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Slow netbios name resolution after installing new router

Posted on 2005-04-14
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Last Modified: 2013-12-23
Hi there,

Since swapping my ISDN router for a Belkin Pre-N wireless router + Linksys ADSL2 modem, I've found that when I use Internet Explorer to browse to my server over the LAN using it's netbios name - http://myserver/ - my intranet site is very slow (takes about 6 seconds to get a simple directory index). However, when I use the server's IP address, - http://192.168.2.2/ - the intranet is as fast as ever.

Also, when I open VS.NET applications from the server, it takes ages to open them; I suspect this is because it's opening files using the netbios name as well.

Has anyone got any idea what might be causing this? It's making my work very time consuming!

Many thanks,

Bluze
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Question by:Bluze
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Assisted Solution

by:nazirahmed
nazirahmed earned 900 total points
ID: 13784176
Hi
Have you tried hosts file or lmhosts file static enteries?
regards
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Expert Comment

by:Carlo-Giuliani
ID: 13785464
You obviously have a name resolution problem.  However, it is not clear where the delay is.
  - What is your operating system?  WinNT4? Win2K? WinXP?
  - Do you have any WINS or DNS server addresses configured?  
  - Is NETBIOS name resolution enabled?  What is your node type?
  - do you have any DNS suffixes configured?
To get the answers to these questions, issue the command >IPCONFIG /ALL

To help determine where the delay is:  what happens if you use a DNS name for your server (e.g. http://myserver.domain.local) ?

To understand all the steps that your PC goes through to resolve a name, read http://www.comptechdoc.org/os/windows/wintcp/wtcpname.html

Now you just have to figure out which step is taking so long!  There are many possibilties
 - you have a WINS or DNS server configured that does not respond
 - you have several DNS suffixes configured, so the client tries all of them
....etc...
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by:nazirahmed
ID: 13785741
Bluze
i think you dont have a local dns or wins, if you have, is there anything changed after you swaped the routers?
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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13790697
Hi there,

Thanks for your comments; I've not got active directory set up; I can't call the DNS name for the server as I have the PC's networked as a workgroup, not a domain.

I don't have WINS set up or configured; I think that my router is set up as the DHCP server, the idea being that then all machines can use the internet independantly of the main server - Any reasons why I shouldn't do this?

I've not tried a hosts file or lmhosts file either, for the same reason. My thinking is: If I didn't need to set it up before I got the new router, surely I shouldn't need to set it up now?

Thanks all, I look forward to your follow up comments.

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by:Carlo-Giuliani
ID: 13791996
DNS is not dependent on Active Directory  (it's the other way around....AD depends on DNS).

You are almost certainly using DNS for internet name resolution, and you probably have a default DNS suffix on your PCs.  I am guessing that the delay is caused by attempts to resolve the name by DNS.   Note that, if your router is providing DHCP (which is probably correct), it is probably the router that defines your client "node type" and the DNS configuration.  So changing your router could change your name resolution process.

If you have just one server and a handfull of PCs, I would put the server name in the hosts file....you will need to know the DNS suffix configured on your PC.

Please post the results from an IPCONFIG /ALL command on one of your PCs, and tell what what the operating system is.

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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13804328
Thanks for following this up:

Results from ipconfig /all (Windows XP Pro machine):

Windows IP Configuration

Host Name: pc1
Primage Dns suffix:
Node type: Unknown
IP routing enabled: No
WINS Proxy Enabled: No
DNS Suffix Search list: Belkin

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix: Belkin
Description: Realtek RTL8139/810x Family Fast Ethernet NIC
Physical Address: 00-50-fc-aa-69-db
Dhcp enabled: Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled: Yes
IP Address: 192.168.2.2
Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0
Default Gateway: 192.168.2.1
DHCP Server: 192.168.2.1
DNS Servers: 192.168.2.1
Lease obtained: 18 April 2005 08:30:44
Lease expires 19 January 2038 04:14:07

192.168.2.1 is the IP address of my router.
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Accepted Solution

by:
Carlo-Giuliani earned 1100 total points
ID: 13807538
OK, I see the router is setting a DNS suffix of "Belkin", so when you enter the name myserver your PC will attempt to find  "myserver.belkin"....which does not exist.   The strange thing is your "node type" is "unknown", so I'm not sure what order your PC will follow for name resolution.

