"Suitably enough on Friday the 13th, a serious fork in SAMBA
development was announced. SAMBA, the technology that allows
Windows 9x/NT computers to communicate with Linux boxen through
"Microsoft's" file and printer sharing SMB based system has been
the king of its arena for a long while. We take a look at what is
forking off, why it happened, and what it means for you."
"Many Linux Format readers won't be familiar with the term "code
fork", so we'll take a look at that first. Forking is when a team
working on a specific project splits into two, or more, teams no
longer working in direct co-operation with each other. In essence,
its like one group of people separating themselves from the main
development effort and "running off" with the code. Thanks to the
nature of Open Source, this is never fully possible, and code
developed by both sides will still be available to the other
through the GPL. Usually, a fork happens when one group of coders
decide that a specific project needs to be moving in a new
direction, but don't think the rest are listening - but that's not
so with samba."
"If we were asked where all this began, we would have to say
with Microsoft. In Windows 2000, they changed the way that
authentication licenses worked, so that Windows 2000 clients
couldn?t join or authenticate to a domain run by samba. The people
who brought PDC (Primary Domain Controller) functionality to Samba
have split away from the main samba effort citing the need for
"expanding the PDC functionality (we want (full) w2k support)" and
"adding printing support" to samba as some of the reasons for the
fork. Well, there's nothing wrong with that, you may think, until
you look at the roadmap for the original SAMBA project."
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