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Sunday, November 07, 2010

Fedora 14 and Windows Networking. (Samba/Netbios/smb)

I wanted to be able to browser and connect to my windows network from the fedora machine.  Here are the hoops I went through to get this working in FC14. Below I only detail how to setup samba to allow connectivity and browsing of windows boxes from linux. I do not detail how to setup smb shares on linux box to allow windows servers to connect to linux.

Install samba

I installed samba in the add/remove software gui.

  • “Server and Client software to interoperate with Windows Machines”
  • “Files used by both Samba servers and clients”
  • ”Documentation for the Samba suite”

all for version samba-3.5.6-69.fc14.

Configure Samba. (etc/samba/smb.conf)

Open smb.conf for editing and change/add the following lines

  • workgroup = <your workgroup>
  • netbios name = <the name of you linux box>
  • name resolve order = bcast hosts lmhosts wins

The name resolve order is important, I did not have a wins env and wanted to allow the broadcast method to resolve machine names. Without the bcast entry you will be unable to browse the windows Network. I was getting “Unable to Mount”/”failed to retrieve server list” until this entry was added. What I faound was that I was able to directly enter ip addresses into Nautilus and connect to windows servers, however actual machine names would not resolve.

Configure the firewall (ensure you apply)

  • System\Administration\Firewall
    • Allow the samba services client and server.

WinBind (not needed but mentioned for clarity)

It must be noted here that there is an additional service windbind, that can allow you to integrate into a windows domain and authenticate againt the users in that domain on the linux box. I was only using this within a home env with no PDC so had no need for this. I include here incase you are heading that way, you will need to look into this.

Other utilities I installed

It must also be said I installed a couple of other utilities to help me along the way.

system-config-services 0.99.47-1.fc14
services viewer (actually views daemons), an interface like windows services.



  1. If you have SE Linux enabled (default for me) you will need to run, in a terminal window:

    su -c "setsebool -P samba_export_all_rw 1"


    su -c "setsebool -P samba_create_home_dirs 1"

    Hope this helps (your blog did!)

  2. thanks for the tutorial! :)
    just a note: I just realized that if you want to make your shares browsable, you need to start nmb daemon. Hope it helps someone, I just spent some time figuring that one out :/

  3. Thanks for that.
    I've got to the point you had in the middle, I can browse a windows machine (there is only one) with Dolphin by putting in the IP address, but not with the name.

    Surprisingly (?) the network section in Dolphin shows me the name of the computer, but won't connect.

    I've applied your name resolve order change, but it still don't work :-(


  4. Hi Mark, all I can suggest is that you try enabling the nmb daemon as camypaj suggests. I have not touched unix since doing this so it is now quite hazy in the old memory banks. Also have you entered the bcast entry in the smb.conf?

  5. Thanks for that!

    This is rely much easier on Ubuntu. Works out of the box. But on my Netbook Fedora is nicer to my battery and sleep-mode works.

    Thank you again!

  6. Thanks for sharing your ideas and thoughts, i like your blog and bookmark this blog for further use thanks again… Windows Network Setup

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