Today it is time to use Samba for USB Drives sharing.
Mounting USB Drive
1. Create new directory where your drive will be mounted
sudo mkdir /media/usbHDD sudo chmod 744 /media/usbHDD
2. List your storage devices and save UUID of your drive
ls -l /dev/disk/by-uuid/
3. Mount that drive to /media/usbHDD, use proper user and group (uid, guid), adjust drive path
sudo mount -o uid=pi,gid=pi /dev/sda1 /media/usb
4. Edit fstab
sudo nano /etc/fstab
and add line with UUID of your drive
UUID=18A9-9943 /media/usbHDD vfat auto,nofail,noatime,users,rw 0 0
5. Verify if drive is mounted
ls -l /media/usbHDD
restart and verify if drive is mounted after reboot
sudo reboot now ls -l /media/usbHDD
The process of installation is very simple
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get upgrade sudo apt-get install samba samba-common-bin
Configuring new Samba share
First make backup of configuration file
sudo cp /etc/samba/smb.conf /etc/samba/smb.conf.bak
Edit configuration file
sudo nano /etc/samba/smb.conf
Add the following lines and save the file
[drive] comment = Public Storage path = /media/usbHDD valid users = @users force group = users create mask = 0660 directory mask = 0771 read only = no guest ok = no
[drive] – name of your share, folder with this name will be visible in network shares
path = /media/pendrive – path to your mounted drive
valid users = @users and force group = users – used user groups
create mask = 0660 and directory mask = 0771 – default permissions when file/directory will be created
read only = no – allows to write to drive, (no – disallows)
guest ok = no – disallow guest users
sudo smbpasswd -a pi
Restart Samba and verify
Changes will be applied only after Samba service restart
sudo /etc/init.d/samba restart
On Windows Machine go to Network an scan/refresh your network,
you should see new device present with name as your RPi host (in my case RPI)
it should contain two directories pi and drive.
pi is a default directory that shares users home directory – /home/pi
You should be able to read and write to your drive directory
Restricting home directory only for certain user
There are several things that limit your network performance:
- Flash drive or HDD drive write speed – you can write as fast as your drive can, some flash drives have slow write speeds ~3-6MB/s
- Raspberry network interface – raspberry has 100Mb/s network intercase so it can handle up to 12MB/s in my case usb HDD drive was capable of writing with such seed. In real time I got ~9MB/s write speed.
- Samba service limitations – I read some opinions, that Samba is slow and gives about ~30-35Mb/s but in my case I got 9-11,5MB/s in reading (80-96Mb/s) and 9-10 MB/s in writing. So almost maximum what network interface can give.
Watching a FullHD 1080p video from Samba network share was flawless.
At the beginning of video playback Video player buffers some data that network connection of RPi is fully utilized (90-100Mb/s),
then in small time intervals it downloaded more video data at 32-50Mb/s
Even when jumping in video timeline there was no problem with buttering and the playback jumped without any glitch.
SMB and NMB deamons
When I inspected the process list on my RPi to check how much of processor power Samba is using during file transfer I noticed that there are smbd and nmbd processes.
So I looked for an answer what they are:
NMB is the NetBIOS name resolution protocol. When you configure your
system for Samba, it will run both smbd and nmbd daemons. One of them (smbd)
will take care of the file transfer, etc., while the other (nmbd) will take
care of the NetBIOS name resolution thus making it possible for the hosts
to show up in your „Network Neighborhood” in the Windows boxes.