Samba share with freeipa auth

Use FreeIPA Authentication for Samba CIFS Shares for Non-domain Windows Clients

I couldn’t find a singular place on the Internet for a descriptive guide of how to configure samba to use freeipa authentication for cifs shares for non-domain Windows clients.
There are guides out there for freeipa cross-domain trust, so you can share with a domain-joined Windows client, including

This document will show you how to set up Samba 4.4.4 to use FreeIPA 4.4.0 usernames and passwords to allow Windows clients to connect to cifs shares.

Example environment

  • Freeipa domain is
  • A freeipa master on CentOS7
  • A freeipa replica on CentOS7
  • Samba server will go on host2.vm.examplecom.
  • Windows client is

Samba share with freeipa auth

Install freeipa server (and replica)

You need a working freeipa environment, which is outside the scope of this document. A quick sample installation process is:

firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service=freeipa-ldap --add-service=freeipa-ldaps --add-service=ntp --add-service=dns --add-service=dhcp --add-service=kerberos
firewall-cmd --reload

yum install -y ipa-server ipa-client
ipa-server-install -r VM.EXAMPLE.COM -n --mkhomedir --hostname="$( hostname --fqdn )" --admin-password='adminpassword' --ds-password='dspassword'

firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service=freeipa-ldap --add-service=freeipa-ldaps --add-service=ntp --add-service=dns --add-service=dhcp --add-service=kerberos
firewall-cmd --reload

yum install -y ipa-server ipa-client
ipa-client-install --mkhomedir --force-ntpd --enable-dns-updates
ipa-replica-install --setup-ca --mkhomedir

Install samba server

Install the samba packages.

yum -y install samba samba-client sssd-libwbclient

Create the cifs principal for samba on one of the ipa controllers.

# run on an ipa controller. This principal name is "service/hostname"
ipa service-add cifs/

Fetch the keytab to the samba server. In this example, it’s the same as the replica.

# on samba server
kinit -kt /etc/krb5.keytab
ipa-getkeytab -s -p cifs/ -k /etc/samba/samba.keytab
setsebool -P samba_enable_home_dirs on &


Install adtrust components

On the freeipa controller

yum -y install ipa-server-trust-ad
ipa-adtrust-install --add-sids

I recommend running this interactively, as shown above. Let it overwrite your samba config. It will configure it to use the registry, and we will rewrite it to suit the demands here.
The ipa-adtrust-install command generates the records you need to add to dns. They will look like:

Add the following service records to your DNS server for DNS zone 86400 IN SRV 0 100 389 86400 IN SRV 0 100 88 86400 IN SRV 0 100 88 86400 IN SRV 0 100 389 86400 IN SRV 0 100 88 86400 IN SRV 0 100 88

I successfully added them just fine by pasting them into my zone file and running rndc reconfig or systemctl restart named.
The adtrust mechanism adds new attributes to each user and group, specifically ipaNTSecurityIdentifier (the SID) and ipaNTHash. Technically the ipaNTHash can only be generated when the user changes passwords.

On the samba server

Install the ipa-server-trust-ad package on the samba server. You need this package there to get the ipasam config option in smb.conf.

yum -y install ipa-server-trust-ad

Open the firewall for the ports mentioned in the output of the command. You can use this script.

touch "${tf}"; chmod 0644 "${tf}"; chown root:root "${tf}"; restorecon "${tf}"
cat <<EOFXML > "${tf}"
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
  <short>IPA and Samba</short>
  <description>This service provides the ports required by the ipa-adtrust-install command.</description>
  <port protocol="tcp" port="135"/>
  <port protocol="tcp" port="138"/>
  <port protocol="tcp" port="139"/>
  <port protocol="tcp" port="445"/>
  <port protocol="tcp" port="1024-1300"/>
  <port protocol="udp" port="138"/>
  <port protocol="udp" port="139"/>
  <port protocol="udp" port="389"/>
  <port protocol="udp" port="445"/>
systemctl restart firewalld
firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service=freeipa-samba
firewall-cmd --reload
echo done

