Samba NOT using WINS? (was: network is busy / login failures)

David L. Jarvis David at
Fri Jan 12 14:24:15 GMT 2001

Ok folks, the saga continues, but this is an issue
that I think should concern all Samba users/sysadmins.

It appears to me that Samba is NOT communicating with
the WINS server (at least not consistently) for
authentication of login requests when a pc tries to
get logged in and map a drive letter to a share.

In smb.conf I have the following relevant entries:
name resolve order = wins host bcast
wins server =

The WINS server is an NT4(SP6a) box which also runs
DHCP for the workstations.  This appears to work ok
as I can inspect the entries in the WINS manager.

Now, yesterday I tried adding entries in /etc/hosts
for all the dhcp client workstations, but I was still
wondering why I needed to do that if I had WINS as the
first in the resolve order.  Now, it's hard to tell if
it worked or not without waiting a day because sometimes
we can go half a day or more without having a single

But then I found out that I had the wrong classless
notation on the interfaces entry in smb.conf - I had
/24 (class c
instead of /16 (class b

At this point doing an nmblookup -M -
said it couldn't contact the master browser
and nmblookup ABC gave a failure message and
couldn't find the workstation called ABC.

After fixing the interfaces line above, I restarted smb
and REMOVED the entries from /etc/hosts.
I wanted to prove Samba would use the WINS server.

At this point, I can do an nmblookup -M - and it
returns immediately with a success:
   querying __MSBROWSE__ on
   Got a positive name query response from ( ) __MSBROWSE__<01>

I can do an nmblookup ABC and it immediately finds
the workstation called ABC.  However, I don't think
it's using WINS to find it.
   querying W250 on
   Got a positive name query response from ( ) W250<00>

Well, that's a broadcast, and it damn well shouldn't be
broadcasting if I've given it a WINS server and made
wins the first in the resolve order - and it's proven
that it is able to contact the WINS server as the
master browser.

Ok Samba gurus, here are the relevant questions then:

Q1: Am I correct that Samba is NOT using WINS when it should?

Q2: Why does Samba do the reverse query in the first place
when it obviously doesn't care about the result?
(See my previous post about putting dummy entries in /etc/hosts,
Samba doesn't care if the name it finds matches anything or even
if it gets a real hostname in return - ie; I had mine blank!)

PS: Here are the specifics: Samba  2.0.7-4 on RH6.2
Win98SE as workstations with ONLY TCP/IP loaded.
Fully switched 100baseT network (that a network analyst
has certified as healthy and not clogged in any way)
Approx 50 nodes and 10 servers (all on switches).
NT4 w/ service pack 6a as the DHCP & WINS server.

Below is my smb.conf file (did I miss anything?)

David L. Jarvis
David at

# This is the main Samba configuration file. You should read the
# smb.conf(5) manual page in order to understand the options listed
# here. Samba has a huge number of configurable options (perhaps too
# many!) most of which are not shown in this example
# Any line which starts with a ; (semi-colon) or a # (hash)
# is a comment and is ignored. In this example we will use a #
# for commentry and a ; for parts of the config file that you
# may wish to enable
# NOTE: Whenever you modify this file you should run the command "testparm"
# to check that you have not many any basic syntactic errors.
#======================= Global Settings

# workgroup = NT-Domain-Name or Workgroup-Name
   workgroup = XXXXX

# server string is the equivalent of the NT Description field
   server string = Linux_Server

# This option is important for security. It allows you to restrict
# connections to machines which are on your local network. The
# following example restricts access to two C class networks and
# the "loopback" interface. For more examples of the syntax see
# the smb.conf man page
;   hosts allow = 192.168.1. 192.168.2. 127.
   hosts allow = 172.22.1. 172.21.1.

# if you want to automatically load your printer list rather
# than setting them up individually then you'll need this
;   printcap name = /etc/printcap
;   load printers = yes

# It should not be necessary to spell out the print system type unless
# yours is non-standard. Currently supported print systems include:
# bsd, sysv, plp, lprng, aix, hpux, qnx
;   printing = bsd

# Uncomment this if you want a guest account, you must add this to
# otherwise the user "nobody" is used
;  guest account = pcguest

# this tells Samba to use a separate log file for each machine
# that connects
   log file = /var/log/samba/log.%m

# Put a capping on the size of the log files (in Kb).
   max log size = 500

# Security mode. Most people will want user level security. See
# security_level.txt for details.
   security = user
# Use password server option only with security = server
;   password server = <NT-Server-Name>

# Password Level allows matching of _n_ characters of the password for
# all combinations of upper and lower case.
;  password level = 8
;  username level = 8

