs, why not look at Samba? It is open source and free and is a good solution for PC/Unix integration. I have used it before (it is very popular), and it is a nice clean way of accessing Unix servers from PCs. Using this solution, you'll only have to load software on the Unix box, not on any of your PCs. See their url: http://us1.samba.org/samba/samba.html.

They have a nice little description of Samba on their site:

What is Samba?

"The very short answer is that it is the protocol by which a lot of PC-related machines share files and printers and other information such as lists of available files and printers. Operating systems that support this natively include Windows NT, OS/2, and Linux and add on packages that achieve the same thing are available for DOS, Windows, VMS, Unix of all kinds, MVS, and more. Apple Macs and some Web Browsers can speak this protocol as well. Alternatives to SMB include Netware, NFS, Appletalk, Banyan Vines, Decnet etc; many of these have advantages but none are both public specifications and widely implemented in desktop machines by default."

By the way, sounds like a great lab you're putting together, though I would try to dump the Solaris on Intel and get a used SPARC for a couple hundred bucks instead. The future of Solaris on Intel is suspect at best.

Good luck!


This was first published in May 2002

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