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I have just setup a new OSX Server in our office and verified that everything is working fine over our wired network (192.168.126.0/24).

The problem that I am having is that our clients (Mac Laptops) are mainly connected via Wireless, which are running on a different subnet (192.168.1.0/24), and the mDNS Broadcast isn't reaching this subnet.

The network configuration is somewhat foreign to myself (I don't manage the network in this location, but as of just recently the servers), however I don't believe there is any firewalls or routing rules between the two subnets which might cause the traffic to be rejected.

I'm wondering if this is simply the mDNS broadcast not able to broadcast over the two different subnets (I'm still reading up on broadcast to understand it more) or there is something else which I might be able to try.

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2 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Although you can do “wide-area Bonjour” (that is, Bonjour over an ordinary DNS domain with dynamic registration enabled, rather than Bonjour over multicast DNS), most built-in Mac OS X stuff isn’t designed for using it — principally because wide-area Bonjour is designed for advertising services over something more diverse than just a couple of subnets.

Theoretically, though, you could configure a router to pass packets bound for the multicast group 224.0.0.251 between your two subnets, which should do the right thing — assuming you don’t have NAT involved. Whether and how you can do this depends on the type of router you have sitting between the wireless and wired networks.

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Generally if you are using OS X server you will be better off using normal DNS for name resolution rather than mDNS. Bonjour is really only suitable for service auto-discovery, if you have a server you will probably want to advertise or configure your services.

That said Wide Area Bonjour (or more properly DNS-SD) does exist in various shapes and forms (see here or here for rather dated examples).

A better fix for you may be to put an interface of your server on the wireless subnet to avoid all of this messeyness, without knowing more about your network setup it is hard to offer specific advice.

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