OS X and FreeBSD: What could be a good setup

Chuck Swiger cswiger at mac.com
Mon Apr 12 12:14:53 PDT 2004

Bart Silverstrim wrote:
[ ... ]
> I'm looking at using FreeBSD on a server (web, mail, file server) with 
> OS X, Windows, and probably Linux clients.  I'd like the FreeBSD server 
> to handle authentication, but that may be a pipe dream to accomplish 
> across platforms easily :-/

LDAP would be the way to go given the platforms you mention, although NIS 
would work for everything but Windows and would be much easier to set up.

[ ... ]
> That would leave SMB/CIFS, meaning SAMBA, but I haven't found anyone 
> able to tell me if CIFS is secure "over the wire".  I seem to recall a 
> utility that would sniff network packets and if NFS is used, it can 
> capture the files as they're travelling over the network; can this 
> happen with CIFS?

Oh, yes: unless you use an encrypted tunnelling protocol like a VPN or an SSH 
tunnel, pretty much all filesharing protocols are vulnerable to subnet-local 
sniffing.  Using strong encryption when using wireless is a fine idea.  :-)

SMB/CIFS is a reasonably good choice of filesharing protocol if you're dealing 
with Windows or Mac systems using HFS+ due to case-insensitivity.  For a 
pure-Unix setup, NFS (or NFS+NIS) would be a better choice.  Modern Unices 
handle SMB about as well as they handle NFS.


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