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Samba Open Source Domain Controller (DC)

What is Samba DC?

Samba is open source software, from the SMB network protocol. It was originally developed by Andrew Tridgell. Samba provides file and print services for multiple Microsoft Windows clients and can integrate with a Microsoft Windows Server domain, either as a domain controller (DC) or as a domain member. Starting with version 4, it supports Active Directory and Microsoft Windows NT domains.

Samba runs on most Unix, OpenVMS, and Unix-like systems such as Linux, Solaris, AIX, and BSD variants, including Apple's macOS server and macOS client (Mac OS X 10.2 and higher). Samba is standard on almost all Linux distributions and is also commonly included as a basic system service in other Unix-based operating systems. Samba is released under the terms of the GNU General Public License. The name Samba comes from SMB (Server Message Block), the standard protocol name used by the Microsoft Windows network file system.


Samba allows file and print sharing between Microsoft Windows computers and Unix computers. It is an implementation of dozens of services and a dozen protocols, including:

  • NetBIOS over TCP/IP (NBT)
  • SMB (known as CIFS in some versions)
  • Samba supports POSIX extensions for CIFS / SMB. The initial extension was CIFS VFS (CAP_UNIX) from 2004, which has been replaced by SMB3.
  • DCE / RPC or more specifically, MSRPC, the Network Neighborhood suite of protocols
  • A WINS server also known as NetBIOS Name Server (NBNS)
  • The set of NT Domain protocols that includes NT Domain Logons
  • Security Account Manager (SAM) database
  • Service of the Local Security Authority (LSA)
  • NT Style Printing Service (SPOOLSS)
  • NTLM
  • Active Directory login with modified versions of Kerberos and LDAP
  • DFS server

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