Mac OSX 10.6.8 loses connection to Windows 7 Pro File Share on a regular basis

I've got a very basic Windows 7 Pro machine that has a SHARED folder that i'm using for shared file access. All Windows PC's can connect fine to it all day long. However, the 2 MACs (10.6.8) in the environment will sporadically lose connect to the Shared Directory.

If we reboot the Windows Machine, it will allow the MAC to reconnect to it....but eventually it will time-out (or whatever) - and will require a reboot of the Windows 7 Pro machine to re-establish connection.

The Windows 7 Pro machine was recently put in as a more stable option for the Seagate NAS that was in-place (I believe that is a Linux environment - but anyhow, this never happened with the old Seagate NAS system - so It seems to me there is a service of something that is stopping on the Windows side that prohibits the connection after a while.

Any thoughts would be appreciated - as this has been plaguing us since the Windows 7 Pro machine was installed
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Tim LapinComputer Consultant (Desktop analyst)Commented:
Quick question:  Is the Windows 7 machine set to sleep or spin down its hard drives at all?  If so, force the system to never sleep or spin down its drives.

My thinking is that there might be a difference to the "wake on LAN" signals between the two systems.

Another thought:  you mention the possibility of a process stopping.  Take a snapshot of the processes running when the share is working and again after it fails.  What, if anything, is different?  The system's event viewer might provide some clues.

On the Mac side, use the Console app to discover the equivalent log entries.  Perhaps together, the two sets of logs will provide the answer.

Also, 10.6.8 is a very old operating system, about 7 years or so.  Can this machine be upgraded?   Perhaps any of the newer OSes might provide a more stable connection.  Please be aware, however, that there are a few breaks in the evolutionary chain of Macs in which a given mac can only be upgraded so far.  Not all macs from that era can be pushed beyond 10.7 (Lion) for example.
teks14Author Commented:
fyi - I have made sure the Windows 7 machine has all 'Power-Options' turned off - so it should be nailed-up to the network all the time...the Windows 7 machines do not lose the connection.

I will try to get a snapshot of the services to add to the post as well
Tim LapinComputer Consultant (Desktop analyst)Commented:
One other thing to try to help narrow down the issue is to use another account to see if the problem is system wide or affects only that one user.  Is there another user account on the Mac?  If not, create one.  When the problem occurs on account #1, switch user to account #2 and see if the same problem happens.

If the problem goes away, then there is most likely a preference file that is getting corrupted.

Finally, there are some basic issues that have plagued SMB connections on Macs for years.
The 7 Worst Nightmares of a Sysadmin

Fear not! To defend your business’ IT systems we’re going to shine a light on the seven most sinister terrors that haunt sysadmins. That way you can be sure there’s nothing in your stack waiting to go bump in the night.

Apple has been messing up SMB connections a lot lately.  One option to work around that is to Install open sourced SAMBA, and connect to windows using that instead of Apple's version.  You can install it through Homebrew or Mac Ports.
teks14Author Commented:
Serialband - any more info on Homebrew or Mac Ports would be helpful....I'm assuming this installs on the MAC and I would then use their GUI to connect to the Windows Shared drive?

Any elaboration would be appreciated....thx
teks14Author Commented:
BTW - this is still on on-going issue....the MAC retains a connection to the WIn7 Pro SHARE for about 4 hours - then disconnects.....after rebooting with Win7 machine, the connection from MAC -> Win7 SHARE is restored....temporarily of course....then the cycle repeats...
I haven't used MacPorts in a while.  I'm using Homebrew from
Neither brew or MacPorts are GUI based.  SAMBA is also command line based.

Are you Macs on Wifi or on cabled ethernet.
teks14Author Commented:
MACS are on Cabled Ethernet btw....
teks14Author Commented:
I changed these two settings and it fixed the problem dead in its tracks:


(I set mine to 3)
Your choices for this registry key are 1, 2 and 3.
    1 = Minimize Memory Used
    2 = Balance
    3 = Maximize Throughput for File Sharing and Maximize
        Throughput for Network Applications

Your choices for this registry key are 0 and 1.
(I set mine to 1)
    1 = Maximize Throughput for File Sharing
    0 = Maximize Throughput for Network Applications

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
teks14Author Commented:
Fixed the issue
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Microsoft Legacy OS

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.