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2008 DC computer browser service problems

Posted on 2011-02-24
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I'm having issues with the computer browser service on my network.  I have 2 Server 2008 DC's and I recently enabled the computer browser service on my primary DC to enable computer browsing through Net Neighborhood.

After enabling the computer browser service on the DC many computers are now showing up.  But, I now have tons of Event ID 8003 (browser) errors in the event log of the DC.  I ran browstat on the DC and it is hit or miss as to what it will report.  Sometimes it will report:

that the browser is NOT active on the domain

 and other times it will report:

that Browsing is active on the domain, lists 3 backup servers that are always something different and it will say it is unable to retrieve the master list.
 
Browsing appears to be working correctly with the exception of the 8003 errors in the event log and the incorrect browstat results.

 I have searched forums and MS's KB articles that explain what the service does but have found no concrete setup method.  I have added the reg entry of 'isdomainmaster' and set it to yes to no avail.

So my question is what is the typicall setup for this to work without error?
Should I disable the browser service on all machines but my DC's?  What is the proper setup to get this working correctly in a domain?
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Question by:jwmcf1
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Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 34973537
In a Domain whatever the PDC emulator is stationed at this Domain Controller should be the master browser.

You could have other stations stating they are the master browser as well which would be causing the same errors.

Make sure you have NetBios over TCP\IP enabled.

Computer browser services should be running to browse.

You could install WINS to stop any issues as well
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Author Comment

by:jwmcf1
ID: 34974310
The PDC emulator is the master browser.  When I run a browstat the PDC emulator is the master.


You could have other stations stating they are the master browser as well which would be causing the same errors.

This is exactly what I am experiencing.  Pretty much every machine on my network is stating they are the master browser with some machines more frequently popping up than others.  I stopped the browser service on my 2008 server and ran browstat again.  One of my blackberry enterprise servers was now listed and there were 173 backup browsers which is pretty much all of my workstations.  So why is this happening?  I dont want every computer in contention to be the master browser.  I assume disabling the browser service on workstations using a GPO would stop this behavior, but this service is on by default and I have seen no mention of having to do this anywhere.

Make sure you have NetBios over TCP\IP enabled.

I have done this on my primary DC with no change in behavior.  Does this need to be done on all machines?  

Computer browser services should be running to browse.

I just tested by disabling the computer browser service on my workstation and it appears that I can still browse.

You could install WINS to stop any issues as well

WINS is installed on my DC
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Accepted Solution

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Darius Ghassem earned 2000 total points
ID: 34974738
Do you have DHCP giving out WINS IP address?

Disable master browser on non master browsers

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Browser\Parameters IsDomainMaster=FALSE

You can deploy reg key through GPO as well
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