I’m glad to announce that the free Samba port for iOS is out now. Samba is an implementation of the Windows SMB protocol (which allows you to access devices over your network). This allows you to see your iDevice files over your WiFi networks with no additional software required on your computer.
While SMB was made by Microsoft, Samba ports exist for Linux, Mac OS and tons of other OSes so you can access your device from all of those as well.
The current default configuration for Samba on iOS gives you read-only access to most of the file system and write access to an empty storage directory. This is actually done to prevent accidental damage (it’s easy in Windows Explorer to move a directory from one place to the other by accident). If you want more control over the sharing I highly recommend reading about Samba and how to configure it to do what you want (the configuration file resides in /etc/samba/smb.conf).
This port should was tested on iOS 3 and 4 (iOS 5 will be supported when it’s out).
Popular use cases might include:
- Going to your friends and using your iDevice as an portable storage device which works over WiFi without needing any file copying software on their Windows machine.
- Browsing your photos from your favorite photo viewer on your computer over WiFi.
- For the advanced users you can have full streaming access to your iDevice files from your computer.
- This version has no hidden costs, it’s free.
- This port will not allow you to mount an external SMB drive on your iPhone (that would require a kernel driver).
- When installing Samba, please configure it before first-time usage in the settings app under Samba.
- If you don’t understand something or have a question, please take the time to check the FAQ link in the settings app.