Winbind in SmartOS, Part I (the Basics)

Centralized authentication is a terrific tool for anything more than a handful of servers, and Active Directory is often the go-to for authentication within a datacenter.

After testing several centralized-authentications for suitability in our environment, we settled on Winbind both for its features and the issues presented by the other solutions. A future post may detail the investigation and decision, but the biggest reason for us to use Winbind (of several reasons) was the ability to limit SSH access to servers through Active Directory group membership

Note that these steps apply to local SDC/Triton deployments and the Joyent Public Cloud, in addition to stand-alone SmartOS servers, and no changes should be necessary in Active Directory.

TL;DR: see this setup script for a summarization of steps taken in this series, and this repository for configuration files used. Note that some details from part 3 are not covered in the repository, see the readme for a list.

Troubleshooting Steps

You can ignore these if you just want to get Winbind working, but check them out if you want to see why the prior command didn’t work and how the next commands fix it.


Don’t try this in base-64 (yet), there are additional difficulties that are encountered that will be handled in part 2. Use base-32 for now. Additionally, image releases prior to 15.2.0 require additional steps that will not be covered in this series so using 15.2.0+ is recommended.

Configuring Kerberos

Winbind uses a variety of protocols to interact with domain accounts, and the primary one that we need to set up is Kerberos. The configuration is managed in /etc/krb5/krb5.conf, and we can use this minimalistic config to get us started:

        default_realm = DOMAIN.NET
        dns_lookup_kdc = true
        default_tkt_enctypes = rc4-hmac des-cbc-crc des-cbc-md5

        DOMAIN.NET = {
                kpasswd_protocol = SET_CHANGE

Install the mit-krb5 package, then test Kerberos key initialization:

# pkgin -y install mit-krb5
# kinit [user]
kinit: Configuration file does not specify default realm when parsing name [user]

Something isn’t adding up, we did set default_realm in krb5.conf.


Let’s use truss to see where kinit is looking for the config file:

# truss kinit [user] 2>&1 >/dev/null | grep krb5.conf
stat("/opt/local/etc/krb5.conf", 0xFFFFFD7FFFDFF390) Err#2 ENOENT
stat("/etc/krb5.conf", 0xFFFFFD7FFFDFF390) Err#2 ENOENT

There’s the issue, the default krb5.conf included by SmartOS isn’t where Kerberos is looking.

Link krb5.conf to /etc/:

# ln -s krb5/krb5.conf /etc/

Test Kerberos again:

# kinit [user]
Password for [user]@DOMAIN.NET:
# klist
Default principal: [user]@DOMAIN.NET

Valid starting     Expires            Service principal
02/18/16 18:31:54  02/19/16 04:32:06  krbtgt/DOMAIN.NET@DOMAIN.NET
        renew until 02/19/16 18:31:54

Success! Kerberos is now ready to start working for Winbind.

Configuring Winbind

Our first step for Winbind itself is to install the necessary package via pkgsrc. Winbind is bundled in the Samba package, so that is the one that we will use here:

# pkgin -y install samba

We then need to configure Winbind. The settings are stored in the Samba config file at /opt/local/etc/samba/smb.conf; here is a bare-bones smb.conf for our “” access:

        workgroup = DOMAIN
        realm = DOMAIN.NET
        idmap config * : backend = tdb
        idmap config * : range = 1000 - 9999
        idmap config DOMAIN:backend = rid
        idmap config DOMAIN:range = 10000 - 1073751823
        idmap config DOMAIN:schema_mode = rfc2307
        kerberos method = secrets and keytab
        security = ADS
        winbind enum groups = yes
        winbind enum users = yes
        winbind offline logon = yes
        winbind use default domain = yes
        template homedir = /home/%U
        template shell = /usr/bin/bash

We now domain-bind the instance using the Kerberos ticket we created previously with kinit:

# net join -k
Using short domain name -- DOMAIN
Joined '[HOSTNAME]' to dns domain ''

Now that we have Winbind configured, we can start the daemon with this command:

# winbindd

Don’t worry about starting any of the Samba services, they are outside of the scope of Winbind. Test Winbind with these commands:

# wbinfo -u
[list of domain users]
# wbinfu -g
[list of domain groups]
# wbinfo -i [user]
[passwd entry for user, including full name, id, group id, home directory, and shell]

Configuring NSS

User and group data is made available in SmartOS through the Name Service Switch (NSS) facility, and now that Winbind is working we can add it as a source for that information. Update the passwd and group settings in /etc/nsswitch.conf, appending “winbind”:

passwd:     files winbind
group:      files winbind

We can then test to see what the system sees as the users, groups, and credentials with these commands:

# getent passwd
# getent group

Winbind sees users and groups, but the system isn’t seeing them through NSS.


