Over the past 18 months my employer has gone over almost entirely to OS X on the desktop, and we're pretty annoyed with the flaky behavior of Exchange 2000 and general lack of anything but the basics when it comes to Apple Mail. Two features which are nice however is that we can authenticate a couple Samba machines against AD so that people can use a single user/pass for email and network shares, and Exchange's public folders. In the case of public folders we have a list of a couple hundred contacts outside of our company which any employee has read access to.
Has anyone attempted to have Samba authenticate against the Zimbra LDAP server? Also, is the GAL designed to act in a way similar to that public folder system? From what I've read it seems more for looking up info about users of the local system.
Samba supports LDAP so I don't see any reason why it won't work. We've not tested this in house but a quick Google search turned up lots of pages on how to configure Samba and LDAP.
We don't support shared folders today. You can however setup a small LDAP instance with just those contacts and then configure that LDAP as a Global Address List. Or if the list never changes you can just post the .csv file and let folks import it on their own. You could even automatically add these contacts to the address book of each user at provision time.