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Currently we are using Samba on a Linux box on our LAN to provide file storage to a dozen or so local Windows, Linux and Mac clients. We now need remote access to these Samba shares from Windows clients.

I've found many solutions, but none seem to fit. Here's why:

1.) Samba over a tunnelled SSH connection using Putty/OpenSSH for Windows isn't suitable because we won't always be able to set up the machines ourselves, but will need to give others instructions on how to connect, and this solution is too complex to instruct them on.

2.) SFTP with a disabled shell and chroot'd to the Samba share directory is simple and pretty secure, but it isn't suitable as it doesn't provide us with enough control over user permissions.

3.) Simply using the Linux box as a Primary Domain Controller and directly connecting from Windows isn't suitable as any new machine who wants to connect needs to be physically set up by us, as you have to connect to the domain with the root account, which we cannot just give out to people.#

4.) Setting up a VPN on the LAN such as OpenVPN seems overkill for a simple fileshare, and would require a considerable piece of software to be installed for every user who wants to connect.

Ideally we want to be able to send out a quick email to people with easy instructions on how to connect - SFTP is the only one that fits that bill, but it just doesn't give us enough control.

Are they any other methods I've missed out? I'm actually amazed that I can't find a commercial solution with a pretty little GUI that tunnels a Samba share over SSH and mount it as a Windows drive.

Thanks in advance.

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1 Answer

SFTP + Winbind? It will let the users log in as their domain user via SSH and thus SFTP, and get the right permissions.

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