I have three suggestions...try any *one* of them.
 1 - Manually enable NETBios over TCP/IP resolution (this should change your node type)
 2 - Add an entry to C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS\ETC\HOSTS file - " x.x.x.x myserver.belkin"
 3 - Add an entry to C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS\ETC\LMHOSTS file - "x.x.x.x myserver"

To manually enable NetBIOS over TCP/IP, open the properties of the PC network connection, select TCP/IP properties, , select the "Advanced Button" and then the "WINS" tab, and Enable NetBIOS over TCP/IP.

If you try the lmhosts method, you will probably have to create the file.  You will find a file named "lmhosts.sam" which is just a sample file containing only comments.  A real lmhosts file has no suffix.

0
 

Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13813441
Yes, adding an lmhosts file to each of the PC's seems to have worked around the problem, thankyou!

My only slight concern is that because all of the IP addresses on all of the PCs including the server are dynamic, if the server changes it's IP address during a reboot, I'll have to edit all of the lmhosts files.

Any thoughts on ways round this, or am I going to have to switch to using DNS instead of NETBIOS in the long term?

Thanks again,

Bluze
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Expert Comment

by:nazirahmed
ID: 13816158
Hi

sorry for late reply. my first suggestion of puting to hosts or lmhosts file was to see if that fix the problem, mean u have name resolution problem. Now, your router issuing ip addresses and at the same time your router is connected to the internet as well and i think your ISDN router was not issuing ip addresses in the past, or was it?
Belkin is the router ur using, and when it allocate ip addresses, it represents itself as domain suffix, and also if you look at the ip config, you will see your dns server is DNS Servers: 192.168.2.1 which is your router as well, so the router try to resolve the http request for your clients, which creates delay.

Run ipconfig /release on all the pcs, and just add the intranet server address to the HOSTS file on each machine, bcoz thats the machine you want to access over http, if enable netbios over tcp/ip, that will speed up the host name reolution using netbios name.

hope it will help.
cheers
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Expert Comment

by:nazirahmed
ID: 13816185
otherwise, you will have to setup dns server and setup forward look up(isp dsn) for the internet requests, which maybe a bit over head for your small network.
cheers
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Expert Comment

by:Carlo-Giuliani
ID: 13821384

You should not use DHCP for server addresses....you should use fixed addresses for the server(s).

However, did you try manually enabling NETBIOS over TCP/IP....this should change the order of name resolution mechansims, and so speed up your name resolution *without* setting any hosts or lmhosts file.
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Expert Comment

by:nazirahmed
ID: 13822116
Yyes it will speed up the name resolution for netbios names, the question here is http request and that is only for the server which is an intranet server and accessed over http,  its best to put the server host name and ip address in the host file (of course you have to setup static ip in this case on the server as its always best practice to have static ip address on the servers), you will still leave the clients to get ip from dhcp, if you have xp clients, leave the default settings for the name resolution which are importted from from dhcp along with ip, if on win2k enable netbios over ip. Keeping in mind, intranet server is accessed over http:\\servername NOT \\servername to access the intranet content which probably is html, dhmtl, asl or any other web format.

Still have to see the response for my last post <<< your ISDN router was not issuing ip addresses in the past, or was it?>>>
 


cheers

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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13822294
Hi there,

Thanks loads for the responses; Sorry for the delay in replying.

I'll answer all of your questions in turn:

"your ISDN router was not issuing ip addresses in the past, or was it?"
I'm not sure if the ISDN router was issuing IP addresses previously - it was a Netgear RT338 and I didn't configure its DHCP feature when I set it up, so I don't know what the default was.

"did you try manually enabling NETBIOS over TCP/IP?"
Yes, I tried this suggestion first, but it didn't seem to make any difference. I've left this setting on in case it's helping.

"Run ipconfig /release on all the pcs, and just add the intranet server address to the HOSTS file on each machine"
Yes, this works really well - I had previously tried adding myserver to the lmhosts file, but trying both of your suggestions to add myserver.belkin to the hosts file has speeded it up completely - possibly faster than it was with the previous router.

OK, I'd call that problem solved, thank you both loads for your time.

