Create Roaming Profiles in Samba4

A roaming profile is a feature of Domain server which allows users to access their personal data on any computer which is joined under the same domain on the same network. So basically the users are logging into their profile whose location is defined on the domain server. So every time a user logs in they are redirected to their profile location so this action becomes computer independent.

Earlier this feature was limited with Windows Active directory domain server but with the introduction of Samba4, roaming profiles can also be implemented to windows NT machine joined under Linux (Samba4) domain server.

The following commands are tested on RedHat 6 and CentOS 6.

Create a directory "profiles" inside /usr/local/samba/var

# mkdir /usr/local/samba/var/profiles 

Now make an entry of this directory in smb.conf to make it sharable among the domain users

# vi /usr/local/samba/etc/smb.conf
path = /usr/local/samba/var/profiles
read only = no

Restart the samba server

# killall samba
# samba
# kinit administrator@EXAMPLE.COM

Once your samba is restarted you can check the updates shared directory on your server

# smbclient -L localhost -U%
Sharename       Type       Comment
---------       ----       -------
netlogon        Disk
sysvol          Disk
profiles        Disk
IPC$            IPC        IPC Service
REWRITE: list servers not implemented

Now go to your windows client machine where you have installed the remote administration tool for your domain server. 

Go to run prompt and type dsa.msc

Go to the user for whom you want to implement roaming profile and add the path followed by the username of the user of the profile directory under the profile tab of the properties section as shown below :

Now run this command to update the policies on the users

Once done go to the client machine and login by the username of the domain user for whom the profile path have been set. Now this time the user will login to the server where the profile location has been mentioned.

Go to your server and you can find a directory by the name of the user must have been created under profile directory
# cd /usr/local/samba/var/profiles
# ls -l
drwxr-xr-x 12 3000012 users   4096 Aug  2 15:35 test

Make sure that the user with roaming profile is logging into the same OS i.e either Windows 7 or Windows XP as I noticed that when I logged in with a user in two different machines with different OS then two directories where created with different profiles. So the user won't be able to access his data which he saved in Windows 7 of he logs into Windows XP
# cd /usr/local/samba/var/profiles
drwxr-xr-x 12 3000012 users   4096 Aug  2 15:35 test
drwxr-xr-x 15 3000012 users   4096 Aug  2 18:53 test.V2

Here test is the directory created when my user logs into Windows XP and test.V2 is used when the user logs into Windows 7.

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