Master Browser - which system on a LAN, how to configure?


  1. Posts : 1,194
    Windows 10 Pro
       #1

    Master Browser - which system on a LAN, how to configure?


    After reading innumerable threads in this forum as to why someone's home LAN is not working as expected, I have learned about the "master browser" that manages the connections between systems in a workgroup network. In all the years I have worked with Windows, workgroup networking causes me the most issues.

    I was wondering if issues with the master browser configuration, etc, are the root cause of many people's issues, including mine. So I have these questions.
    • How do I identify the system that is currently running the master browser?
    • When a new system joins the LAN, or is rebooted, how can I be sure that the master browser knows about that machine?
    • If the system running the master browser is rebooted, what happens with the master browser?
    • If the system running the master browser goes offline, what happens with the master browser?
    • Are there any utilities or cmd-box commands to manage the master browser?
      My Computers


  2. Posts : 11,211
    Windows / Linux : Arch Linux
       #2

    x509 said:
    After reading innumerable threads in this forum as to why someone's home LAN is not working as expected, I have learned about the "master browser" that manages the connections between systems in a workgroup network. In all the years I have worked with Windows, workgroup networking causes me the most issues.

    I was wondering if issues with the master browser configuration, etc, are the root cause of many people's issues, including mine. So I have these questions.
    • How do I identify the system that is currently running the master browser?
    • When a new system joins the LAN, or is rebooted, how can I be sure that the master browser knows about that machine?
    • If the system running the master browser is rebooted, what happens with the master browser?
    • If the system running the master browser goes offline, what happens with the master browser?
    • Are there any utilities or cmd-box commands to manage the master browser?
    Hi there

    @x509

    if Non Windows system e.g LAN using samba

    look in samba.cnf (samba config file usually in folder /etc/samba)

    set in global section (the section marked [global]

    ...........


    # local master = when set to no, Samba does not become the master browser on
    # your network. When set to yes, normal election rules apply.
    #
    # os level = determines the precedence the server has in master browser
    # elections. The default value should be reasonable.
    #
    # preferred master = when set to yes, Samba forces a local browser election at
    # start up (and gives itself a slightly higher chance of winning the election).
    #

    local master = yes
    preferred master = yes
    os level = 25


    ...............................

    set the os level to an appropriate value --if you have more than one NAS (non windows system) the highest OS level "wins".

    As far as all windows systems are concerned I think it's a case of "Smith and Wesson always beats 4 aces" ==probably the Windows system that boots first is the master. I can't see any Windows config file to set the master browser.

    If the master browser goes offline then the windows system should take over but I don't know as all my Linux systems run 24/7 --it's only my Windows systems that get re-booted frequently.

    If a new Linux / NAS type system, joins the Lan it's easy to see the status -- type as root (or sudo) systemctl status nmb l
    that will show you what you need.

    Just running 1 NAS system - so no Windows currently

    console shows :

    Master Browser - which system on a LAN, how to configure?-screenshot_20191005_205638.png

    cheers
    jimbo
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 6,979
    windows 10
       #3
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 1,194
    Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #4

    Thanks. I'm running an all-Windows network, no NAS's, etc. Sometimes I think that whenever I have a question about some utility, I should first look at nirsoft.net. The guy is amazing and I'm surprised he doesn't charge for his utilities.

    If I could speak with him, I would say "Todah rabah!"
      My Computers


  5. Posts : 8,700
    Mac OS Catalina
       #5

    I have my registry setting for Master Browser set to Auto and have not had any issues. I use Windows Firewall and have not made any tweaks to the OS. It is when people tweak their OS or use programs or features that can mess things up in networking, is where problems occur.

    I just found out that with WSL, if you are placing a Router behind your ISP provided Gateway while in DMZ mode on said Gateway, you cannot connect to any servers for Ubuntu to update and have to use manual DNS in your device, not use an automatic DNS.
      My Computer


 

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