Allow samba to read passwords

This is the magic part that is so hard to find on the Internet.
You will need to give special permissions to the samba service to read user passwords.

ipa permission-add "CIFS server can read user passwords" \
   --attrs={ipaNTHash,ipaNTSecurityIdentifier} \
   --type=user --right={read,search,compare} --bindtype=permission
ipa privilege-add "CIFS server privilege"
ipa privilege-add-permission "CIFS server privilege" \
   --permission="CIFS server can read user passwords"
ipa role-add "CIFS server"
ipa role-add-privilege "CIFS server" --privilege="CIFS server privilege"
ipa role-add-member "CIFS server" --services=cifs/



If you use ldapsearch with kerberos authentication (after a kinit admin, of course), you can see attributes about users.

ldapsearch -Y gssapi "(uid=username)"

Even if the user has generated a new password since the adtrust installation, even the admin cannot see the ipaNTHash attribute.
To confirm the samba service can read the ipaNTHash, use its keytab and search for that attribute.

# on the samba server, so
kdestroy -A
kinit -kt /etc/samba/samba.keytab cifs/
ldapsearch -Y gssapi "(ipaNTHash=*)" ipaNTHash

Configure samba to use freeipa auth

When freeipa adjusts the samba config, it will just make it use the registry backend. You can view the equivalent conf file with testparm.
Here is a complete /etc/samba/smb.conf.

touch "${tf}"; chmod 0644 "${tf}"; chown root:root "${tf}"; restorecon "${tf}"
cat <<EOFCONF > "${tf}"
	debug pid = yes
	workgroup = VM
	domain master = Yes
	ldap group suffix = cn=groups,cn=accounts
	ldap machine suffix = cn=computers,cn=accounts
	ldap ssl = off
	ldap suffix = dc=vm,dc=example,dc=com
	ldap user suffix = cn=users,cn=accounts
	log file = /var/log/samba/log
	max log size = 100000
	domain logons = Yes
	registry shares = Yes
	disable spoolss = Yes
	dedicated keytab file = FILE:/etc/samba/samba.keytab
	kerberos method = dedicated keytab
	#passdb backend = ipasam:ldapi://%2fvar%2frun%2fslapd-VM-EXAMPLE-COM.socket
	#passdb backend = ldapsam:ldapi://%2fvar%2frun%2fslapd-VM-EXAMPLE-COM.socket
	passdb backend = ipasam:ldap:// ldap://
	security = USER
	create krb5 conf = No
	rpc_daemon:lsasd = fork
	rpc_daemon:epmd = fork
	rpc_server:tcpip = yes
	rpc_server:netlogon = external
	rpc_server:samr = external
	rpc_server:lsasd = external
	rpc_server:lsass = external
	rpc_server:lsarpc = external
	rpc_server:epmapper = external
	ldapsam:trusted = yes
	idmap config * : backend = tdb

	ldap admin dn = cn=Directory Manager

	comment = Home Directories
	valid users = %S, %D%w%S
	browseable = No
	read only = No
	inherit acls = Yes
systemctl restart smb.service


Get localsid

Get the local SID

net getlocalsid

Changing ipa domains

It’s possible that if you change ipa domains, the sssd cache is not cleared and you will have cached information for the old domain which can prevent user authentication from happening. You can just clear the cache directory manually and restart sssd.

rm -rf /var/lib/sss/db/*
systemctl restart sssd.service




  1. install samba and kerberize it
  2. add cifs/servername entry
  3. cifs service needs custom privilege to read password
  4. Each user must generate a new password
  5. Seminal article about freeipa and samba integration
  6. Changing ipa domains

Samba share with AD authentication


AD is great for a Windows environment. Now I have a guide for Samba shares with freeipa auth!


This document describes how to configure a Linux system joined to an AD environment to have a working Samba share for Windows users that uses the AD users and groups for authentication.

Preliminary steps

These steps are covered in the internal CentOS and Ubuntu 16.04 templates.

