SOLVED: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

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DarkReader
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SOLVED: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

I have spent weeks poking around here and elsewhere following links, trying to figure out how to share files between up to three computers: one desktop running Cinnamon 19, one has XFCE 19, and a laptop with Cinnamon 17-something.

All I want is to be able to copy/move files from one unit to another. I don't need printer sharing, my goal is to use one computer as a repository/backup of our data from the other two. I have tried methods recommended here for both file sharing and networking. The problem every time has been that I get to what appears to be the last step and have no idea what that step means or how to execute it. I don't even remember all the things I have tried.

So:

What is the best (here, a word meaning "complete steps") to achieve this goal? I don't care what it's called, maybe they're the same thing. I can follow instructions, I just need some that don't gloss over a step that may be clear to a more advanced user. It's a flaw in my character.

Thank you in advance for any help or links to directions. All suggestions welcomed.
Last edited by DarkReader on Mon Nov 05, 2018 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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lsemmens
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by lsemmens »

Rather than vague Cinnamon 17 something, statements, Please post the output of the "inxi -Fzxd" command as requested in the How to get help link at the top of every page. You will need to do that for each computer, unless they are all running IDENTICAL versions of Linux. Cinnamon19 and XFCE have different sharing requirements, I'm not familiar enough with Cinnamon 17 to comment there, Someone with more networking experience will be along shortly.
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by AscLinux »

NFS allows you to share directories across networks. Not sure if there is any GUI to set it up. Note: NFS identifies users by UID and GID, not username.
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

Although this may come as a shock to some users Samba is the default file server for Ubuntu and all of it's derivatives and forks like Mint so I'm guessing you started with that first. Changes made in Ubuntu 18.04 has made this fairly seamless - at least in an all Linux network.
my goal is to use one computer as a repository/backup of our data from the other two.
From the machine you designated as the "backup" machine please post the output of the following commands:

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hostname

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hostname -I

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testparm -s

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net usershare info --long
And please tell us what version of Mint ( 17 , 19 .. ) and what Desktop ( Cinnamon, XFCE, MATE .. ) you are running of this "backup" machine.
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

Thank you for replying. Following are the outputs you requested, apologies if I've added them incorrectly.

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hostname
darlynne-OptiPlex-780

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hostname -I
192.168.1.7

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testparm -s
Load smb config files from /etc/samba/smb.conf
rlimit_max: increasing rlimit_max (1024) to minimum Windows limit (16384)
WARNING: The "syslog" option is deprecated
Processing section "[printers]"
Processing section "[print$]"
Loaded services file OK.
WARNING: The 'netbios name' is too long (max. 15 chars).

Server role: ROLE_STANDALONE

# Global parameters
[global]
	dns proxy = No
	log file = /var/log/samba/log.%m
	map to guest = Bad User
	max log size = 1000
	obey pam restrictions = Yes
	pam password change = Yes
	panic action = /usr/share/samba/panic-action %d
	passwd chat = *Enter\snew\s*\spassword:* %n\n *Retype\snew\s*\spassword:* %n\n *password\supdated\ssuccessfully* .
	passwd program = /usr/bin/passwd %u
	server role = standalone server
	server string = %h server (Samba, Ubuntu)
	syslog = 0
	unix password sync = Yes
	usershare allow guests = Yes
	idmap config * : backend = tdb

[printers]
	browseable = No
	comment = All Printers
	create mask = 0700
	path = /var/spool/samba
	printable = Yes

[print$]
	comment = Printer Drivers
	path = /var/lib/samba/printers

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net usershare info --long
No results returned
Backup desktop:
bits: 64 gcc: 7.3.0
Desktop: Cinnamon 3.8.9 (Gtk 3.22.30-1ubuntu1)
Distro: Linux Mint 19 Tara
altair4
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

You have no shared folders defined yet but we need to determine if all of your machines can communicate with this "Server" first. We do that with the ping command.

From both your other machines open up a terminal and run this command:

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ping -c3 192.168.1.7
Then I want you to do the exact same thing by the servers mDNS host name - that is darlynne-OptiPlex-780 with a .local attached at the end :

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ping -c3 darlynne-OptiPlex-780.local
If the last one produces an error go to all of your machines and make sure avahi is running:

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sudo service avahi-daemon restart
Then try it again.

Should you get any errors in any of that please report them back to the forum. Regardless of what method you use to access this machine the above steps have to work.

Back on darlynne-OptiPlex-780:

[1] Make sure samba is installed:

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sudo apt install samba
[2] Then open your file manager, right click your Public folder, select Sharing Options , move the little slider to enable Share this Folder and mark all the other boxes. Then select Create Share.
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

Both ping commands worked on both machines. Samba is installed and I have set up the sharing options on this computer's Public folder. I swear, if I were a dog, my tail would be wagging at this point.
altair4
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

The way Samba in Ubuntu 18 ( Mint 19 ) works in an all Linux network darlynne-OptiPlex-780 should automatically be visible:

In Mint19-XFCE under Browse Network in your File Manager. If it does not for some reason force it. Open a terminal and run:

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thunar smb://darlynne-OptiPlex-780.local
Then Bookmark it.