# You may wish to use password encryption. Please read
# ENCRYPTION.txt, Win95.txt and WinNT.txt in the Samba documentation.
# Do not enable this option unless you have read those documents
;  encrypt passwords = yes
;  smb passwd file = /etc/smbpasswd

# The following are needed to allow password changing from Windows to
# update the Linux sytsem password also.
# NOTE: Use these with 'encrypt passwords' and 'smb passwd file' above.
# NOTE2: You do NOT need these to allow workstations to change only
#        the encrypted SMB passwords. They allow the Unix password
#        to be kept in sync with the SMB password.
;  unix password sync = Yes
;  passwd program = /usr/bin/passwd %u
;  passwd chat = *New*UNIX*password* %n\n *ReType*new*UNIX*password* %n\n

# Unix users can map to different SMB User names
username map = /etc/smbusers

# Using the following line enables you to customise your configuration
# on a per machine basis. The %m gets replaced with the netbios name
# of the machine that is connecting
;   include = /etc/smb.conf.%m

# Most people will find that this option gives better performance.
# See speed.txt and the manual pages for details
   socket options = TCP_NODELAY SO_RCVBUF=8192 SO_SNDBUF=8192

# Configure Samba to use multiple interfaces
# If you have multiple network interfaces then you must list them
# here. See the man page for details.
;   interfaces =
   interfaces =

# Configure remote browse list synchronisation here
#  request announcement to, or browse list sync from:
#	a specific host or from / to a whole subnet (see below)
;   remote browse sync =
# Cause this host to announce itself to local subnets here
;   remote announce =

# Browser Control Options:
# set local master to no if you don't want Samba to become a master
# browser on your network. Otherwise the normal election rules apply
   local master = no

# OS Level determines the precedence of this server in master browser
# elections. The default value should be reasonable
;   os level = 33

# Domain Master specifies Samba to be the Domain Master Browser. This
# allows Samba to collate browse lists between subnets. Don't use this
# if you already have a Windows NT domain controller doing this job
;   domain master = yes

# Preferred Master causes Samba to force a local browser election on startup
# and gives it a slightly higher chance of winning the election
;   preferred master = yes

# Use only if you have an NT server on your network that has been
# configured at install time to be a primary domain controller.
;   domain controller = <NT-Domain-Controller-SMBName>

# Enable this if you want Samba to be a domain logon server for
# Windows95 workstations.
;   domain logons = yes

# if you enable domain logons then you may want a per-machine or
# per user logon script
# run a specific logon batch file per workstation (machine)
;   logon script = %m.bat
# run a specific logon batch file per username
;   logon script = %U.bat

# Where to store roving profiles (only for Win95 and WinNT)
#        %L substitutes for this servers netbios name, %U is username
#        You must uncomment the [Profiles] share below
;   logon path = \\%L\Profiles\%U

# All NetBIOS names must be resolved to IP Addresses
# 'Name Resolve Order' allows the named resolution mechanism to be specified
# the default order is "host lmhosts wins bcast". "host" means use the unix
# system gethostbyname() function call that will use either /etc/hosts OR
# DNS or NIS depending on the settings of /etc/host.config,
# and the /etc/resolv.conf file. "host" therefore is system configuration
# dependant. This parameter is most often of use to prevent DNS lookups
# in order to resolve NetBIOS names to IP Addresses. Use with care!
# The example below excludes use of name resolution for machines that are
# on the local network segment
# - OR - are not deliberately to be known via lmhosts or via WINS.
;   name resolve order = wins host lmhosts bcast
name resolve order = wins host bcast

# Windows Internet Name Serving Support Section:
# WINS Support - Tells the NMBD component of Samba to enable it's WINS
;   wins support = yes

# WINS Server - Tells the NMBD components of Samba to be a WINS Client
#	Note: Samba can be either a WINS Server, or a WINS Client, but NOT both
wins server =

# WINS Proxy - Tells Samba to answer name resolution queries on
# behalf of a non WINS capable client, for this to work there must be
# at least one	WINS Server on the network. The default is NO.
   wins proxy = no

# DNS Proxy - tells Samba whether or not to try to resolve NetBIOS names
# via DNS nslookups. The built-in default for versions 1.9.17 is yes,
# this has been changed in version 1.9.18 to no.
   dns proxy = no

# Case Preservation can be handy - system default is _no_
# NOTE: These can be set on a per share basis
;  preserve case = no
;  short preserve case = no
# Default case is normally upper case for all DOS files
;  default case = lower
# Be very careful with case sensitivity - it can break things!
;  case sensitive = no

#============================ Share Definitions
[...shares removed...]


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