Let’s run getent through truss to see if it is doing anything with the Winbind NSS module:

# truss getent passwd 2>&1 >/dev/null | grep winbind

Nothing. A grep for “nsswitch.conf” also returns nothing, so it appears that getent isn’t even using NSS. Looking at the SMF services, there is a name-service-cache service that is keeping user and group data cached (negating the need for getent to check through NSS). Disabling that service, we try getent again:

# svcadm disable name-service-cache
# truss getent passwd 2>&1 >/dev/null | grep winbind
stat64("/lib/", 0x080471A0)     Err#2 ENOENT
stat64("/usr/lib/", 0x080471A0) Err#2 ENOENT

Now we’re talking. So where is, if not there? A few searches later, we find that there is no “”: the Samba package loads a into /opt/local/lib/. We need to link libnss_winbind into a location that is checked for NSS modules:

# ln -s /opt/local/lib/ /lib/
ln: failed to create symbolic link '/lib/': Read-only file system
# ln -s /opt/local/lib/ /usr/lib/
ln: failed to create symbolic link '/usr/lib/': Read-only file system

That didn’t exactly work, since /usr and /lib are read-only. With that knowledge, we need to change the search locations by modifying (indirectly) ld.conf. We can see the current configuration by running this command:

# crle

Configuration file [version 4]: /var/ld/ld.config
  Platform:     32-bit LSB 80386
  Default Library Path (ELF):   /lib:/usr/lib
  Trusted Directories (ELF):    /lib/secure:/usr/lib/secure

Command line:
  crle -c /var/ld/ld.config -l /lib:/usr/lib -s /lib/secure:/usr/lib/secure


It even gives us the command to use to set it to replicate the current settings! Don’t forget to re-enable the name-service-cache service.

Add /opt/local/lib to ld.config, restart the services that need the new library path, and link as

# crle -c /var/ld/ld.config -l /opt/local/lib -u
# svcadm restart ssh
# svcadm restart cron
# ln -s /opt/local/lib/
# svcadm restart name-service-cache
# getent passwd
[passwd including domain users]
# getent group
[groups including domain groups]

Configuring PAM

Our last step for basic Winbind auth is to configure the Pluggable Authentication Module (PAM) to use the pam_winbind module. We need to look for these sections in /etc/pam.conf and add the module into them (order does matter within each section):


Adjusting the PAM configuration is a delicate operation: make any mistakes and authentication will no longer work. Always leave a session open when working with pam.conf, since a mistake won’t affect sessions that are already active. There is an additional safety net available in SmartOS: you can edit pam.conf from the SmartOS global zone via /zones/[uuid]/root/etc/pam.conf.

other auth requisite
other auth required 
other auth required 
other auth sufficient         /opt/local/lib/samba/security/ use_first_pass
other auth sufficient

other account sufficient      /opt/local/lib/samba/security/ use_first_pass
other account requisite
other account required

other session required
other session required        /opt/local/lib/samba/security/

other password required
other password sufficient     /opt/local/lib/samba/security/
other password requisite
other password requisite
other password required

With that configured, we can finally get SSH access via domain credentials:

$ ssh [user]@[host]
Could not chdir to home directory /home/[user]: No such file or directory
   __        .                   .
 _|  |_      | .-. .  . .-. :--. |-
|_    _|     ;|   ||  |(.-' |  | |
  |__|   `--'  `-' `;-| `-' '  ' `-'
                   /  ; Instance (base-32-lts 15.4.0)

mail: Cannot open file '/var/mail/' for output

Not perfect, but we have Winbind access! Upcoming posts will detail how to get Winbind working in base-64 (part 2) and polishing it up for a real environment (part 3).