UNIX DNS talking to WINS using samba

Samba-Central samba at aquasoft.com.au
Sun Aug 30 01:24:10 GMT 1998


The DNS Server Microsoft bundles with MS Windows NT Server CAN be
configured to perform a hostname query on a Microsoft WINS server. By
default this functionality is DISABLED, so you have to specifically
configure MS DNS to do this. This wonderful technology has a number of
gotcha's to it!

MS DHCP server does NOT dynamically register an allocated IP Address with
the MS DNS server. Every SMB networking client and server MUST register
it's SMB names on start up. When using TCP/IP, every SMB name and it's
matching IP address gets registered. In the absence of a properly
configured WINS environment all such registrations are done by way of
general broadcast using UDP. With WINS the names get entered into the WINS

So far as I am aware, MS DNS talks to MS WINS using proprietary protocol
extensions. It would be possible to extend the BIND sources so that in the
event that a DNS name lookup fails the DNS server will perform an SMB name
lookup on a WINS server. This could be done using normal SMB protocols.
This is not a current priority for the Samba-Team and would necessitate
maintaining code changes to software we do not control. We do not at this
time have the people and time resources to do that. Our efforts are
currently being directed towards MS Windows NT Domain Control technology
extensions to Samba.

If you really believe this is a desirable functionality then might I
suggest that you discuss this with the maintainers of the BIND sources.

Please see below for further comments.

John H Terpstra

On Sun, 30 Aug 1998, Pradeep Subramaniam wrote:

> I currently have samba, version 1.9.17p2 running in our predominantly
> Solaris environment, serving files to the W95 and NT boxes.
> I recently heard that it is possible to have the UNIX DNS server talk
> to the WINS server on an NT box, hence enabling the UNIX workstations
> to refer to a PC or laptop, joining the network using DHCP, by a name
> rather than the IP address.

A common work-around to this in the Unix world is to make sure that all
your DHCP IP address pool numbers have a DNS entry. This has the
"drawback" that a PC client will have an FQDN that differs from it's
NetBIOS machine name. That is really not such a bad idea though.

In many sites PC users will change the NetBIOS machine name. Often they
will include characters that are illegal in DNS environment. For example:
How do you think DNS will handle a name like this: "DRUNK.PARTY" in a DNS
domain called "funtime.com". This will be rendered to an FQDN of:
implying that the hostname "drunk" is a member of the authoritative DNS
zone "party.funtime.com". The problem is that "DRUNK.PARTY" is a perfectly
legal SMB computer name.

In other words, having DNS do WINS lookups can be VERY tricky and can
cuase LOTS of headaches. Do we really want to inflict this on ourselves?

> Could someone out there please tell me if I can do this with the
> version of samba I have right now, or should I upgrade to a later
> version?

I hope this has been answered above.

> Also, where can I go for detailed documentation on how to set this up?

Other than the MS Windows NT Server implementation, Samba does not provide

> Pradeep.
> -- 
> Pradeep Subramaniam, Snr. Sys. Admin.   | You can fool some of the people
> Algorithmics Inc., Toronto, On., Canada.|   all the time, but not all the
> e-mail: pradeep at algorithmics.com        |   people all the time.
> phone: (416) 217 4203                   | - Yet another brilliant philosopher
> fax:   (416) 971 6263                   |
> *******************************************************************************

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