Vista and XP cannot access each other (ping ip works; ping name not working)

Posted on 2010-11-27
Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have three computers. A vista desktop, vista laptop, and an xp desktop.  The vistas both have home premium and the xp is home edition.  I have a netgear router.  Internet is working fine with all of them.  The vista laptop and the xp can share files with each other and ping using the ip and computer names, but the desktop and xp machines cannot.  I can ping back and forth between the two using the ip address, but I can't ping using the names on either the vista desktop or xp.  When I try to map a network drive on any of the computers, I can see all 3 of them. However, I can't access the xp computer with the vista desktop and I can't access the vista desktop on the xp.  I've been comparing the two vistas, but can't find anything different in the network settings.  I've installed all the windows updates and ran malwarebytes, spybot, and microsoft security essentials to get rid of any viruses and such.  They are all on the same workgroup.

Any ideas what's going on here?  

I included a screen shot of the error I get when I try to map a network drive to the xp from the vista desktop.


 vista to xp error
Question by:deer22
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
  • 6
  • 3

Expert Comment

ID: 34223665
In order to access files on the vista machine you will have to create an account to login with. Create a user on each machine and log onto it from the other machine with that account. Save the credentials.

You do no have to have logins at the PC but you must have user accounts. Once you create the Account you can have the PC log into it's main account automatically. Click start, run, and then type < control userpasswords2 >. Highlight the main account and uncheck the box. In this way you can have multiple user accounts but auto login to the main one. The other accounts are only there so that they can authenticate remote shares and whatever.


Author Comment

ID: 34223695
If that's so, then why does the laptop connect without user accounts?  The xp can share files with the vista laptop.  The vista laptop and vista desktop are both setup the same from what I can tell.  

Author Comment

ID: 34223701
It's seems like there's something wrong with the host name recognition on the vista desktop keeping it from allowing it and the xp from accessing each other...?
Microsoft Certification Exam 74-409

Veeam® is happy to provide the Microsoft community with a study guide prepared by MVP and MCT, Orin Thomas. This guide will take you through each of the exam objectives, helping you to prepare for and pass the examination.


Author Comment

ID: 34223882
I figured out that I can share files if I map the drives using the ip address on both the vista desktop and xp.

I guess this works, but I would still like to know why they're not mapping using the computer names?

Anyone know what the problem would be?
LVL 17

Accepted Solution

Nik earned 500 total points
ID: 34228259
Strange issue, but you can fix it this way.

Navigate to:

Edit the hosts file and type the names and IP addresses of the PC's that are not resolvable by name:

example      DADS

Save the file and try to ping the other PC by name. If it still isn't working, restart your computer.

Author Comment

ID: 34236179
I'm thinking i got a virus keeping it from using host names.  Your solution might work if I could change the file, but vista won't let me for one and even if it did work the ip addresses could change like they did on me today.  Can i make them static?  I've gotten around vista not letting you save files in system32 before but it's been awhile since i've done that...i'd have to figure it out again......?
LVL 17

Expert Comment

ID: 34236609
Right click on the hosts file and click Security tab.
Add the Users group Modify permission on the file.
Reopen the file and edit it as mentioned above.

I can't remember, but on Windows Vista, you might need to take ownership of the hosts file before you will be able to change permissions.

Security tab | Advanced | Edit | Change owner then hit apply!

Author Comment

ID: 34239394
OK, I'll try it when I get home tonight.  Also, is there a way to make the ip address static?  I tried to do it in the general tab of the TCP/IPv4 properties by changing the ip, subnet, and gateway to what was there when I ran ipconfig.  After I did then I couldn't get connected to the internet.  Do I need to put in the DNS server address too?  Not sure where I get that at if so?
LVL 17

Assisted Solution

Nik earned 500 total points
ID: 34240408
You should be able to use the static IP address.
Have you entered the gateway address (IP address of your router)?
You can also enter DNS address (IP address of your router).

Author Closing Comment

ID: 34244626
Worked great once I took control of the hosts file.  This link shows you how:

I made the ip addresses static also following your instructions.

Thanks a million!

Featured Post

Free Tool: ZipGrep

ZipGrep is a utility that can list and search zip (.war, .ear, .jar, etc) archives for text patterns, without the need to extract the archive's contents.

One of a set of tools we're offering as a way to say thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Suggested Solutions

Title # Comments Views Activity
VLAN Questions 3 70
How to extreme from web browser to the internet 2 49
VPN Exposure 19 45
Does a VFP app correctly runs on a wifi network? 8 16
Meet the world's only “Transparent Cloud™” from Superb Internet Corporation. Now, you can experience firsthand a cloud platform that consistently outperforms Amazon Web Services (AWS), IBM’s Softlayer, and Microsoft’s Azure when it comes to CPU and …
If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem.   Tips on how to secure IoT devices, even the dumbest ones, so they can't be used as part of a DDoS botnet.  Use PRTG Network Monitor as one of the building blocks, to detect unusual…
The Task Scheduler is a powerful tool that is built into Windows. It allows you to schedule tasks (actions) on a recurring basis, such as hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, at log on, at startup, on idle, etc. This video Micro Tutorial is a brief intro…
This video gives you a great overview about bandwidth monitoring with SNMP and WMI with our network monitoring solution PRTG Network Monitor ( If you're looking for how to monitor bandwidth using netflow or packet s…

752 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question