Can Linux and Windows be friends?

I made them dance together yesterday. They danced Samba.

Essentially, it allowed my gentoo box to share a few directories over microsoft networks and to mount windows network drives onto the gentoo box.

It also allowed a very happy me to log into the gentoo box remotely, mount a drive from a computer in the remote LAN and download a photoshop file I had forgottent to take with me.

This is cool. Computers on the LAN are now accessible remote.

EEEK!

What’s that saying about security?

Basically, I think I’m no less secure than I was before – if I someone could’ve hacked themselves into the root account, they could’ve easily installed samba and most likely gain access to the other computers on the lan.

Well, as long as I remember to unmount the drives when I’m finished, it’s as safe as it was – you’d need the usernames and password of the other machines to mount drives.

Sheesh. How paranoid must you be in order to be a security expert? I’m merely dabbling in the stuff and I already suspect my grandmother to be working with the ennemy

3 thoughts on “Can Linux and Windows be friends?

  1. To access remote SMB shares, you can also spawn `smbclient` which offers a FTP-like client. Quicker than a full mount/umount cycle when you only want a handful of files.

    So you don’t need root access on your GNU/Linux box to fetch data from your Win shares, only a regular user account.

  2. You can make a volume user-mountable by adding "user" in the options field of a mountpoint inside /etc/fstab. See `man 8 mount` and `man 5 fstab`. Pretty useful for removable media like DVDs/CDROMs.

    Speaking of mounting, there are a couple of clever tricks one can do with minimal configuration, like mounting a remote ftp server so it becomes "part" of the local filesystem, all network transactions becoming transparent.

    There is even a way to create a "magical" directory, let’s say, "/mnt/magic/ftp" where you can automagically mount remote ftp servers:
    cd /mnt/magic/ftp/ftp.download.com/
    ls
    # hey this is cool stuff!

    These tricks use lufs and autofs:
    lufs.sourceforge.net/lufs…

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