TTL value

Thomas Schulz schulz at
Fri Apr 24 11:46:20 MDT 2015

> On Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 11:33:09PM -0400, rac8006 at wrote:
> > I'm investigating why the browse.dat file on my system is  written every
> > few minutes.  I've traced part of it to update_server_ttl being called frequently.
> > 
> > update_server_ttl is being called by process_local_master_announce.  Is there 
> > some reason that my DNS-323 which is the master is sending this request.
> > The ip_default_ttl value on the DNS-323 is 64.  Is this a normal value?
> nmbd has a comment:
>                 /*
>                  * Write out a snapshot of our current browse list into
>                  * the browse.dat file. This is used by smbd to service
>                  * incoming NetServerEnum calls - used to synchronise
>                  * browse lists over subnets.
>                  */
> This pretty much describes the purpose of browse.dat. If you
> are never a local master browser, you can probably just
> comment out all calls to write_browse_lists as a very quick
> workaround.
> Volker

Here is my understanding of what is going on.

If you have multiple servers, any combination of Samba servers or
native Windows servers, the various servers frequently talk to each
other to find out what servers exist and to hold elections to determine
which server will be the master browser. If you have just one server
then it still frequently tries to see if any other servers have come
on line. This is done quite frequently as you want to quickly know
if an old server goes off line or a new one comes on line.

It looks like browse.dat is re-written even if nothing has changed.
I just looked at some of our browse.dat files and they are updated
very often. So I think that the behavior you are seeing is to be

As I mentioned in a previous post, you should be able to move the location
of the browse.dat file with a symbolic link. Is this frequent writing
causing some problem for you or are you just curious?

Tom Schulz
Applied Dynamics Intl.
schulz at

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