It looks like a new Samba Server version is coming out. Samba has never been for the faint of heart. It is basically a technology or software used to bridge the gap between the Windows world and the Unix (Linux, really) world. Of course, it functions fine on its own, but many Administrators use it in mixed OS environments. It provides for similar functionality as Active Directory - in other words, user accounts and LDAP type of stuff. It utilizes the SMB Protocol to facilitate common file sharing as well.
"The Samba 4.0 file server contains an initial implementation of SMB3, which will be further developed in later Samba 4 releases into a fully-featured SMB3 clustered file server implementation," the Samba team wrote. "Future developments of our SMB3 server and client suite, in combination with our expanding number of SMB3 tests, will keep driving the performance improvements and improved compatibility with Microsoft Windows that Samba users have come to expect from our software."
Windows server with AD has been around since 2000 and the installed base is massive. While Samba will help enterprises deploy Linux as well, there's no way Linux will immediately displace Windows out of the gate given the massive installed base and investments in the Active Directory infrastructure.
The availability of Samba 4 is a direct offspring of Microsoft's antitrust settlement, which required the company to disclose specific protocols that the Samba team used.
But Microsoft went far beyond just releasing the protocols and has been helping the Samba team throughout the process -- though slow and laborious as it was...."
The ZDNet Article here