samba , netbios , and NFS ?

Discussion in 'Computing and Networks' started by Mathematics!, Dec 13, 2011.

  1. Mathematics!

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    Jul 21, 2008
    I am curious about what the difference is between these protocals or services.

    I know on windows machines netbios is a service that allows you to file share with other netbios enabled machine. As well as create null session , and do remote rcp calls , start and stop service remotely ,...etc

    I know samba is the linux equivalent to netbios which allows a linux based machine to communicate with netbios windows based machines for file sharing....etc

    What I don't get is what is NFS (network file system)?
    Where would you use this instead of samba or netbios?
    What is it's purpose?
    And what can it do that samba or netbios cann't?
  2. joeyd999

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 6, 2011
    You are mistaken about NetBios. Window file sharing uses SMB (Server Message Block) also known as CIFS (Common Internet File System). SMB can run on top of NetBios or directly on TCP/IP.

    Samba is a free software implementation (reverse engineered*) of SMB/CIFS. The SaMBa name is derived from the letters SMB.

    NFS is the Unix file sharing system. It was developed about a year before SMB. It is still supported by all *nix flavors, but I don't believe it is supported by Windows, at least not natively.

    NFS does not support browseable hosts, I believe, so to make connections, you need to know the hosts name or address in advance. This is in contrast to SMB which is more of an ad hoc nature.

    Once the connection is made, though, there is little difference between SMB and NFS at the application layer.

    Most Windows and heterogeneous networks, and many *nix only networks, are pretty much entirely SMB these days.

    *It seems that Microsoft likes to keep moving the goal post with respect to their proprietary, secret specification of SMB. This has the tendency to break heterogeneous SMB networks occasionally. Many believe this is on purpose so as to make it difficult to use SMB with non-MS systems. Luckily, the folks at Samba are quick to discover and incorporate changes so as to make SMB networking in heterogeneous networks stable.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2011
  3. Mathematics!

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    Jul 21, 2008
    Ok , my mistake on that.

    Curious is NFS slowly dying out and SAMBA taking NFS's place on *inx based systems?
    Or is their still a reason for NFS other then legacy reasons?

    Facts samba came out in 1992/1993 ish area and is still being developed on....
    NFS came out in 1984 but I am not sure if it is still in active development?

    SMB=CIFS and is what microsoft uses for file sharing over netbios or tcp/ip.
    SMB/CIFS is compatible with SAMBA which makes SAMBA and SMB/CIFS the protocals that unite all *inx and windows based file sharing systems Correct.
  4. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    See my rant in your other thread.

    All will be clear, but you will be confused for a bit. Just keep asking questions.

    You have no idea how painful it is to get Cisco certified and Microsoft certified and a linux developer. It's like being an ordaned catholic (Cisco) and a practicing wiccan (M$) at the same time.

    Close enough to correct for practical use.
  5. Mathematics!

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    Jul 21, 2008
    Is it possible to get any of the specifications /protocol spec's for any of the following.
    1) netbios
    2) smb/cifs
    3) active directories
    4) LDAP
    5) samba
    6) NFS

    I am thinking maybe only 4 , 5 ,6 (open sourced) or may have some spec that explains in detail.
  6. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    Google "RFC Repository", it will tell you everything you need to know about the Internet and protocols.

    I used to host one, but got tired of updating it for the low traffic it received. There are megabytes of text of good info.