How can I make a WorkGroup Invisible on my network?

How can I make a WorkGroup Invisible on my network?

I am running Windows XP clients on a 2003 Enterprise Server. Almost every computer in the network is part of the Domain on a Class B network. But I have 6 computers in a  "WorkGroup" and I would like to make then not appear on the network when people click on their network neighborhood icon. Is there a way I can do this?

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Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
only way you can do it is disable netbios over tcp on everything on your network
Sam PanwarSr. Server AdministratorCommented:

select tcp/ip and click properties, then click the advanced button, then click the WINS tab, under netbios setting select "disable netbios over tcp/ip.
Sam PanwarSr. Server AdministratorCommented:
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Kevin CrossChief Technology OfficerCommented:
Windows 2003 AD is DNS dependent, so you don't necessarily need WINS if you don't want it.  I have unfortunately still have NT machines, so have chosen to use WINS and disabled the automatic registration of PC's into DNS; however, if you have this option enabled, you should have nothing to fear with disabling WINS.

If you are using DHCP at your location and want to do what Abs_jaipur and PeteLong are saying in mass quickly, you can check if you have capability to turn off NetBIOS on DHCP server as the default for Windows XP network settings is to have NetBIOS use settings from DHCP.
davistevAuthor Commented:
ads_jaipur,  Will this reduce functionality?
Kevin CrossChief Technology OfficerCommented:
Other options are to move the smaller amount of users to different subnet and not route NetBIOS traffic. :)

I had to setup my DC to be master browser for multiple domains, so I was wondering if was a way to exclude domains/workgroups using same way I did to add ones and doesn't seem like it but the article may still be interesting to you, especially first section talks about hiding server resources from browser if you want could also try to mask the six systems from browser list if the concern is the viewing of their shares, etc.

Anyway, good luck.  
Kevin CrossChief Technology OfficerCommented:
The systems won't be able to communicate with each other via NetBIOS over TCP/IP, so you will not get naming resolution.  Will depend on DNS.
I may be mistaken, but I thought you could stick a dollar on the end of the workgroup name to hide it from network neighbourhood.  Alternatively, if you disable the computer browser service on every machine, you'll only see your own machine in the workgroup list, but that still won;t hide the name.

I reckon $ at the end will work.
Kevin CrossChief Technology OfficerCommented:
Nice thought, hstiles.  Never tried to do that, but know it definitely works with share names. :)  Might be worth a try.  Saw one article indicating that this didn't work with workgroups like it does with folders, but it had order reversed as in front of name...thought that was just a type-o but maybe they really were trying it backwards and it does work if you put at end.

Let us know if that works, that would be interesting.
davistevAuthor Commented:
Hstiles - not bad idea. I will setup a workgroup tomorrow and test it. That would be a nice trick.  
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
Dollar signs are illegal in a netbios name
OK then, from the command line type net config server /hidden:yes on each machine you want to hide, or push the following registry settings out to all machines on your network


change value from 0 to 1

The Machine will then be invisible via network neighbourhood and you'll have to connect either by mapping a drive or UNC paths

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davistevAuthor Commented:
I have not had time to test the solutions above. I will come back to this issue soon. Thanks for the support folks.
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