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I am having a very annoying problem that I am sure has a very simple solution, but I cannot seem to figure this out. I have spent about a week trying to figure this out, searching through endless forum and documentation sources. But I continue to have the same problem.
Here is what I am trying to do...
I have a network at our office of about 30 Windows workstations. They are all on a simple workgroup. I am not running any domains. We are a very small company and I am not a network administrator, so I want to try to keep this as simple as possible. We just bought a new server with no OS. The main use of the new server is to run a large file sharing repository for the company with local network and VPN access. The VPN is handled by our router/firewall. I want to have one directory on the server that has full access permissions to everybody in the company to read, write, and change files as needed.
In order to keep cost low, I decided to try out Linux to run the server. I could do it with Windows XP, but as far as I know, that would be incredibly inefficient because XP is not designed to be run as a server. However, the problem is that I am completely new to Linux so I am really struggling here.
I have figured out that I am supposed to use Samba for windows networking. I have played with the settings quite a bit to get Samba to work with our network and I am able to connect to the server and read files. However, I cannot write or change anything. It keeps telling me that I do not have the correct permissions. I have changed just about every setting I can think of in the smb.conf file to no avail. I set the permissions to 777 on the shared directory in Linux and it still does not work.
I have actually tried this on three different distributions (Fedora, SUSE, and Ubuntu) and two completely different sets of computers and networks (office and home) and I get the same result in every situation. So this tells me there is noting wrong with the OS or hardware but something that I am doing wrong in the configuration.
As part of my troubleshooting process, I completely turned off the firewalls on both ends and I still get the same problem. I changed my network settings from DHCP to manually setting my IP address and settings; no change. I tried creating specific users and groups just for file sharing and changing the ownership of the fileshare directory to that group; no change. I tried sharing a directory in the root level (/fileshare) and in the home directory (/home/samba/fileshare); no change. I just do not know what else to try.
Within the smb.conf file I have tried public = yes, writable = yes, browseable = yes, create mask, force user, force group and just about anything else you can think of. Still no change.
Can you think of any simple step I may be missing? Are Samba permissions only handled within the smb.conf file or is there somewhere else that I need to set up access permissions as well?
This is a critical feature of our new server and I am afraid I may have to give up on Linux altogether if I cannot make this work. I would hate to revert back to Windows.
Do you have any ideas how I may come to a solution to this problem?
Sorry for the long post but I wanted to be as detailed as possible. I am also sorry if this specific issue has already been dealt with in this forum. If so, a link to the previously posted solution would be an incredible help, considering I have already done extensive searching and could not find the solution.
Your distros should also include a pdf or postscript version of the "Samba 3 by Example" book. Either as part of the regular package or from a samba-doc package.
Look in /usr/share/doc/packages/ for a samba or samba3 directory. It sounds like either you need to add the default user as a samba user or you need to change the permissions of the directory that you wish to share. There are two very similar examples in the book that you could use for a model.