When you name your Windows computers and Im talking from Windows 2000 to Win7 do you stay within the Netbios name limit for workstations of 15 charactors? I interested if this limit is still relevant in a corporate network wether users login to a domain or the local workstation.

2 Answers 2


Microsoft still recommends 15 characters or less.

If you give a recent computer a name longer than 15 characters, anything more recent than Windows ME/NT 4.0 will be able to talk to it using the full name. Older than that and you need to truncate to 15 characters. When you are setting a computer name, if you go into the "more" button it will actually show you the NetBIOS computer name if it differs from the standard name.

Here is a KB article on the different limitations for computer naming:

Also, here is the Windows 2008 R2 computer naming recommendation:
as you can see, still 15 characters.

  • Re your opening line... Do you mean Microsoft still recommends less than 16 characters.
    – Canacourse
    Commented Mar 17, 2010 at 14:04

I wish I could think of a recent example but I've seen a number of issues with names longer than 15 characters in the last couple years. You should stick with 15 characters. Microsoft still recommends 15 even though they support more. There's just no point in rolling something out and finding out after the fact that you have a glitch somewhere because some app doesn't handle big names.

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