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W2K PC's unable to see all other W2K PC's on a LAN with a 192.x.x.x and a 172.x.x.x network - (at windows networking level)

Posted on 2003-03-24
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Last Modified: 2010-03-18
I have a LAN with a number of windows 2000 PC's on it. Each PC has 2 IP addresses  - a 172.x.x.x address and a 192.x.x.x address (for historical reasons).

All these computers can see each others IP addresses - E.g if you do a ping from one to another they will see each other.

If the computer has a mapped drive on another PC then it can see this mapped drive.

However when (using windows explorer) you open "Computers near me" then only some of the PC's on the network show up. This means that I can't open a file on a PC that is not showing up on windows explorer - unless I already have the drive mapped.

Does anyone know how to fix this so that all the PC's show up all of the time?
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Question by:darexx
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21 Comments
 
LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:dancorcal
ID: 8196326
Do the computers that show up in the computers near me view have anything in common. Such as if you ping the computers that show up by name what IP is given for that name? Are they all 192.xxx address or 172.xxx addresses?

Also have you tried clicking the "entire network" selection instead of computers near me? This should show all computers that are available.

If neither of these work, a possible work around is that if you know the name of the computer you are trying to connect to. Go to the run line and type \\thecomputername and the shares and resources available should be there.

Hope this helps.

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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:TroutOz
ID: 8200415
Check the event log and in the system logs see if you are getting browser errors.

I know there was a few issues with having w2k machines dual homed. Of the top of my head the solution was to unbind netbios of one the IP addresses. (obviously you need to decide in wich subnet you want to do this and make sure it's the same on all your PCs)

let me know hos it goes I may come up with some other ideas if it fails.

D.


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Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8201791
Hi Guys,

thanks for your answers. I have been doing some testing to try to answer your questions.

dancoral, If you ping PC's by name they all show up as 172. addresses. (you can't ping one of the problem PC's by name - although you can ping both its IP addresses). Clicking entire network doesn't work.

Using the the computer name from the run box doesn't seem to work.

I know from experience that if I delete the 192. address from a PC that is having problems then the rest of the network will show up.

TroutOz, I have checked the event log and there are indeed browsers errors showing up. Here is an error from one of the problem PC's that can't see the whole network:

The master browser has received a server announcement from the computer JOHN that believes that it is the master browser for the domain on transport NwlnkNb. The master browser is stopping or an election is being forced.

How would you unbind netbios?
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:TroutOz
ID: 8209267
Just right click on My Network Places  
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:TroutOz
ID: 8209381
oops ...

What we need to do is unbind one of the interfaces. I would say the 192.168.* one from what you said in your last post but you can choose.

I was saying Just right click on My Network Places and choose properties.

Click the connection you want to modify (unbind), and on the Advanced menu, click Advanced Settings.

On the Adapters and Bindings tab, in Bindings for (adapter name), you will see the protocols you have. just untick them to unbind them.

That should do it.

I think what happens is that you can only have one master browser per subnet because you have bound 2 IP to one ethernet segment it sees the master browser broadcast on both interfaces (wich in reality is the same one).

Don't know if it will fix the original problem but it should stop the errors.

Good luck let us know how it goes.

D.
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Mcscotsman
ID: 8212644
If I may add a couple of comments..
I bet you can access that problem pc by clicking start>run and entering \\ip-address\share- right? If that's the case, you can circumvent those issues by placing some entrys into your hosts file- have you tried that yet? Your system will check that file just after it's local cache- so its very fast- I know its second out of (I think) eight ways to resolve names, and definately before DNS and WINS. BTW- I do agree with all of the above, and it those comments will help your situation. Cheers.
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8216776
TroutOz,

just checking out your suggestion. Have followed the path as suggested but all I can find under the adaptors and bindings tab is
"bindings for local area connection".
In this box is "client for MS networks" and a suboption of that is "Internet Protocol (TCP/IP).

There does not seem to be anything IP specific ...
(note that the PC's have both IP's on one network card)
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:TroutOz
ID: 8217037
I just read a bit more. I was slightly off track. It looks like you can't unbind one IP address from the protocol if you only have one adapter. The IP is bound to the adapter and the adapter inturn is bound to the protocol.

Are you running 2 or more of the following protocols?
IPX (Netware)
IP
NetBEUI (Old Microsoft LanMan Protocol)

What I found is that the error can also be produced when you bind multiple protocols. Have a look at

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;133241

The article refers to older versions of the OS but it is still valid for 2000 (the basics havent changed that much)

See also http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;314604

I know you said that you need both IP addresses because of historical reason. But you also said "I know from experience that if I delete the 192. address from a PC that is having problems then the rest of the network will show up"

What would happen if you remove the 192.* subnet?  

There could be a work around this if you route your network instead of having all the computer needing both IP. They can all be on the 172.* subnet and just one (running W2K server) would have both. The server would become your default route for the 172.* subnet.

What Mcscotsman sugested is a good idea you can ad them to the host or lmhost file. This would solve the issue of being able to say \\server\share to connect but not sure it would solve the browsing issue.

