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Workstation not connecting to Server

Posted on 2004-11-19
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
I have a Network running on Small Business Server 2003. One of my XP Pro workstaions is refusing to connect to the server. All the network settings are correct. I have internet access, access to other workstations, and even the ability to ping the server... but it tells me that the server and the networked drives are inaccessible. My user settings on the SBS server are all correct. password is correct... I don't know what else to look at.
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Question by:kdomiano
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Expert Comment

by:shahrial
ID: 12626357
Is Windows XP service pack 2 installed?
If yes, you may wish to disable temporarily the Windows Firewall on the Local Area Connection interface...and try again.

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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12626381
no it's not.
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by:JRaster
ID: 12626502
If your on a domain, and it was once joined to the domain, try setting the workstation back to a workgroup, reboot, and readd to the domain.
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Expert Comment

by:kkohl
ID: 12626533
Hi,

How are you logging on?  Locally or with a domain account?

A local account would most likely allow internet access and network communication (ping).
You didn't mention an error during login or inability to log in with a domain account, but if you are successfully logging in with a domain account that means its with permissions and you should check all of your associated user groups and account permissions settings.


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by:JohnCarlMorgan
ID: 12626713
My first thought is that the machine and the other workstations it is able to communicate with are communicating through netbios, IPX/SPX or other protocol which the server doesn't have.  And it is actually a configuration problem with TCP/IP.

The trust relationship may have failed between the workstation & the domain (as JRaster said), however it would normally tell you this (& stop you logging on) when your computer starts, despite that it's good advice and worth a try.

Other wise I would just go through a process similar to the following steps:
 PING the server.  

Check the DNS settings which could play havoc with name resolution & authentication
Try to access a share on the server via it's IP, ie. start -> run -> \\<servers ip>\sharename <- if this works but \\servername\sharename fails, it's down to DNS

Try it under a different user account if you haven't already to ensure that it's not a permissions thing.

Post more details of your troubleshooting if your still stuck.
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12629337
I'm not sure if I'm understanding all of this but here goes my clarification/explanation...

We're not using a domain. Everything is linked through the workgroup.

The networks is running on TCP/IP, no other protocol is installed. The DNS settings are correct as well as the IP Address etc... The workgroup is configured correctly. I removed everything and reentered it all.... and still nothing.

Anyone know why this stuff always seems to happen on Fridays
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Expert Comment

by:JRaster
ID: 12629762
It s a prelude to monday morning problems. =)

When you say refusing to connect to the server, does that mean this workstation can not connect to a network drive, or network printer?  
Does it pop up and ask for username and password, or give some other error?  

Have you added another username to this workstation and try to log in that way?

How many computers do you have? I might suggest you spend the time to run active directory if you have more than 3 to 5 computers.  
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by:kain21
ID: 12629954
are you getting as far as receiving a login/password prompt when attempting to connect?
if so, and your password keeps getting rejected then you may be having a problem with your lm authentication (this is how workstations authenticate in a non-domain environment)...

check the following registry entry on your SBS server...
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Control/Lsa/lmcompatibilitylevel

this should be Dword entry with a value between 0-5.

if this value is above 3 then you may be having a problem using NTLMv2 authentication from the workstation in question... try changing the value to 1 and then attempt to connect from the workstation... regardless of whether this is successful or not we need to check the same key on the workstation as well...

if this is set above 3 you may have similar situation but in reverse... let me know what the settings are and I'll try to help you out...
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12629955
it's not connecting to the network drive, also... if i go through my network places it tells me server1 is not accessible. You do not have permission to access this network resource please contact your sys admin.

it doesn't ask for any username or password

added another user... same response...

17 computers... don't know how to run active directory

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Expert Comment

by:kain21
ID: 12629985
You have 17 computers?  How many CALs do you have installed on the server?  SBS can come with 5 or 25.  If you only have 5 then the server could refuse connections after 5 simultaneous connections.

p.s. If you don't have active directory already running on the server then you must not have installed the SBS portion of the server install package.  Running dcpromo is one of the steps of installation.
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12630010
25 Cals

I may have it installed and I just don't realize it... Understand that I didn't want to do this installation myself in the first place. Wasn't comfortable enough w/ installing and setting up the network...

It accepts my password, no errors whatsoever. You dont know there is a problem until you try to access the network drives.
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Expert Comment

by:kain21
ID: 12630040
ok... check those settings on the server... the problem more than likely is in that registry key on the server... if the workstation is having a problem with using NTLMv2 and the server requires it (which I'm pretty sure SBS 2003 does by default) then you need to lower the level of acceptable authentication on the server... I had this problem with a network we upgraded from SBS 2000... they saw the server and logged in fine but weren't able to access the drives... spent 3-4 hours on the phone with Microsoft and came up with this solution...
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12630129
It is set at 2
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by:kain21
ID: 12630211
Change the setting to 1 on the server and attempt to connect... check the setting on the workstation setting as well and set it to 1... if this works then we know its an authentication hashing problem
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Expert Comment

by:zaferus
ID: 12630262
As well in the active directory, have you deleted the computer account?  I've seen problems where a buggy account causes computer problems until you manually remove it under.

Barring that - have you tried re-imaging the system?  It could be an "undocumented feature" that will only clear up with a fresh install.
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12644627
I changed the settings on both machine to 1... didn't work

I deleted the computer account and recreated it... didn't work

I'm hoping I don't need to do a fresh install, because I don't know how to configure some of the settings for the software I use on it.

Any other ideas?
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Expert Comment

by:kain21
ID: 12644926
have you attempted a repair on the workstation?  I would try that before venturing with a complete rebuild...
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12645049
a repair? As in reinstalling windows?
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by:kain21
ID: 12645214
yeah... use the xp pro cd to perform a repair installation of windows... it would maintain your current programs... if you go through the process of doing a fresh install windows will detect that there is a an existing installation and ask you if you want to perform a repair...
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12706121
I've repaired Windows - that doesn't work. I've also changed the name of the computer to a user account that works on the server. Didn't work. Unless I'm misunderstanding the relationship between the server user name and the name of the computer? My understanding is that the Computer Name basically reaches out and searches the server user accounts for a matching account and uses those permissions? Is that correct?
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kain21 earned 1000 total points
ID: 12706208
no... if the computer is not attached to a domain then user accounts and computer accounts on the server do not matter... the only thing that would matter is permissions on the shared resources... if you didn't want to use a user account on the server to access the shared resource from a nondomain computer you would have to assign the everyone permission to the resource...

when you are attempting to join a computer to the domain the computer searches the domain controller for a computer account that matches its computer name and doesn't already have a SID attached...  If it finds an account it can use it will use that one... if it doesn't it will create one... once the computer is joined to the domain user accounts and access permission can be controlled centrally from the domain controller as long as you are logging into the domain from the workstation...
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12706275
I checked the permissions on the folders I'm trying to access... They are shared w/ everyone having the same rights....
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Expert Comment

by:zaferus
ID: 12706567
Maybe try leaving the domain (join a workgroup with the workstation); rename the workstation to something else and then trying to join the domain again.  The workstation is set to DHCP for IP and DNS right?
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Author Comment

by:kdomiano
ID: 12767640
I tried that. no luck...
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