Warning: rant ahead

Someone decided that doing a Windows-specific protocol would be a good idea. Whoever this person is, I hope he rots in hell. But that's not what this post is about.

Someone else decided that doing a free software implementation of that Windows-specific protocol would be a good idea. Hence samba was born. And all was good.

For the next few years, Samba kept implementing more and more features of that particular Windows-specific protocol, which kept getting changed and renamed over the years. Originally, samba could just export files, and you could specify whether users could or could not write to your files. Perhaps it already had passwords at that point—not sure. Later, usernames were added, and the ability to join a Windows domain, and then another type of Windows domain, and eventually a number of other differently deficient difficulties.

As these things were implemented, the ways of configuring samba to properly do all these things was made more and more complex, to the point where it now no longer seems possible to install samba without major repercussions on the 'plain' Linux installation. A bit like having an apache requiring you to add apache-specific usernames through an apache-specific NSS module (winbind anyone?) just so you could export ACLs. Oh, and forget about retaining your existing usernames.

Now I'm not sure whether this is related to a) me having tried winbind at some point in the past, deciding that I didn't like the effects it had, and removing it again (with as a result that it left some traces on the system), b) the system being joined to an ADS domain which might have some special requirements, or c) this particular system having a bit of a weird history that might have fucked up some of the internal state files of samba; but at any rate, it sucks.

It seems to me that somehow, over the years, samba has lost the ability to just function as a minor something that just happens to be one service on a machine—much like apache on my laptop—and now requires one to do a complete overhaul of the entire system. That's just stupid; I am not going to migrate users to their winbind counterparts, thankyouverymuch.

Stupid ********

Of course, though unlikely, it's not impossible that I've missed something. But at any rate, even if that is the case, the hoops one needs to jump through to get to the above situations are far too numerous and complex.