Recently I needed to configure 6 PCs for a central workplace. I needed central authentication as well as Network File System(NFS) on all those machines. All this was to facilitate the people of my technical club (the “Delta Force” Webteam) to use those machines for working on collaborative projects. The central authentication assured that I can easily manage user accounts from say, an LDAP server i.e. I can disable login of a user in a client machine or create a new user without having to touch the client machine at all. Similarly, NFS assured that no matter in which of those 6 machines the user logs in, he will always see the same files in his home directory and same configurations like his background-image, firefox addons, etc on that machine as if he always used the same computer for all his work. This eliminates the problem of people complaining that the machine in which their files resides are being used by someone else.
So my overall network configuration has the following prototype :
1) 6 client machines in which user will be able to login (Subnet of the machines : 10.1.39.0/24)
2) An LDAP server ( IP : 10.0.0.163 ) to take care of authentication when user logs into a client machine
3) The LDAP base DN which has the list of all users is ou=people,ou=delta,dc=ldap.delta.nitt,dc=edu
4) An NFS server ( IP : 10.0.0.126 ) which has the user home-directories of all users inside /webteam folder.
Overall working : When a user (say “jereme”) logs into a client machine, his username and password are checked from the LDAP server at 10.0.0.163. If authentication is successful, he’s logged into the machine and his home directory is actually mounted from /webteam/jereme in the NFS server at 10.0.0.126.
I assume you already have the fully configured LDAP and NFS servers since this article is only about configuring the “clients”. So here we go. Pick any of your client machines and do the following :
First we will configure NFS client. For this purpose, we will use the autofs package.