From the swat man page: swat allows a Samba administrator to configure the complex smb.conf file via a Web browser. In addition, a swat configuration page has help links to all the configurable options in the smb.conf file allowing an administrator to easily look up the effects of any change.

Installing Swat

  1. sudo apt-get install swat xinetd

  2. sudo nano /etc/xinetd.d/swat

  3. Insert the following text (borrowed from

# default: off
# description: SWAT is the Samba Web Admin Tool. Use swat \
#              to configure your Samba server. To use SWAT, \
#              connect to port 901 with your favorite web browser.
service swat
        port    = 901
        socket_type     = stream
        wait    = no
        only_from = localhost
        user    = root
        server  = /usr/sbin/swat
        log_on_failure  += USERID
        disable = no
  1. Exit and Save

Running Swat

  1. Invoke an init script (depreciated) sudo /etc/init.d/xinetd restart

    or use the services utility sudo service xinetd restart

  2. Point your browser to http://localhost:901/

  3. Enter the username and password of a user with proper privileges


Q: The swat help links do not work. How do I tell swat where to find the man pages?

A: You don’t have to tell swat where they are you have to install them.

sudo apt-get install samba-doc

Q: When I open the web page I only see four boxes (Home, Status, View, Password) but none of these boxes give me the ability to configure Samba. What should I do?

A: You do not have the necessary permissions. You will need to ensure you are a user of the administration group (‘admin’) and that the adm group has sufficient access rights to the Samba configuration file (‘smb.conf’). Note the user created during the installation is automatically a member of the adm group.

To ensure the adm group has proper permissions over ‘smb.conf’ use ‘chmod’ and ‘chgrp’ tools to change the file access permissions and group permissions respectively:

sudo chmod g+w /etc/samba/smb.conf
sudo chgrp adm /etc/samba/smb.conf

Another method is to grant all users—the whole world essentially—complete access to ‘smb.conf’. This is not recommended for obvious security reasons.

sudo chmod 777 /etc/samba/smb.conf

Now refresh your browser window and you should see additional boxes for Globals, Shares, Printers and Wizard.

Q: On my 6.06 LTS server clients don't see the swat page. It is just a blank page. What now?

A: Edit the /etc/samba/smb.conf file so that the file contains a line for allowed hosts like:

sudo vi /etc/samba/smb.conf 

or, if you are not that comfortable with vi:

sudo nano /etc/samba/smb.conf

Add or change the following line:

        hosts allow =


Of course this has to match your own network settings. After this you have to restart the samba subsystem.

sudo /etc/init.d/samba restart

Q: On my 9.04 Server i can't access swat. If I test with ss -lt there is a line with

LISTEN  0  0  :::swat  :::*

A: Swat seems to be bound to IPv6 instead of IPv4 A2: IPv6 sockets include IPv4 connectivity by default (unless turned off by the process).

Edit the following line with sudo nano /etc/inetd.conf

swat  stream tcp nowait.400 root /usr/sbin/tcpd /usr/sbin/swat


swat  stream tcp4 nowait.400 root /usr/sbin/tcpd /usr/sbin/swat

then restart inetd with sudo /etc/init.d/inetutils-inetd restart


Swat (last edited 2013-02-23 11:18:42 by duncan-lithgow)