Software

Samba 4.8 to squish scaling bug that Tridge himself coded in 2009

French government is going large with open source file server, new tweaks will help

By Simon Sharwood, APAC Editor

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File and print services project Samba will fix a slew of bugs that have made it hard for the project to scale in version 4.8, due in March.

Samba developer Andrew Bartlett yesterday gave a speech at LinuxConfAU, titled Fixing tridge's mistakes: Taking Samba AD to scale, in which he admitted that in 2009 the project’s founding developer, Andrew Tridgell, made a boo-boo by forgetting to enable database locking during reads. The result has been years of difficulty scaling Samba as LDAP rules require that databases be consistent. Unlocked databases meant records could change even as they were being read, with less-than-brilliant scaling the result.

That’ll be fixed now, in part because Bartlett said Samba is now being asked to operate at serious scale. The French Government, he said, plans to migrate whole departments to Samba in the near future.

Samba 4.8 will also address an indexing issue that has slowed the server by up to 30 per cent.

Other looming enhancements include an increase in maximum database size beyond four gigabytes, adding multi-process LDAP to add scale and automated logging.

“We are surprised we got this far without auto-logging,” Bartlett confessed, adding that Samba will soon spit out lovely loads of JSON.

Another tweak will fix a problem that could cause data loss when conducting an in-place upgrade of Samba 4.6 to 4.7.

Bartlett said Samba’s developers are now confident the code’s ready for enterprise use, thanks to the fact that HPE recently came calling with a request to get Samba working again on HP-UX. Bartlett told the conference that request sparked a double-take or two, but that Samba developers are confident they can deliver. ®

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