In Mint17-Cinnamon under Network. If it does not for some reason force it. Open a terminal and run:

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nemo smb://darlynne-OptiPlex-780.local
Then Bookmark it.
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

All three are automatically visible to each other. I should add that I don't understand how to bookmark a drive or if I need to.
altair4
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

If they are all visible there is no need to bookmark them. It is just a convenience.
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

Is mounting the backup computer on the other two units the next step? I wasn't sure if I should go ahead.

ETA: I can't open the backup computer on the others. The error message is "Unable to mount location. Failed to retrieve share list from server: Connection timed out."
altair4
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

"Unable to mount location. Failed to retrieve share list from server: Connection timed out."
That's a Windows Netbios error. You are using neither so it appears you are clicking on the wrong Icon under Network.

Your best bet is creating a bookmark:

edit /home/your-user-name/.config/gtk-3.0/bookmarks on the clients of this server and at the bottom of the file add this line:

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smb://darlynne-OptiPlex-780.local BackupServer
EDIT: Forgot the .local at the end.

When you click on that bookmark it will show you all the shares you created on the server.
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

Hmmm. In network:/// on each computer, I see a total of four icons: the three Linux connections and one Windows Network folder. So I *think* I'm in the right place, but I added the line "smb://darlynne-OptiPlex-780.local BackupServer" to the bookmarks file on one client pc.

The bookmark appears in the folder view on the left. When I click on the bookmark, the same error message as before appears, with the addition of "Please select another viewer and try again."

The backup computer came with Windows 10 installed, but I don't use it and am not trying to share it. I set up a dual boot and Cinnamon 19 is the only system running. If just *having* Windows is the problem, I can get rid of it. And I apologize if not mentioning it originally has created a problem. You've been so helpful and I am grateful to have reached at least this far.
altair4
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

I can't reproduce your symptoms. At least not using the .local host name. Maybe this is what happens when you encrypt your home directory - don't really know - never done it.

I just don't know how to go about inducing those errors. Setting up Samba - at least in an all Linux network - should be a 3 minute exercise. It really sounds like these machines are in different networks but if they were you wouln't be able to ping so ...
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

My home directory isn't encrypted, I've never tried. Even before adding the dual boot backup computer, neither of my Linux-only computers could talk to each other.

I'll continue to research. Thank you so much for taking the time to help me.
redlined

Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by redlined »

hi DarkReader,

I'm very new to linux but am hanging out in newbie space (doing drive-bys:) and going to be setting up something similar locally over the next couple months...so I have to ask-

is anything firewalled on the LAN or otherwise tampering with/malforming packets? e.g. the server itself, dedicated firewall, and/or any routers/switchs, etc
DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

I will definitely look at all of that. When I have any news, I'll post back. Thanks for the suggestions.
DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

I think a recent blood sacrifice may have worked. :twisted:

Altair4, I went back through all of your Samba posts, guides, troubleshooting, etc., following every step. And now my computers are networked. I don't know what was missing or where I went wrong initially, but am delighted with this result. Two remaining questions:

1. On my laptop, I have two icons for the backup computer. They point to the same location and are likely a result of changing the host name to be 15 characters or less. Can I remove one of them?

2. Sharing options on the appropriate folders are set, but I would prefer that only registered users can access files. Is that overkill? If not, do I set up a group, add registered users and a password through Users and Groups or somewhere else?

I'll mark this solved. Couldn't have done it without you. Thank you.
altair4
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by altair4 »

On my laptop, I have two icons for the backup computer.
Looks like you went from Samba not working at all to Samba working too well.

The way Samba in Ubuntu 18 ( Mint 19 ) is set up there are two ways for the server to "announce" itself to the rest of the network - sort of a belt and suspenders approach. The "suspenders" approach is through netbios which was the way things were done before Win2000. The "belt" approach is via mDNS ( avahi ). There are advantages to having both working as some OSs can do it one way or the other but in the case of Linux it can do both of them.

You can turn off the mDNS announcement by editing /etc/samba/smb.conf and right under the workgroup = WORKGROUP line add this one"

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multicast dns register = no
You can turn off netbios with this line in the same place in smb.conf:

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disable netbios = yes
You might want to let both of them alone however. Both will work although the mDNS way is more reliable and efficient since you never know what other networked device you may have in the future that will rely on only one but not the other. Besides now that you got everything working you may not want to fix something that ain't broke.
Sharing options on the appropriate folders are set, but I would prefer that only registered users can access files. Is that overkill? If not, do I set up a group, add registered users and a password through Users and Groups or somewhere else?
It's up to you if you want to do this just remember that unlike Windows there are two sets of passwords. The one the local user logs in with and the one the samba client user uses to access the share.

So for every client user that you want to allow access you would:

** Create a local user using Users and Groups for example.

** Then add that user to the samba password database:

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sudo smbpasswd -a altair
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DarkReader
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Re: Network or File Sharing - Is that the Same Thing?

Post by DarkReader »

I'm happy to go with the not-broken-don't-mess-with-it approach. I have been able to copy files all around and will work on a backup program/regimen next. Thank you for all your help.
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