Unable to see Win 10 PCs in the network

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  1. Posts : 83
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       #1

    Unable to see Win 10 PCs in the network


    I just had some windows updates installed (and a Unifi controller update) and for some reason, I cannot see my wireless laptop in Network shares in File Explorer from the wired PC. And from my wireless laptop, I cannot see the wired PC in File Explorer. Previously, I had no problem seeing either computer in File Explorer.

    And to make it even more weird, I can see both computers and get into the files from my Android phone connected to wifi and using a file explorer app. I've rebooted, run the networking troubleshooter and nothing has fixed the issue yet. I also tried disabling the Windows firewall and that didn't seem to help either (unless I needed to reboot afterwards... which I did not do).

    Anyone having this issue and figured out how to restore the ability to get into the Windows shares on each connected computer? I cannot run my sync program to sync files and would like to get this fixed asap.
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  2. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,929
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #2

    Hi, It seems you previously had sharing set up and working successfully, but that it now does not after
    some windows updates
    (which?)

    What is your Windows build? (This is requested specifically when you create your post).

    Have you checked the resouces here:
    Lets put together a troubleshooting list for Windows networking

    And note that sometimes it can take up to 30 mins - or more- for a machine to be 'seen' or 'removed' from Networking. Apparently this is an aspect of the way Windows implements this- termed the 'master browser'.

    I sometimes find the name of another PC is shown after being turned on, but cannot be accessed until I run the trouble shooter. This reports nothing done, but then the remote PC is accessible.

    Very much less than ideal.
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  3. Samuria's Avatar
    Posts : 6,040
    windows 10
       #3

    Can you connect via ip as that doesn't use master browser
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  4. Posts : 83
    Windows 10 Pro x64
    Thread Starter
       #4

    dalchina said:
    Hi, It seems you previously had sharing set up and working successfully, but that it now does not after (which?)

    What is your Windows build? (This is requested specifically when you create your post).

    Have you checked the resouces here:
    Lets put together a troubleshooting list for Windows networking

    And note that sometimes it can take up to 30 mins - or more- for a machine to be 'seen' or 'removed' from Networking. Apparently this is an aspect of the way Windows implements this- termed the 'master browser'.

    I sometimes find the name of another PC is shown after being turned on, but cannot be accessed until I run the trouble shooter. This reports nothing done, but then the remote PC is accessible. Very much less than ideal.
    The build on the wired PC is 1903/18362.657. It had a Windows update yesterday, iirc.

    Laptop build is 1903/18363.720 on a Dell 7577. It had an Intel update yesterday for several things including the wireless adapter (Intel AC-8265).

    I just checked and now the laptop sees the MainPC, but the MainPC still says it's can't access the laptop. The laptop shows up in Windows Explorer on the wired PC, but if I click on it, I get an error and the detail says the network path cannot be found.

    And yet I can ping the laptop from wired PC cmd prompt. The laptop can also ping the wired PC. Both have private network profiles enabled with discover and file/printer sharing enabled.

    I played a little with services.msc yesterday and the 2 function discovery services. They are both on automatic. I changed them to automatic (delay) but no change in behavior, so I changed them back. I also looked into turning Windows features on/off and SMB cfs file sharing but saw no change.

    Maybe I'll try another reboot of the main PC and see if that does its usual miracle work.

    Back shortly.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Samuria said:
    Can you connect via ip as that doesn't use master browser
    Would I just post the ip in a browser window to try?
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  5. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,929
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #5

    t if I click on it, I get an error and the detail says the network path cannot be found.
    As I suggested, I think, try then running the troubleshooter and let it complete.

    The try accessing the PC.
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  6. Posts : 83
    Windows 10 Pro x64
    Thread Starter
       #6

    I've run the troubleshooter with no luck. I'll check out that link you referenced above. But it's frustrating because everything was working perfectly... until. And I have no idea what could have changed making me spend an inordinate amount of time trying to fix something that wasn't broken, but now is and for unknown reasons.

    For the record, I can ping either computer, but neither computer shows up in Windows Explorer. Sneakernet is my only way to sync files at the moment, so I'm hoping to avoid that if I can get these computers to restore contact again.

    Edit: looking over the Turn Windows features on/off, I found SMB Direct was unchecked on the wired PC. I don't know if that's a recent change or if it's been like that all along. Both the wired PC and the laptop run Win 10 Pro x64. The laptop already had that setting checked.