How should I assign the points? Carlo did give the the specific answer first, but nazirahmed also gave time and energy?

Thanks,

Bluze



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Expert Comment

by:Carlo-Giuliani
ID: 13824953
To satisfy my own curiosity....when you manually enabled the NETBIOS over TCP/IP, did the "node type" listed by ipconfig change, or is it still "unknown".
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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13828420
Hi there,

Ah yes, the node type - It's still 'Unknown" for some reason.

How do you think I should allocate these points Carlo?
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Expert Comment

by:Carlo-Giuliani
ID: 13828491
Hmmm...I wish I knew why your node type is unknown....

I'd prefer not to give an opinion on the points...it's up to you.
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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13828659
OK, well I think I'm going to split it 400 - 100 - As carlo gave me the specifics on how to add to the host files, and nazirahmed did mention host files and so was on the way to giving me the full answer, if that makes sense.

Hope that's cool with you guys - And thanks to both of you for your help.
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Expert Comment

by:nazirahmed
ID: 13832047
Hi Bluze
I think you havent done a fair job here. enabling netbios over tcp was Carlo's suggestion and according to your post:
<<
"did you try manually enabling NETBIOS over TCP/IP?"
Yes, I tried this suggestion first, but it didn't seem to make any difference. I've left this setting on in case it's helping.>>

My suggestion regarding host file, your dhcp sever and your setup of router were all True but i cant understand how can you say that Carlo gave you specific answer? No offence to carlos..sorry

Your current setup is host file enteries on clients, clients getting ip from router and intranet server setup with static ip..is that true? please read my posts again, you will find that you have not done a fair job when alloting points.

And if everything works better than before, then you shouldnt be giving us 'B' grade, it should be 'A'

Pleae have a look on your comments and also see who suggested this

<<Run ipconfig /release on all the pcs, and just add the intranet server address to the HOSTS file on each machine"
Yes, this works really well - I had previously tried adding myserver to the lmhosts file, but trying both of your suggestions to add myserver.belkin to the hosts file has speeded it up completely - possibly faster than it was with the previous router.>>

Best regards
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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13840971
Hi Nazirahmed,

Sorry you feel I didn't distribute the points fairly - I did it how I did because Carlos Gave me the specific answer:

2 - Add an entry to C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS\ETC\HOSTS file - " x.x.x.x myserver.belkin"

Which solved the problem; You had asked about lmhosts files first, granted, but I didn't know what that meant. I had the problem solved before you came back and posted more solutions.

Now, if you don't think that's fair, then I want to sort it, because I really do appreciate the help; Any idea how I can redistribute the points? What you you think would be fair?

Also, I read the guide to grading, and agree I should have graded an A - i was mistaken, sorry.

If a moderator can tell me how to make these amendments, that would be great!
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by:nazirahmed
ID: 13851084
Hi Bluze

Did you added this entery to the hosts file?  " x.x.x.x myserver.belkin" as per Carlos suggestion?

My first post
<<Have you tried hosts file or lmhosts file static enteries? >>

first i pointed to hosts file but i wasnt sure if its intranet server only OR browsing on machines generally, thats why i mentioned lmhosts as well. By the way, adding hosts (not Fully Qualified domain names) names to the hosts can also help the browsing of pcs/servers.

My first suggestion was hosts files, bcoz thats the very basic way to go with name resolutions, of course i needed further information wether you have DNS, Wins, how your old router was allocating iP addreses etc etc. and nearly all of my queries were in right direction.

I did not mean to be harsh or wanted all of the points, but you know its a free forum where we spent time free of harge, and i really dont mind doing this, the only thing we look forward is appreciation in the form of points.

Its upto you to allocate points but my concern was distribution of points, if you think you have done fairly, i cant do anything, except expressing my concerns.

Thanks for your time and replying.

Best regards
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Author Comment

by:Bluze
ID: 13853392
OK, I've split the points down the middle with a slight weight to Carlo for the reasons stated earlier. I've also graded A this time, to correct my mistake.

I hope that's OK with everyone now, and thanks one more time for all your help.

Oh, just to answer your last question Naziramed, yes, I did add the entry to the Hosts file, and it fixed the problem.

Cheers,

Bluze.
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