D.
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8217867
TroutOz,

just checking out your suggestion. Have followed the path as suggested but all I can find under the adaptors and bindings tab is
"bindings for local area connection".
In this box is "client for MS networks" and a suboption of that is "Internet Protocol (TCP/IP).

There does not seem to be anything IP specific ...
(note that the PC's have both IP's on one network card)
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8217869
TroutOz,

just checking out your suggestion. Have followed the path as suggested but all I can find under the adaptors and bindings tab is
"bindings for local area connection".
In this box is "client for MS networks" and a suboption of that is "Internet Protocol (TCP/IP).

There does not seem to be anything IP specific ...
(note that the PC's have both IP's on one network card)
0
 
LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Mcscotsman
ID: 8219175
Here's a great link for your browser issue. Maybe a missed something, but what are you using for name services?

http://www.win2000mag.net/Articles/Index.cfm?ArticleID=25643&pg=1

0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8237825
Hi Mscotsman,

just tried putting an entry into the hosts file as you suggested - not sure what the format should be so I tried:

IP address    computer name

E.g.

192.168.x.x   joesmith

Is that the correct format (rather than a full domain name) for the computer to be picked up in the list (browse list?) of PC's E.g. under net view.
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8238062
That format didn't seem to work under net view (and presumbaly therefore not from windows explorer).
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8238155
TroutOz,

some of the machines are running NWLink NetBios and NWLink IPX as well as TCPIP.

Ok so browing basically means being able to see what is available on the network - before actually connecting to a given share (which obviously you can't do if you don't know the share name). It is definitely the browsing issue that I want to solve.

I think that //ProblemPCname/sharename does work for a visible PC to be able to connect to a share on one of the hidden Pc's - but I am not sure whether it works in the other direction (haven't been able to check it yet).
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8238242
TroutOz,

some of the machines are running NWLink NetBios and NWLink IPX as well as TCPIP.

Ok so browing basically means being able to see what is available on the network - before actually connecting to a given share (which obviously you can't do if you don't know the share name). It is definitely the browsing issue that I want to solve.

I think that //ProblemPCname/sharename does work for a visible PC to be able to connect to a share on one of the hidden Pc's - but I am not sure whether it works in the other direction (haven't been able to check it yet).
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8238282
Mscotsman, not quite sure what you mean by what am I using for name services.

The network is running as a workgroup. I don't have a domain that PC's need to log onto or a primary domain controller - if that answers your question.
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8238890
I now have a somewhat clearer statement of the problem.

There are two protocols on the network TCPIP and Nwlink. The problem PC is only getting the browse list for the Nwlink protocol - since when I disable the Nwlink protocol - it can't see any PC's at all whereas when it is enabled it can see the subset of PC's that also have the protocol enabled.

According to http://www.winnetmag.com/Articles/Index.cfm?ArticleID=24880
( a sister article of Mscotsman's link above) :

"Windows maintains a separate browse list for each protocol on your network. Client computers that are configured to use multiple protocols request, receive, and merge browse lists from each protocol."

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LVL 1

Accepted Solution

by:
Mcscotsman earned 160 total points
ID: 8240019
You are on the right track. I'm assuming that you read and implemented the solutions on that link. I would be looking for your master browser and make sure that it and it's backup browsers are in sink. You can use the w2k resource kit>Diagnostic Tools>Browser Monitor tool to check the status.

Now, you really need some type of name service. Years ago, I was in your shoes and having similar issues. I suggest learning about DNS and implementing that right away. It's required in a W2K domain infrastructure and you will need to get your hands on it sooner or later, and if it were me, it would be sooner. Microsoft is trying to move exclusively to DNS, but some legacy apps require WINS. Although it does have its problems, its easy to install, and almost takes care of itself- especially in a small environment.

Hosts file:
If you have DNS, you don't need this file.

ip <tab> FQDN (pc.domain.com)

Save as hosts with no extension.

Then restart The DNS Client service to update.

Lmhosts file:
If you have WINS, you don't NEED this file but your system can use it if you specify it to do so.

This maps ip to NetBIOS names as such:

ip <tab> pcname

Hope this helped you. Cheers.
0
 

Author Comment

by:darexx
ID: 8244702
Hi guys,

thanks for all your help, a very tricky problem. I have requested CS to split the points.


I'll probably ask a new question on how to set up dns as a method of name resolution on a LAN. I am fairly familiar with DNS on the internet but I've no idea how to set it up on a W2K LAN.
0
 

Expert Comment

by:SpideyMod
ID: 8245872
A request for a split has been made.  I have left instructions in http://www.experts-exchange.com/Community_Support/Q_20569905.html

The points have been reduced from 75 to 40 so you may accept the answer provided by Mcscotsman.

If the "points for" question(s) isn't linked back here within a couple of days, somebody drop me a note here.  Thanks.

SpideyMod
Community Support Moderator @Experts Exchange
0
 

Expert Comment

by:SpideyMod
ID: 8261034
I have performed the split at darexx's request.

TroutOz, points for you can be collected at:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Networking/Microsoft_Network/Q_20572923.html

SpideyMod
Community Support Moderator @Experts Exchange
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