Open Letter to the Samba Team

Posted 13 Feb 2009 at 21:50 UTC by lkcl Share This

I thought I would make use of the 1000th advogato article to write to emphasise my pride in your accomplishments at the Samba "Franky" architecture, and also to emphasise to you that I am fully aware of its strategic significance.

If you recall, the Samba TNG architecture was something that you dismissed vehemently and in no uncertain terms, over a decade ago. I hear word from various people that you privately express regret to them at what happened, but I hear no apologies from you. No matter.

I hear also that you copy and research the internal design of Samba TNG, looking for information and clues as to how to proceed, when you are stuck. I don't receive any financial reward for having you reimplement my work. No matter.

The last piece in the puzzle that allows inter-project cooperation - the final all-important piece that should have been your absolute and number one priority in Samba 2.0, Samba 3.0 and Samba 4.0 is a Named Pipes interoperability layer. As I explained, in quite some distress, to you in November 2004, Named Pipes emulation would allow all of the free software projects and much more to interoperate, cooperate and move forward. Wine. FreeDCE. Samba TNG. Samba 3. Samba 4. Samba Franky. ReactOS. JaraPAC and J-Integra (god help us).

As the CIFS Interops that you attend prove time and time again, inter-project testing is nothing but beneficial to all parties.

Unlike many free software projects, the fact is that IDL files can be used as the "common denominator". Any project that is MSRPC compatible can take part, to help in the enormous goal of catching up with Microsoft's proprietary technology.

You need to move aside.

You have dominated the SMB and MSRPC arena for over a decade, and have been almost criminally negligent in your failure to serve the free software community by opening up these critical interfaces. In many ways, your continued dominance of the NetBIOS, IPC$ and NamedPipes interfaces is worse than what Microsoft has done. At least Microsoft doesn't expect developers to link into core NT infrastructure, but actually offers them some simple header files, some simple (but proprietary) libraries and even some decent documentation, in the form of the MSDN Developer Network.

By incredible contrast, what you have delivered and maintained for over a decade - the File and Print Services - the actual smbd and NetBIOs implementation - is without a shadow of doubt an outstanding long-standing achievement that has saved businesses hundreds of millions of dollars in Microsoft license fees.

Let's see if you can quietly, without fuss, without trying to prove to me or the rest of the world that you are cleverer, smarter or more "right" than I am, deliver to us as your absolute 100% cast-iron top priority without fail, a proper implementation of a Win32-compatible NT Named Pipes emulation layer.

Then you will have delivered on your promise to us to "Open Windows to a Wider World", as developers will finally be able to work with MSRPC without having to learn or accept the inappropriate and unfinished Samba MSRPC infrastructure, and the unacceptable terms and conditions that go with it.


Dude, it's time to let go., posted 16 Feb 2009 at 08:53 UTC by Zaitcev » (Master)

Stop being a sad loser.

Also, nobody gives a flying shit about MSRPC.

interesting, posted 16 Feb 2009 at 21:10 UTC by lkcl » (Master)

zaitcev, your comment say volumes, way more than you expect. precisely because it indicates how misunderstood MSRPC is. MSRPC is the link - the key to microsoft interoperability. if you don't have MSRPC interoperability, then linux is a failure: without MSRPC, there is no samba, and there is no Wine. without samba and without wine, the polarisation between the windows world and the linux world would be so great that it would be an absolute loss. cedega would not exist. codeweavers would not exist. if we were extremely lucky, we would all be editing the registry to enable plaintext passwords of an utterly dominant nt server-controlled market.

so i think if you had your way, zaitcev, the business from which you make your money would not exist.

... also, have you tried telling the Wine team of your opinion?

no can do, posted 17 Feb 2009 at 11:03 UTC by lkcl » (Master)

"time to let go" - no can do, zaitcev, dude. as the only person in the world with the knowledge and expertise in this area _and_ the freedom from corporate restrictive control, then just like that wonderful phrase in the american constitution points out - the one that was highlighted so well by nicholas cage in "national treasure" - those people who can see that something needs doing have the *RE*sponsibility to do something [paraphrased].

so, you're telling us that you do not have the knowledge, nor the expertise, nor the interest in this topic: thank you for your valuable statistically-significant contribution, which is duly noted as a sample of one voice amongst several who went "aw christ not him again" in disrespect and did not write.

in that respect, your simple sentences indicating contempt and disrespect are very very valuable and appreciated.

