How to securely web enable access to CIFS / SMB File Shares

One of the predominant use cases that many companies have is to enable file access to SMB file shares that live behind the corporate firewall , or indeed  are hosted on IaaS infrastructures (such as Amazon FSX or Azure Files), without the need for a VPN and without reconfiguring permissions whilst using Active Directory or LDAP for authentication and also ensuring that data is secure and compliance legislation is satisfied.

This has of course become even more of a requisite during the recent Covid-19 pandemic in which there is a pressing need to enabled. such access for remote workers.

Global storage Metamodel

Accessing files over CIFS/SMB network over VPN using a mobile network is possible but access can be patchy, clients apps limited and it is often extremely slow.

The File Fabric enables this using its built in CIFS / SMB connector. This blog post will step through how to web enable SMB file shares.

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CISO Bulletin: Multi-Cloud Authorization With the Enterprise File Fabric™

In a recent post about authentication with the Enterprise File Fabric™  I briefly mentioned authorization and committed to a follow-up post on that topic.  This post explains how the the File Fabric’s authorization features are used to manage user access to directories and their contents on the storage that is attached to the File Fabric.  As we’ll see, the File Fabric can use the groups that are set up in  authentication system to create a unified security structure that spans all storage.  Additionally, for some resources,  the File Fabric can import and use established  user authorizations  and also allow the storage’s native access controls to govern users read and write actions.

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How to Enable Remote Employees to Securely Access On-premises Company Data in Under 1 Hour

Interest in letting employees to work from home has never been higher and will remain high even after the Covid-19 virus has run its course.  For Companies large and small  the key challenge is how to make Company data available remotely in a way that is easy for employees to use without compromising on information security.  The Enterprise File Fabric™ offers an unmatched set of features to support secure remote working.  In this post we’ll see how to set up the File Fabric in less than an hour to provide secure remote access to on-premises data, be that SMB, NAS / SAN or Microsoft DFS shares.  The best part is that data is not copied or removed anywhere, it remains in the same secure place and the File Fabric provides web scale secure access  to it .

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Non-Proprietary Storage Workflows for Media Asset Management

Today’s Media and Entertainment workflows can depend on multiple storage types and their associated protocols.  Assets might be delivered via an AWS S3 bucket, Dropbox share, Azure Blob container, proprietary file acceleration vendor, FTP, SFTP, or a host of other new technologies.  Once delivered an asset needs to navigate Hot, Nearline, and Archival storages while being edited, conformed, transcoded, shared, distributed and broadcasted.

While some software vendors have updates allowing access to some of the cloud based storage protocols, other applications remain stuck exclusively on only internal NFS or CIFS access.  When this happens many workflows are downgraded to the lowest common denominator (CIFS/NFS) preventing the use of more cost effective, durable or highly available scale-out storage systems.  Alternatively, a CIFS/NFS gateway might be considered to “convert” protocols.  However, almost all gateways proprietize data and compromise the cost savings of scale-out storage.

The Enterprise File Fabric speaks multiple protocols/APIs, indexes data in-place and can eliminate workflow headaches without proprietizing the data.

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Share Files Securely Using Slack and the Enterprise File Fabric

Slack is a cloud-based collaboration tool which many teams and organisations already use as a collaboration hub. The File Fabric is a ‘single pane of glass’ fo unstructured file data, be that on-clodu or on-premises and it makes using, sharing, and accessing these files ultra secure. The File Fabric Slack connector brings together the best collaboration hub with the best File hub !

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Replacing the Microsoft Forefront Unified Access Gateway (UAG) to securely access on-premises DFS or SMB File Shares

Providing remote users with access to on-premises file systems, such as Microsoft DFS or Windows CIFS / SMB shares,  can be a hard task, especially as multiple security layers often exist, like firewalls and VPNs.

Some companies have opted to solve this challenge by deploying the Microsoft Forefront Unified Access Gateway (UAG) as a bridge to provide users who are remote with access to these on premise systems. The UAG was a software solution, facilitating access to file shares, intranets and corporate systems.

The Microsoft Forefront Unified Access Gateway is now officially deprecated.

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Access Microsoft Distributed File System Shares (DFS) from a web browser using the Enterprise File Fabric – Part 1

Access Microsoft Distributed File System Shares (DFS) from a web browserThis blog post will highlight how a company can leverage their existing Microsoft Distributed File System (DFS) infrastructure as a part of their cloud strategy. Companies will be able to treat DFS shares as cloud storage and automatically create cloud DFS shares for users based on their DFS home directory.

Microsoft Distributed File System (DFS) is a technology that allows multiple servers to host a single file share, providing fault tolerance and performance enhancement for multi-site Active Directory topologies.

Microsoft introduced DFS as an add-on to Windows NT 4.0, and DFS has been included in all versions of Windows since Windows 2000. DFS consists of a server component, included in all versions of Windows Server, and a client component, included in all versions of Windows. It works with the Server Message Block (SMB) protocol (sometimes referred to as Windows networking). The SMB protocol is also more commonly known as the Common Internet File System (CIFS). Continue reading “Access Microsoft Distributed File System Shares (DFS) from a web browser using the Enterprise File Fabric – Part 1”

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Automatically Archiving CIFS Windows Shares to OpenStack Swift, Amazon S3 and other object storage clouds

Following on from our last post in which we demonstrated how CIFS Windows  shares can be exposed outside of the corporate firewall this blog post will focus on how to Archive CIFS Windows shares to OpenStack Swift.

The SME Enterprise Cloud Appliance allows any primary cloud to be paired with a backup cloud for archive and business continuity purposes.

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Joint Presentation with SciNet on integrating Storage Made Easy with HPSS

Storage Made Easy recently gave a joint presentation with SciNet for the HUF2015 Conference.

The presentation focused on the integration of Storage Made Easy with the High Performance Storage System (HPSS).

HPSS is a flexible, scalable, policy-based Hierarchical Storage Management product, developed as the result of over two decades of collaboration among five Department of Energy laboratories in the USA and IBM, with significant contributions by universities and other laboratories worldwide. It provides scalable hierarchical storage management (HSM), archive, and file system services using cluster, LAN and SAN technologies to aggregate the capacity and performance of many computers, disks, disk systems, tape drives and tape libraries.

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Dedicated OpenStack Swift Windows Drive now available

Post Updated October 6th 2016

We now have plenty of companies and ISP’s who are using our full Enterprise File Share and Sync solution for OpenStack but we have long been approached by companies asking if they could have just the drive piece of our functionality available that works in a dedicated fashion outside of our full EFSS solution.

To that end we are pleased to announce the release of a dedicated OpenStack Windows CIFS Drive that is a standalone installer that works directly with OpenStack Swift instances.

Install is simple:

OpenStack Drive InstallerOpenStack Cloud Drive

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