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Seeing Computers in Network Neighborhood when server is at one end of the tunnel and workstations and printers are at the other end.

Posted on 2008-06-16
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Last Modified: 2010-05-18
The situation is two Linksys BEFSX41 routers each have a static IP address.  The VPN tunnel is open and a POS system is functioning.
The server end of the secure group is 192.168.132.xx and the workstation end of the tunnel [remote to server is 192.168.133.xx.

The server is Windows 2003 using a workgroup.  All workstations are members of the same workgroup, and are running XP PRO SP2.  The workstations in the 192.168.133.xx group can see each other and can share items, but the server 192.168.132.2 is not visible.  The remote and secure groups are correct on the VPN setup.

Is it possible for the server and remote stations to be mapped to allow printing and file sharing?  If how?
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Question by:wilf_thorburn
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Expert Comment

by:billwharton
ID: 21798734
The most gracious way to accomplish this is to get away from the workgroup model. You should set up some sort of name resolution platform and DNS is the best. What's keeping you from deploying active directory? If not DNS, research WINS and that may be an alternative for you
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Author Comment

by:wilf_thorburn
ID: 21800068
I have forwarded the comments to the POS support people for AD consideration.  I did research WINs and added the remote computers to the server WINS, enabled NetBios over TCP/IP, and added the server address to each workstation.  There is no difference.  The work stations at their site can see each other and see the shared files and printers.  The server can see the workstations in the workgroup, but cannot access them [error says do not have access permsions] and the workstations can see the server but again cannot access it.
The POS system works for sending sales data to the server [bbiterm program is pointing to 192.168.132.2 which is the server, and the station is 192.168.133.3.  The tunnel is letting that flow through, but will not allow shared items to be seen.  The routers are BESFX41 Linksys routers.  Linksys do not have a solution other than to downgrade the firmware from 1.51.15 to 1.50.18.  I can try that another time.
I can ping both ways without any difficulty.

Can you think of anything in the networking that would cause this?  I can use a laptop at either end by changing the IP to match.  DHCP is turned off at both ends.
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Accepted Solution

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billwharton earned 500 total points
ID: 21801915
networking wise, it seems fine. Honestly, workgroup model;s have never worked well and that's why active directory was introduced in the first place. I would still suggest moving to a domain model - you'll have error-free sharing of files and resources then and you'll also be able to set up user/group permissions, group policies and be a lot more in control
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Author Comment

by:wilf_thorburn
ID: 21804908
I will accept this as final answer, and if other issues arise, I will resubmit.  Thanks for your thoughts on this.
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