    I'll reboot both computers again and see if that changes anything.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Update: I rebooted both computers. Then I tried to ping the laptop, but that failed. I pinged the wired PC from the laptop successfully. So I tried to ping the laptop again and this time it worked.

    Neither computer shows in Windows explorer of the other computer. But I can put the IP address in WE and get to the files on either computer. So that answers the question @Samuria asked. But I'm not sure what that tells me either.

    Edit: I just discovered an interesting tidbit. From the wired PC, I can ping the laptop using the ip address. But I can't ping it using the laptop name.

    From the laptop, I can ping the wired PC using either the IP address or the wired PC name. Does that tell us anything?

    Edit: this just gets more confusing. Now my Android phone using a file explorer app can now only get into the wired PC and can't connect to the laptop. Earlier, I could get into the file system of either computer.
    Last edited by speedlever; 29 Mar 2020 at 11:34.
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  7. JackHughs's Avatar
    Posts : 166
    Windows 10 Pro 1909
       #7

    Samuria advised you that accessing the networked computers using IP addresses does not involve the master browser.

    Your networked computers will not show up in File Explorer until File Explorer is notified of their existence by the master browser. And, it takes a little time for networked windows computers to negotiate among themselves and choose which one will be the master browser.

    Turn on both machines and make sure that neither can go to sleep. Wait about one-half hour, give or take, for the two machines to figure out which one will be the master browser and for the master browser to notify each machine of the other's presence on the LAN.

    JackHughs
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  8. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,929
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #8

    And have you also run through the list of settings in this and related tutorials as per my post #2?
    Share Files and Folders Over a Network in Windows 10
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  9. Posts : 83
    Windows 10 Pro x64
    Thread Starter
       #9

    JackHughs said:
    Samuria advised you that accessing the networked computers using IP addresses does not involve the master browser.

    Your networked computers will not show up in File Explorer until File Explorer is notified of their existence by the master browser. And, it takes a little time for networked windows computers to negotiate among themselves and choose which one will be the master browser.

    Turn on both machines and make sure that neither can go to sleep. Wait about one-half hour, give or take, for the two machines to figure out which one will be the master browser and for the master browser to notify each machine of the other's presence on the LAN.

    JackHughs
    Jack, I've been using these computers together for this purpose for about 2 years. So having this connectivity issue out of the blue is taxing my few remaining brain cells. While on AC power, neither computer is set to sleep.. except for the display... which shouldn't matter.

    The laptop is back to seeing the wired PC and can get into the files. The wired PC shows the laptop, but cannot access the files. It just gives a network error.

    Maybe I've done something dumb. Who knows. But I remain stumped how to regain connectivity between the two.

    I'll leave both running for a bit (the wired PC normally runs 24/7 and runs the controller for my network gear) and see if that all of a sudden makes any changes. I don't expect it will since I've been working this since yesterday with both computers up. But who knows?

    I just suspect something between the updates (Windows and Intel updates) and my attempts to get them back working.

    I have Win 10 pro x64 on both. I have SMB direct enabled on both in Windows features. And in services.msc, I have both functiondiscovery services running and set to automatic (default, I think).

    And of course I have private networks enabled with discovery and file/printer sharing enabled on both too. Just to lay the groundwork.

    - - - Updated - - -

    dalchina said:
    And have you also run through the list of settings in this and related tutorials as per my post #2?
    Share Files and Folders Over a Network in Windows 10
    Yes, I did look at that. Apologies if I didn't mention that before. Because I sync files between these computers, I use advanced sharing and enable all permissions for both computers so my sync program can replace the older files with the newer files.

    One quick file sharing question for Windows... if I enable file sharing for the drive (D:\, for example), does that share all folders and files in the drive? Or do I have to individually share each individual folder, recognizing that sub-folders adopt the privileges of the top folder. I can't remember if Windows sharing works that way on the drive level or not.
    ***********************************
    Edit: it's been an hour or so. The wired PC sees the laptop but still refuses to connect to what shows in Windows Explorer. But I can still input the \\IP address of the laptop in the search bar of WE and it goes right to the files without issue.
    Last edited by speedlever; 29 Mar 2020 at 18:02.
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  10. JackHughs's Avatar
    Posts : 166
    Windows 10 Pro 1909
       #10

    I experienced exactly the same condition you described in your last post. After trying everything, I assumed that something was broken in the OS and resigned myself to typing \\laptopname\Users in the desktop's file explorer to access the laptop shares.

    After about a week, the error message went away and all has been good since.

    Windows networking is crazy-making sometimes.

    JackHughs
      My Computer


 
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