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I did a netinstall of etch on my AMD64 machine a while back and chose the basic desktop option. After installation, the Linux machine could see and access the Windows machines but could not work their printers. The Windows machines could see the Linux box but not log on even with no firewalls.
I'm still trying different flavors of Linux to find the one right for me and in trying CentOS 5.0 I was wondering if I had found the answer to my etch problems (I might go back). Namely, CentOS 5.0 let's you set up the machine as a samba server during installation. When I did the etch desktop configuration it didn't. Is it possible that things didn't work because all of the machines were clients and none was a server? Right now, with CentOS everything is working perfectly, network printers, everything.
I still like some of the aspects of Debian and, as I said earlier, I'm still trying out different distributions before I commit.
When I did the etch netinstall I didn't (and don't) want any of the other servers. If I do a netinstall again and select "Server" for the configuration option, can I un-install all of the other servers (e.g., the web server etc.) later? Or would I have to go the 14 CD route to get that degree of precision? Believe me, I installed everything Synaptic had to offer under "samba" the last time, with poor results.