Windows 10: Suddenly can't see other computers on network

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  1.    02 Aug 2018 #11

    You're right, canford--this is soooooo frustrating. It seems MS has become expert at so complexifying their systems as to make them unusable. Add to that that two installations of Windows these days do not have the same features.... Ugh.

    But I sure wish we could figure this one out.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    02 Aug 2018 #12

    It occurs to me that the answer to my problem might be in setting DNS settings, or possibly a static IP on the problematic Desktop PC. But I am not sure what settings to try changing. Any suggestions?

    Another suggestion I've read is to change the hosts file. I have experience using the hosts file to prevent the computer from going to undesirable web sites, but I think it is also possible to have it direct the computer quickly to a location without bothering with DNS. Any thoughts on this?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    03 Aug 2018 #13

    Hey bilateral,
    Going to need more info ...
    What version of windows are PC's A,B,C running ? (winkey + r ... winver)
    What type of Server/NAS is D ?
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  4.    03 Aug 2018 #14

    Thanks for responding, Eagle51. I cannot get at computers A and C at the moment, as both are being heavily used, but Laptop B (which seems like the easiest for other computers to see) is Version 1709 Build 16299. I'll check the other two later today.

    The NAS server is OpenMediaVault. It appears this server is functioning as the Master Browser, because I've identified that none of the Win 10 machines are.

    Also, I came across these two interesting pages that I am in process of checking out today.

    Computer cannot see itself and other computers cannot see it - Microsoft Community

    Check out last post from Rolando Vil. This sounds like an interesting approach, but I haven't had a chance yet to see if it works. I'll have to wait till I can restart the Desktop machine. But--notably--that machine is missing the Homegroup settings. I think this is a very recent build, so MS may have removed these services, per the posts by Momominta, who also suggests options for replacing those services: I should mention, though, that I don't use homegroup on these computers. I use user accounts and passwords.

    Windows 10 missing homegroup
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    03 Aug 2018 #15

    I cannot get at computers A and C at the moment, as both are being heavily used, but Laptop B (which seems like the easiest for other computers to see) is Version 1709 Build 16299. I'll check the other two later today.
    Ok, but knowing the windows version of each will help, as each (1709 & 1803) had different networking issues.

    1. Can you access the different PC shares in File Explorer > Address Bar by typing \\PCNAME or \\IPADDRESS ?
    PCNAME - Device Name in Settings > System > About
    IPADDRESS - example 192.168.1.4
    2. For the Win10 1803 PC's, the first thing to check is the following two services. Make sure they are running and their startup type is set to Automatic Delay.
    Function Discovery Provider Host
    Function Discovery Resource Publication

    Note: Once those two services are started it can take a minute for the other PC's to show in File Explorer > Network.

    The NAS server is OpenMediaVault. It appears this server is functioning as the Master Browser, because I've identified that none of the Win 10 machines are.
    1. You are probably right that it is the Master Browser. If you know the NAS IP Address you can open a Command Prompt as Admin and run the command > nbtstat -a ipaddress (i.e. nbtstat -a 192.168.1.1)
    2. Are you able to see/access your NAS from all your PC's ?
    3. It will also help to know what SMB version it uses and if you can configure which SMB version it uses (i.e. SMBv1 or SMBv2)

    Note: If your NAS uses SMBv1 and can not be changed to SMBv2, then you may need to check if SMBv1 is still installed/enabled on your Win10 PC's (especially any Win10 1803). I would hold off on this for now tho, but here is the tutorial in case you need it - Enable or Disable SMB1 File Sharing Protocol in Windows | Windows 10 Tutorials

    I should mention, though, that I don't use homegroup on these computers. I use user accounts and passwords.
    That's a good thing as HomeGroup was removed in Win10 1803

    Check this tutorial for other to things to check and verify on your PC's - Share Files and Folders Over a Network in Windows 10 | Windows 10 Tutorials
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  6.    03 Aug 2018 #16

    Well, interestingly, Windows is now pestering me on the laptop B that it wants to upgrade to 1803. I am resisting because I don't want to deal with another new version. I hate the fact that they keep changing stuff--some which seems useless, less convenient and haphazard--and that there are all these versions to figure out, some of which may have problems specific to hardware. I just got a chance to check the problem desk machine A, and it is in fact Ver. 1803, Build 17134.

    I have no trouble finding Computer A by \\PCNAME from B, but I can already see it there in Network anyway. I'll have to wait now to get another shot later today at trying to see another machine from A by that means. But I can already see Laptop B from A.

    Based on that 2nd article I sent, I've already changed all the services mentioned (except Homegroup ones which are missing on computer A) to Automatic--not Automatic Delay. Do I need to change these two to Automatic Delay?

