[Samba] VPN and NetBIOS Name Service

Adam Tauno Williams adamtaunowilliams at gmail.com
Mon Jun 11 02:16:40 GMT 2007

On Sat, 2007-06-09 at 23:46 +0000, shaunp wrote:
> Hello, I'm running a Samba client on Mac OS X 10.3.9 and Samba works fine when
> the Mac is at home (e.g. file transfers, name resolution, etc.).  However, name
> resolution does not work when the Mac is at a remote location and logged into my
> home network via a PPTP VPN.  File transfers work fine over the VPN connection
> when I use IP addresses instead of NetBIOS names.
> While trying to debug the problem I ran WireShark to sniff packets on the Mac
> and found that Samba does not broadcast the NetBIOS Name Query across my ppp0
> interface.  Since ppp0 is dynamically created on the Mac when it connects to the
> VPN it doesn't appear that I can set ppp0 as an interface in smb.conf to solve
> the problem.  Is this correct and, if so, what do I need to do to tell Samba to
> broadcast NetBIOS Name Service traffic over dynamically created interfaces?

How do you configure the PPP link?  We've had much better luck / less
trouble on PPP links that are proxy arp'd to the 'host' network than
ones configured in the traditional routed manner.

If your host networks PPP creates the appropriate routes you can set
remote announce of that Samba server to push the announcements to the
client network.  If the VPN is down then the route won't exist and the
packets are discarded.  Creates a little noise but has worked for us in
the past.

Adam Tauno Williams, Network & Systems Administrator
Consultant - http://www.whitemiceconsulting.com
Developer - http://www.opengroupware.org

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