[Samba] BINGO - bug - 3.0.14, 3.0.21 intractable browsing problems

Stephen Bosch posting at vodacomm.ca
Tue Jan 31 03:08:52 GMT 2006

Okay, folks -- we've found the cause of the problem.

To recap: With our Samba server as the master browser, the domain window
in My Network Places is totally empty, irrespective of what client we
use (Windows 98, 2000, XP).

When Samba is not the master browser (i.e., another workstation is
acting as the master browser), hosts are visible.

When Samba is the master browser, the browse.dat and wins.dat files are
populated correctly with the hosts on the network.

Our browse.dat and wins.dat files are stored in /var/cache/samba.

The directory had permissions of 744. With the permission set as 744, no
worky. With the permissions set at 755, tada -- suddenly it works. A
whole host of problems are resolved. A permissions problem (what we
initially suspected) but not one that was simple to devine. The browse
connections are made by an unprivileged user, and with permissions of
744, that user cannot enter the directory, even if the files are readable.

This is the sort of problem that a perusal of the nmbd log should have
made immediately obvious. If Samba can't read a vital file, shouldn't it
be reporting that in the logs? We've reproduced the problem with the log
level set at 9; though nmbd reports that the browse.dat file is being
written to, it never says anything about being unable to read it or
unable to enter the cache directory. If it had, we would have taken
three minutes to fix this problem instead of three weeks.

We didn't see an error to this effect in the session logs, either.

Perhaps there's something misconfigured with our logging -- but it seems
just as likely that Samba isn't reporting a failure to read the
browse.dat and wins.dat files to the logs.


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