[Samba] How does the "guest account" param work?

Kyle kl at attitia.com
Mon Oct 20 06:57:06 GMT 2008

Just to close this off.  Thanks to all for the assistance.

I do have DHCP handing out the samba WINS server. What I have found is;

1. Despite the claim being so, Windows cannot network neighbourhood 
browse without using port 139. At least my XP SP2 boxes (5) can't. So 
using 'smb ports = 445' doesn't work.

2. I have 'map to guest = Bad User' set and have been trying to browse 
the Workgroup "My Network Places -> Entire Network -> Microsoft Windows 
Network - > <workgroup_name>" on an XP host under my user name. But this 
particular machine has no passwd for my user.

As I am set up in Samba as a user and with a passwd, from those machines 
where my username has a passwd which matches the registered samba 
passwd, I have no problems. However on the machine where I have no 
passwd set, unlike the other XP boxes, I am unable to browse the 
Workgroup at all. If I know the share I can connect as a guest, but I 
can't "browse" the Workgroup the way it is possible to do with Windows 

In fact, it appears that with Samba unless you are a recognised user, 
you cannot browse the workgroup at all. You can log on to a share, IF 
you know the name of that share, but it appears Samba does not allow you 
to browse a workgroup for which it is the master.

Kind Regards


Michael Heydon wrote:
> Theoretically this should all just happen automatically, in the real 
> world the broadcast method of finding hosts and workgroups is pretty 
> flakey. MS worked around this by creating WINS, which is sort of like 
> DNS for SMB. All MS servers since way back when have handed out WINS 
> settings via DHCP out of the box. Under *nix, you need to tell your 
> DHCP server to hand out a WINS server (or specify it on each machine 
> manually).
> On an unrelated note, your smb.conf is overly complex, you are 
> specifying a lot of settings where the defaults are most likely 
> entirely suitable. You might find it easier in the long term to start 
> over again with the standard config that ships with samba and only add 
> settings that you actually need. (e.g. messing with buffer settings 
> has been depreciated for quite some years).

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