Chapter 5. Unix Clients

In Chapter 3 we showed you how to configure Windows systems to access shared resources on both Windows and Samba servers. This has probably opened up a whole new world of computing for you—one in which you have to run to a Windows system every time you want to copy a file between Unix and Windows! In this chapter, we will show you the “other side”—how to access SMB shares from your favorite Unix system.

You can access SMB resources from Unix in three ways, depending on your version of Unix. A program included with the Samba distribution called smbclient can be used to connect with a share on the network in a manner similar to using ftp when transferring files to or from an FTP site.

If your system is running Linux, you can use the smbfs filesystem to mount SMB shares right onto your Linux filesystem, just as you would mount a disk partition or NFS filesystem. The SMB shares can then be accessed and manipulated by all programs running on the Linux system: command shells, desktop GUI interfaces, and application software.

On some BSD-based systems, including Mac OS X, a pair of utilities named smbutil and mount_smbfs can be used to query SMB servers and mount shares.

For other Unix variants, smbsh can be run to enable common shell commands such as cd, ls, mv, wc, and grep to access and manipulate files and directories on SMB shares. This effectively extends the reach of the Unix shell and utilities beyond the Unix filesystem and into the SMB network.

All the Unix ...

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