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A complicated third-party arrangement means that the open-source Samba project will be able to make use of proprietary documents describing Microsoft file-sharing software.

Samba, governed by the General Public License (GPL), lets Unix or Linux servers behave like Windows machines used to share files over a network and control networked printers. But the effort has been difficult: Microsoft doesn't go out of its way to share the details of the protocols; patent infringement concerns also have appeared more than once.

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