  • Ensure ntp is running and enabled
  • The server is joined to the domain

Setting up samba

Install samba (which should include samba-client and samba-common, at least for rpm)

Centos 7 Ubuntu 16.04
yum -y install samba
apt-get install -y samba


Open firewall

Centos 7 Ubuntu 16.04
firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service=samba
systemctl restart firewalld.service
ufw allow samba

Modify /etc/samba/smb.conf

bup /etc/samba/smb.conf 2>/dev/null
cat < /etc/samba/smb.conf
        security = ads
        workgroup = EXAMPLE
        realm = EXAMPLE.COM
        kerberos method = system keytab
        netbios name = $( hostname -s )
        server string = Samba Server Version %v
        log file = /var/log/samba/log.%m
        max log size = 50
        dns proxy = no
        encrypt passwords = yes
        passdb backend = tdbsam
        load printers = no
        cups options = raw
        printcap name = /dev/null
        comment = Home Directories
        browseable = no
        writable = yes

/bin/cp -p /etc/samba/smb.conf /etc/samba/smb.conf.example

Reference for kerberos method:
On CentOS 7 only, set SELinux to allow samba to share nfs locations if necessary.

setsebool -P samba_share_nfs 1

Start and enable the samba service

Centos 7 Ubuntu 16.04
systemctl enable smb
systemctl start smb
systemctl enable smbd nmbd
systemctl start smbd nmbd

Making smb.conf dynamic

Unfortunately smb.conf does not provide support for a directive similar to “include = /etc/samba/smb.conf.d/*.conf.” However, with some modifications and a shell script this can be simulated.
A template file, input directory for extra snippets, and output file can be used along with this script.

cat <<'EOFSCRIPT' > /usr/local/bin/samba-conf
# File: /usr/local/bin/samba-conf

tmpfile1=/etc/samba/smb.conf.orig.$( date "+%Y-%m-%d").$$

[[ ! -f "${infile1}" ]] && echo "$0: 2. Template not found: ${infile1}. Aborted." 1>&2 && exit 1

   cat "${infile1}"
   printf "\n"
   find "${indir1}" -type f -regex ".*.conf" 2>/dev/null | sed -e 's/^/include = /;'
} > "${tmpfile1}"

   if ! diff -q "${tmpfile1}" "${outfile1}";
      /bin/chmod --ref "${outfile1}" "${tmpfile1}"
      /bin/cp -p "${tmpfile1}" "${outfile1}"
      /bin/rm -rf "${tmpfile1}"
   /bin/rm -rf "${tmpfile1}"
} >/dev/null 2>&1
chmod 750 /usr/local/bin/samba-conf

Modify any files in /etc/samba/smb.conf.d/ and then run samba-conf.

Connecting client to the share

On a Windows client, use Windows Explorer and navigate to \\\ and see if the share is available. If you must log in as a different user, you can use the Windows command on the command line:

net use \\\bgscripts /user:example\bgscripts

Also to clear a connection to a shared location, use:

net use \\\bgscripts /delete


Sample share file /etc/samba/smb.conf.d/bgscripts.conf

mkdir -p /etc/samba/smb.conf.d/
cat < /etc/samba/smb.conf.d/bgscripts.conf
        path = /mnt/scripts/share
        comment = Test samba share
        browsable = yes
        public = yes
        writable = yes
        valid users = @"Linux-Server-Access_grp@EXAMPLE.COM"



  3. Complete working guide with AD users and everything
  4. SELinux managing contexts

SELinux Policy: Managing File Contexts
Change file context

chcon -R -t public_content_t /mydata/html

Does not persist across a relabel! (eg reboot)
Add new mapping

semanage fcontext -a -t public_content_t '/mydata/html(/.*)?'

Apply the policy context to existing files

restorecon -vvFR /mydata/html
  1. SELinux policy
  2. Ubuntu needed help accessing AD through SSSD. Found solution here

Internal documents

  1. The environment required, including krb5.conf and sssd.conf, comes from Building the Centos 7 Template
  2. Firewall commands from Adding the service httpd