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# 1  
Mapping drive

please forgive me. i know this is unix forum.

CIFS can map to shared windows folder.

i just wonder if windows can map to unix shared folder.

if yes, please enlight me...
# 2  
What kind of "UNIX shared folder"? What kind of UNIX? Many kinds of UNIX can export and import CIFS shares these days.

Windows also has limited support for some kinds of NFS if I recall, if you install the right features on a Server version of Windows, though NFS is less than ideal both UNIX and Windows alike.
# 3  
(might be technicly incorrect, but should help to understand the general behaviour)

When using discs on other machines (which both a NAS/SAN or any kind of server is) then its up to that machine wether it can 'read' the filesystem on its very own (local) disc.

When you access the drive of that machine, you are using the (i dont know proper term, so i call it) network protocol CIFS.
Meaning, the server is reading localy its files from... ext4/ntfs/hps/whatever... and sends it as CIFS to the machine you are using.
So then, the partition of the servers discs appears on your local system, and when you check, it says its filesystem is CIFS.
That is a 'layer' which then translates your actions to the filesystem actualy used for that disc on the server.

Hope this helps
# 4  
AIX6.1 and 7.1
# 5  
Using NFS on any unix/linux variant as a server (sharing the directory) and windows 7 or later as NFS client works quite well.

You will need to enable the "Client for NFS" on your windows machine.

Couple of cavecats include...

1. User name mapping - you can map one GID/UID to user in Windows registry, or use domain (i have no experience or need with the second choice, using first.)

2. Bugs, of course Smilie

For example if you have 2 NFS shares on server shared to your Windows client:

/customer1/pdf/input
/customer2/pdf/input

You map the drivers on letter you want persistently on the client using Add network drive or command line.

After reboot (or relog), only one share will be mounted automatically, due to some bug related to the last part of path being the same (input).

My workaround for this is to have one bat file which mounts shares with PERSISTENT NO option, which can be invoked manual or automatic during startup (be sure to setup it to run last after all the other services are up).


Hope that helps
Regards
Peasant.
# 6  
Quote:
Originally Posted by sea
When you access the drive of that machine, you are using the (i dont know proper term, so i call it) network protocol CIFS.
Meaning, the server is reading localy its files from... ext4/ntfs/hps/whatever... and sends it as CIFS to the machine you are using.
So then, the partition of the servers discs appears on your local system, and when you check, it says its filesystem is CIFS.
That is a 'layer' which then translates your actions to the filesystem actualy used for that disc on the server.
Close, but not quite. Here is the story:

Most network protocol stacks have provisions for sharing data over the network. Notice: "sharing", not "transmitting" - of course networks are all about data transmission, but this is a special form of transmission. It means making a certain set of data accessible by several hosts on the network. Because protocol stacks are layered this mechanism is usually implemented as a special protocol on a certain layer.

So far, so theoretical. Let us look at real existing network stacks, namely TCP/IP and NetBIOS.

First, TCP/IP: at the lowest layer there is (mainly - i leave out many details here) IP, which does the transporting. On top of IP there are several protocols but by far the most important ones are UDP and TCP. UDP is a fast and connectionless protocol and its use is on a steady decline (with fast networks you don't need fast protocols any more - "fast" here means "squeezing out every ounce of bandwidth available"), while most services use TCP nowadays. One of these services - a protocol in itself - is NFS, "Network File System". Versions 1 and 2 built on UDP, version 3 could use both, TCP and UDP, version 4 uses TCP only.

So far, this is the TCP/IP way of sharing file(-systems) over the network. Because UNIX and TCP/IP developed together it is oftenly believed that NFS is some UNIX thing, but this isn't the case. In fact NFS is the protocol in the TCP/IP protocol stack to do file sharing. That it integrates with UNIX so well is because UNIX is built to integrate with TCP/IP so tightly.

When Windows was patched into offering some rudimentary network support it was decided that the protocol stack to be used was the one from the LAN-Manager server OS: NetBIOS. NetBIOS is radically different from TCP/IP but most services in TCP/IP have some more or less similar service in NetBIOS. This is also the case with file sharing and the protocol to do so is called SMB - "Server Message Block". This protocol is used between Windows systems to "map network drives" as their lingo is for what UNIX people call "mounting (network) filesystems". These thing work on different protocols (and in fact are different in detail) but effectively these are equivalent services.

NetBIOS has many drawbacks which steeply increase with networks getting bigger and bigger (for one, NetBIOS builds heavily on broadcasts and the more stations you have on a network the more bandwidth is eaten by these). This - and because the big servers on most networks were UNIX and VAX, which both spoke TCP/IP - brough Microsoft to finally adopt TCP/IP as their protocol. You might remember the "we, M$$, are in fact the internet"-hype when NT finally used TCP/IP.

But when Microsoft touted their OS as "internet-ready", "internet-driven" or whatever they called it, that was a half-lie: what they called TCP/IP in fact wasn't TCP/IP really but a protocol hybrid, which was called (not entirely correctly) NetBEUI (NetBIOS Extended User Interface) or "RFC 1001" / "RFC 1002", after the RFC documents which described it: they used TCP packets to transport normal NetBIOS packets from one station to the other. All the communication between systems were still done in NetBIOS but now the NetBIOS packages were packed into TCP packets for the transport. Therefore they still did use the old SMB protocol for sharing files (map network drives), but the SMB-packets now where in a NetBIOS-datastream which was packaged into TCP frames which where then transported via IP.

Soon people began to ask where the (native) TCP/IP support in these "built-on-internet-technology"-systems was. Because the TCP/IP was only used for the transport of NetBIOS packets most fo the protocol stack was missing. Microsoft invented "Microsoft UNIX services for Windows". The naming was quite typical for Microsoft because this had nothing at all to do with UNIX: it was simply the missing part of the TCP/IP protocol stack they claimed to be using already. But because only a few did install this on their NT servers (and even less on the clients) one needed a way to connect UNiX systems to NT (XP, ...) systems. There were products invented to implement the SMB protocol over the RFC1001/1002 transport mechanism and the perhaps best-known is "Samba" (the name references the SMB protocol).

So there was a way to mount UNIX-exported files on Windows machines - MS UNIX services for Windows and mount as an NFS client - and Windows-exported files on a UNIX machine: use Samba to map an SMB-share.

You may ask where CIFS finally comes in, after all this history. Well, in fact CIFS is just a (renamed) version of SMB with a few extensions to integrate into Kerberos-secured LDAP domains (this, in fact - LDAP, dumbed down a bit and using Kerberos for authentication - is Microsofts "Active Directory", which is a all-new-invented internet standard - save for the fact that the one part is a 30-years-old invention from MIT and the other is a 20-year-old open standard).

I hope this helps.

bakunin

/PS: @Thread-opener: Yes, there is CIFS-support for AIX 6.1 and 7.1. We have that in use, but i can give you details only on Monday, when i am back in office. Post here if you have specific questions regarding this.
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