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How do I choose a multi-platform (Linux, Windows, Mac) file sharing solution? if there is a need of secure and reliable file sharing from a Linux server on college network. Which can be the best choice in following conditions;

  • Authentication //Every user should be authenticated to access files/folders
  • Secure file transfer //File should be transferred securely over the network
  • Permission flexibility //Permission for group/user/folder/file
  • Performance and stability //Availability and file transfer speed

Please suggest me FTP or SAMBA? Why?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Your most integrated (i.e. convenient) solution for file sharing in this situation is probably Samba, although it doesn't implement all of your requirements:

  • setting up shared authentication for FTP would be awkward (many servers don't support it)
  • secure file transfer doesn't work for regular FTP or Samba, as far as I know. If you want secure file transfers then you should look at SFTP (file transfer over SSH) or FTP over SSL. You should ask, though, is secure file transfer really necessary? Take a look here for more information about securing a Samba installation.
  • Flexibility is available for permissions using FTP or Samba, although Windows machines won't understand unix file permissions out of the box. You can partition your users and grant permissions to various directories with a reasonable level of granularity with Samba.
  • both systems are perfectly capable of high performance and stability, I think.

I hope this helps you!

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Have you looked at something like OpenUpload? It's a web based application that can be tied to AD or LDAP for authentication. Setup a site with an SSL cert, and you've got encrypted uploads and downloads. It has a provision to mail links to other users too?

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