    I ran nbstat from Laptop B, to find the NAS, and I get this result. (Line feeds got messed up here):

    NetBIOS Remote Machine Name Table Name Type Status --------------------------------------------- NAS <00> UNIQUE Registered NAS <03> UNIQUE Registered NAS <20> UNIQUE Registered ☺☻__MSBROWSE__☻<01> GROUP Registered FAMILY <00> GROUP Registered FAMILY <1D> UNIQUE Registered FAMILY <1E> GROUP Registered MAC Address = 00-00-00-00-00-00

    I cannot see the NAS from Computer A, though i can from the other two computers. (Computer A cannot see itself either!)

    When I get access to A again (and laptop C), I'll check a couple more things.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    03 Aug 2018 #17

    Based on that 2nd article I sent, I've already changed all the services mentioned (except Homegroup ones which are missing on computer A) to Automatic--not Automatic Delay. Do I need to change these two to Automatic Delay?
    Either is fine, as long they run at startup:) ... I found on my PC's that Automatic Delay worked better, seemed if I set it to Automatic sometimes they didn't start. No clue as to why.

    I ran nbstat from Laptop B, to find the NAS, and I get this result. (Line feeds got messed up here):
    No problem, but now you know for sure your NAS is the Master Browser from this part ... ☻__MSBROWSE__☻

    As long as your can access your PC's (and NAS) shares from one another by \\PCNAME or \\IPADDRESS ... at least you know network sharing is actually working and it's just a matter of the different Win10 version quirks and them showing in File Explorer > Network.

    I got a feeling with your mixed versions, this may come down to using SMBv1 on all PC's. As a sanity check, on a PC that you can see all the other PC's and the NAS, I would check and see if that PC has SMBv1 installed/enabled.


    Edit:
    BTW ... You should be able to find out what SMB version your NAS is using by doing the following.
    1. Manually access one of your NAS share folders by \\NAS\SomeFolder or \\NASIPADDRESS\SomeFolder
    2. Open PowerShell as Admin > get-smbconnection and look at the Dialect column, that will be SMB vers.

    Update:
    Actually you can find out what SMB vers your PC's are using, with the above. There has be an active connection to a \\PCNAME\SomeFolder tho, otherwise the command will likely return nothing.
    Last edited by Eagle51; 03 Aug 2018 at 15:32.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  8.    03 Aug 2018 #18

    Sorry, I thought I should be able to do this without bothering you further, but I am not getting anywhere. In Powershell (Admin) I get\\NAS\DataBackup : "The term '\\NAS\DataBackup' is not recognized as the name of a cmdlet, function, script file, oroperable program." With get-smbconnection, Powershell apparently accepts the command, but it does not report anything. I can find the NAS folder in a browser, but it appears in Network anyway. (From Laptop B.)

    In the NAS there is a SMB item, but it does not say which version it is. I could probably find out on their web site. I could not find a clear explanation about where to find out which version my PC is using, but since this in Win10, I presume it uses at least v.1 & v.2.

    Oh,...and I discovered there is a setting where I can tell the NAS whether I want to allow it to try to become the local Master Browser.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    03 Aug 2018 #19

    In Powershell (Admin) I get\\NAS\DataBackup :
    My bad, you have to manually access it in File Explorer > Address Bar by \\NAS\DataBackup ... then run that command in poweshell.

    I could not find a clear explanation about where to find out which version my PC is using, but since this in Win10, I presume it uses at least v.1 & v.2.
    Win10 will try to use SMBv2 / SMBv3 by default, but if you have older NAS, TV's, Routers with USB File Sharing, etc. which require SMBv1 and it's not installed, then you can't see them on the network, also with SMBv1 you'll see the Computer Browser Service in windows services, since it's tied to SMBv1 ... See this tutorial to see if SMBv1 is installed/enabled - Enable or Disable SMB1 File Sharing Protocol in Windows | Windows 10 Tutorials

    Note: Even with some newer stuff, like my NetGear AC 1750 router with USB File Sharing, I know it uses SMBv3, but it doesn't show up in File Explorer > Network, unless I install/enable SMBv1 (no clue as to why, except I think it's a NetGear thing vs a Win10 thing) and since I don't have any devices that actually require SMBv1, I don't have it installed/enabled and I just map a network drive for my router share folder.

    Oh,...and I discovered there is a setting where I can tell the NAS whether I want it to allow it to try to become the local Master Browser.
    I would leave it as the Master Browser :)


    Edit:
    BTW .. If you find none of your PC's have SMBv1 installed and you don't need/want to use it (it is deprecated). You can always map a network drive for your shares on all your PC's - Map Network Drive in Windows 10 | Windows 10 Tutorials
    Last edited by Eagle51; 03 Aug 2018 at 16:00.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  10.    03 Aug 2018 #20

    Well, wouldn't it be nice if all the web sites with complicated detail about SMB v.1 simply said to check in "Turn Windows Features On and Off." Yes, Ver 1 is installed, at least on laptop B. Another thing to check on Desktop A when I get access in an hour or so.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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