the trouble is that your disrespectful attitude is not targetted at me, it's targetted at microsoft, the samba team, the wine team, the E.U commission and the U.S. Dept of Justice.

have you actually ever _done_ any MFC / Win32 / COM / ATL programming?

how many exclusively free software developers are there in the world compared to MFC/Win32/COM/ATL programmers, do you think?

you forget that we're in a vaaasstly overwhelmed minority. i got news for you, zaitcev: nobody gives a shit about _us_!

personal judgement vs non-egoistic goals, posted 20 Feb 2009 at 16:48 UTC by lkcl » (Master)

zaitcev, i'm going to let you in on something that will help you, and others, to be able to distinguish between ego and non-ego.

you believe that i have in some way some incredibly sad lonely decade-long way a personal grudge, an egoistical personal desire to make myself "bigger". "right". "vindicated". pick an ego-based word, you name it, you believe that i seek it.

here's the secret, that you and everyone else who reads what i write, don't seem to be in on: there _is_ no egoistical motive behind what i write and what i say, and so consequently i don't give a stuff about what you think. sorry if you get upset about that - about me "not engaging" in your desire to pin egoistical motives on me - but... *shrug*.

think about it. _ten years_ is a _damn_ long time to keep going on about something, is it not?

so what was, is, and always will be the _real_ motivation behind my words and actions?

it's to do the absolute best that i can, to help the most people that i can to have a choice about the software that they use and to have a choice in the software tools that they use.

it always has been.

so i studied windows nt domains, and implemented it - correctly.

what happened unfortunately was that i encountered some people who decided that they "knew better" than what was blindingly-obviously staring-at-them-in-their-faces working perfectly.

my failure is that i couldn't quite grasp that they would be so egoistical. my failure was that i couldn't find a way to get _them_ to "let go" of their egos. they will tell you "we had good technical reasons to oppose adoption of luke's ideas" but it's self-deception, because over the next ten years they then used my code as "reference material", _reimplementing_ every single one.

in that regard, the samba team leaders are utter, utter failures, with no significant originality of thought, nor any _significant_ advances beyond what is _already_ available, in free softare form, yet achieved.

they won't like me telling you this (more ego), but it's straightforward fact.

in ten years, their achievements of which they are incredibly proud (more ego), and so will defend so hard (more ego), are nothing more than what's already been done. FreeDCE. Samba TNG. Wine. Heimdal. OpenLdap. ISODE 8.0. all free software licensed. existing in some cases for well over fifteen to twenty years.

in ten years, the achievements which everyone is so grateful for (encouraging their egos) are mere "catch-up".

ten years! wasted! and everyone _loves_ it! i'm just... blown away, i really am.

you see, far from being "personally pissed off _at_ the samba team because my ego got hurt", i'm pissed off because they stopped my goal to help people. not that i care, zaitcev, if you - personally - do not appreciate or recognise that help.

because if i did care, i would listen to you, i would beg for your mercy, your forgiveness, and would worship the ground that you walk on if onnnly you would take back those punishing cruel words "let gooo, let gooo".

... do you hear me begging? *listens patiently for an answer...*

so the reason why the samba team don't like me - and don't listen to me - is because at the back of their minds (ego) is the quiet disturbing (more ego) fact that they're not actually doing any original work, and what _really_ gets them down (more ego) is that year after year they encounter more road-blocks and have to come back _again_ (with more ego) to read the samba tng source code to find out what to do next.

if they _actually_ wanted to help people, they would have listened - ten years ago - and adopted the "named pipes" layer that's now going into samba "franky", so that _you_ could decide which of the components, from samba or from samba tng, that _you_ wanted to use.

that's exactly what luke howard did (added a named pipes break-out mechanism into samba), and he managed to make a lot of money selling XAD - his from-the-ground-up Unix Active Directory replacement, based on free software components - to Novell, in 2006.

sorry to put things so "in people's faces" but these are the facts. we - the free software community - are a laughing stock. up until recently, there would have been microsoft weenies going "HAR HAR more money for us!" but then now they will be thinking "oh _shit_ if microsoft fails, and we end up out of jobs, then because these free software people couldn't organise a piss-up in a brewery, all of _our_ expertise in Win32, ATL, COM, DCOM and MSRPC is utterly _wasted_, and there's nothing as good to replace it, so the world's now-dominant technology (linux) now that microsoft is failing, takes a step _backwards_."

are you _getting_ it yet, zaitcev?

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