GNOME uses a virtual file system to mount remote shares, like Samba and NFS. The shares appear in any GNOME-based GVFS aware application (and those that use Nautilus as the file chooser), but with others like Thunderbird they do not. Someone on the Fedora list recently needed to attach a file from a remote share, but couldn’t.
I then discovered (thanks to a knowledgeable responder) that you can browse to these shares directly (no need to manually mount them) via the hidden .gvfs directory in your home, which means that if you access them no-matter what program you’re using (yes, even KDE apps), i.e.
Jeremy Allison has spoken up about Mono, Novell’s implementation of Microsoft’s heavily patented .NET platform. He recommends that it be put into “restricted” repositories until the licensing issues can be sorted out.
Mono is controversial as it is a re-implementation of Microsoft’s .NET technology, in much the same way as Samba is a re-implementation of Microsoft’s Server Message Block (SMB) file sharing protocol. The genesis of each project and how they have developed over the years is somewhat different however…
But my basic issue with the Microsoft Community Promise is that Miguel doesn’t have to depend on it like everyone else does. Miguel’s employer, Novell, has a patent agreement with Microsoft that exempts Mono users from Microsoft patent aggression, so long as you get Mono from Novell. Miguel takes pains to point this out. This is not a level playing field, or software freedom for all. This is a preferred supplier trying to pretend there is no problem. Sure there isn’t a problem, for them. If it isn’t good enough for Miguel, why is it good enough for other developers?
If .NET is not a risk to free software, then why did Novell get patent cover from Microsoft for their clients?
Had Novell arranged a royalty-free agreement with Microsoft for everyone (and not just their clients) like Andrew Tridgell did for Samba, then Mono would not be a problem.
Of course, once software patents come crumbling down this won’t be an issue at all. Until then it is wise to play safe..
A few months ago Tridge demonstrated Samba4 to Samba4 replication and now this goes one step further for real world use. Andrew Bartlett has just blogged about the Samba team’s recent efforts in Redmond working with Microsoft to get a Windows Server 2008 R2 machine to replicate a Samba4 server.
As the days and nights dragged on, greater progress began, and the Windows 2008 R2 server being joined progressively accepted more and more data from Samba4. But just as things looked bright, another failure would rob us of victory, and Hongwei would be sent another trace to analyse…
But as the final minutes arrived, there was time for one final run… Cameras were at the ready, as we waited impatiently for the Windows DC to join, and it was with total shock that, with 15 seconds to spare (and tridge’s taxi no doubt already waiting), the Windows domain controller joined.
This was the first time that Samba4 had hosted an AD domain that a Windows DC found sufficiently acceptable to replicate the whole directory, and be comfortable to set itself up as a peer domain controller.
With this (after some refinement), we will be able to show Samba4 as a viable option to be peer domain controller in any AD domain, able to host such domains alone or in partnership with Microsoft’s Windows.
Great work Samba team, you are amazing!