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Huh, I completely confused by others editing my post... breaking all system of referencing and linking into a mess...

Bifurcating the question (1)

Can anybody share experience and/or links on running Samba Linux Active Directory Server, like in "Samba 4: Linux Active Directory Server", on Windows workstation (like XP Pro)?

What are pro and contra of using Cygwin vs. running Linux in virtual machine for this?

jscott wrote in question(1): "Windows, specifically its licensing philosophy, is quite antithetical to the ideals of the GPL".

I could not get: what are the problems of running GPL applications on Windows?

Besides, ComputerWorld tells us:

  • "Bartlett said the Samba team now has a good relationship with Microsoft and the password bug was never in any of its documentation so "they never thought it existed". Microsoft has also provided a copy of its AD schema which can be worked around by the Samba team"

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Edit1 (concerning XP Eula):

I forked the issues of ethical use of Windows Xp as server to question http://serverfault.com/questions/168363/windows-xp-used-as-server

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I suppose the ethical problem of running a Samba server on Windows is because of the CAL in Win Server or maximum inbound connections limit in XP EULA (5 for Home and 10 for Pro) and Samba has no limit so you have legally limited connections to access the machine running a free unlimited software but as far as I understand, there is nothing disallowing this in GPL, Samba or MS Eula provided you respect the Eula's limits. –  laurent Aug 9 '10 at 4:37
    
The article about Samba AD is about Samba 4 wich is not released yet (and will take some more time as I think it is in alpha) and Samba 3 alone is not a full replacement for AD. –  laurent Aug 9 '10 at 4:45
    
See my Edit1 in original post –  Gennady Vanin Novosibirsk Aug 9 '10 at 6:25
    
I would be shocked if anyone's running Samba 4 on Windows XP, unless it's as a VM guest on a different operating system. –  nedm Aug 9 '10 at 6:31
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So, " Samba team now has a good relationship with Microsoft" only for ousting Samba outside of Windows realm? What is the sense in it? –  Gennady Vanin Novosibirsk Aug 9 '10 at 6:45
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3 Answers

I would certainly use samba in its native environment: a linux VM inside Virtualbox or Vmware.

It's surely more mature and tested : ample userbase, more documentation , etc. Of course one of the best starting points is samba site itsself

There are absolutley no (legal) problems on running GPL software on windows , some people object it for "ethical" reasons just becacuse it would not be a completely "Free" (as in speech) environment.

I would not recommend a Windows xp OS as a production enviroment for the domain hosted by samba but it's sureley great for testing and prototyping

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There are a very few hits on this, none recent:

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Using Samba under cygwin is going to be much more hassle than it's worth. Dedicating 1 box to a simple Linux setup will be a much easier solution; several distros even allow you to check-to-install and configure a samba DC during the initial setup.

Again, per your previous question, this is basically for a small number of XP workstations for which you'd like to have single sign-on, yes? As was pointed out there, for a large number of users things like WSUS and real Group Policy are must-haves. However, for 2-5 workstations Automatic Updates and a quick sit-down at each desk should be sufficient. If you don't want to pay for a Windows Server, Samba on Linux is likely to get you what you need in a small environment. If you're willing to take the time to figure out a flaky install on cygwin you'd be better served learning how to run a solid install on Linux or FreeBSD.

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It is really for developing on one physical computer which RAM does not permit (to some harfware quirks) more than 2GB –  Gennady Vanin Novosibirsk Aug 9 '10 at 5:22
    
For development purposes, you could get away with Samba on a VirtualBox guest with very little RAM allocated. 512 MB would be plenty for an Ubuntu guest with Samba3 installed, especially with so few clients. You could even start with 256 MB and see if it's not too painful. Again, this is going to treat you nicer than Samba on cygwin ever will. –  nedm Aug 9 '10 at 5:49
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