This is a little samba guide from my own experiences of how to map a network drive under windows 2000 to a Linux server. I am not technical expert and this guide is the result from my trail and error.

What's Samba?

Samba allows Linux computers to share files and printers across a network connection. By using its SMB protocol, your Linux box can appear in Windows Network Neighborhood or My Network Places just like any other windows machine. You can share files this way, as well as printers. By using samba on my home network, for example, my Windows machines have access to a printer directly hooked up to my Linux box, and my Linux box has access to a printer directly hooked up to one of my Windows machines. In addition, everyone can access everyone else's shared files. You can see how samba can be very useful if you have a network of both Windows as well as Linux machines.

My OSs

Windows 2000
RHEL 3 (Redhat Enterprise Linus)

My goal

Map a network drive to Linux servers, so that I can access the Linux files under windows 2000.


Most Linux should have Samba already installed. But if it hasn't install, you can find at in or using up2date command "up2date -i samba". You can also get it at

Then you can install it by tying the following Command:


rpm -i samba.rpm


rpm -U samba.rpm


Samba conf file is located at /etc/samba/smb.conf, allows you to specify which resources on the Linux machine you wish to share and who they can be accessed by.

Samba provide a full version conf if it's fresh install. But most of the times, we don't really need all of these options. So I provide my own conf here, which is rather simple, but it makes things work.

workgroup = WORKGROUP
server string = LinuxBOX
hosts allow = your_windows_machine_IP
log file = /var/log/samba/%m.log
security = user
encrypt passwords = yes
smb passwd file = /etc/samba/smbpasswd
socket options = TCP_NODELAY SO_RCVBUF=8192 SO_SNDBUF=8192

comment = Downloads
path = /path_to_your_sharefolder
browseable = yes
writable = yes
public = yes
read only = no

comment = My Home Directory
browseable = yes
writable = yes
public = yes
read only = no

path = /var/spool/samba
public = yes
guest ok = yes
printable = yes
browseable = yes
writable = yes
read only = no

Just replace workgroup to your windows workgroup name, your_windows_machine_IP and /path_to_your_sharefolder. If you don't need printers sharing, you don't need to have printer section.

Setup Samba Users

Since we're using user level security, we need to setup samba users. This can be easily done by using Webmin. You can go to Server --> Samba --> Convert Unix users to Samba users, you can just covert all your existing Linux users and set them password under the icon "Edit Samba users and passwords" later.

If you don't use webmin, you can also type the following command:

cat /etc/passwd | > /etc/samba/smbpasswd

smbpasswd username

Replace username with each of your user's usernames. You will then be prompted to enter a password for this user account.

Samba Service

Now, it's time to start your samba server:

service smb start
service smb stop
service smb restart

Once the computer is restarted or shutdown, the samba service won't start up again in next boot up. I use webmin to make it startup at boot time.

Windows 2000 Configuration

1. Under windows 2000, you can got to windows explorer --> Tools --> map a network drive
2. select drive letter
3. enter the path (e.g. \\your_server_ip\Downloads)
4. click connect using different user name
5. enter your samba usernaem and password that you just set
6. You can connect to your Linux machine now!

This method work for me. If there is any correction or improvements, please let me know.