We have a three site wan and are struggling to get WINS working in one of the sites. We've tried lots of trouble shooting and think it may be a result of miss configured master browsers.

However I'm struggling to understand which machine should be set up as Master Browsers.

Every site has a domain controller that also acts as a DNS and WINS server. Sites A and B seem to be operating correctly and when users open Network browser they can see all the machines in their own site and the other site - however Site C can only see computers in their own site and they do not appear with network browser of the other sites. We've checked replication and it appears to be working.

Am I right in thinking that each of the domain controllers should also be master browsers and no other servers should be.

Sorry if the above is a bit garbled - I'm struggling with this and failing to find any sensible documentation.

  • I didn't even know WINS was made to work across subnets? Are you sure this isn't a case where site C has DNS/AD trouble and falls back on WINS, whereas site A & B are correctly replicating each other's AD/DNS listings? – DutchUncle Feb 23 '11 at 17:19
  • @UnisoftDesign : WINS works just fine across subnets. – Jean-Marc Liotier Jan 4 '12 at 16:44

Yes, Domain Controllers should be Master Browsers - setting your domain controllers as "Preferred Master" should fix most of the Master Browser election problem.

One of the common reasons for operating a WINS server is to provide a central reference for NetBIOS names across several subnets. Choosing one primary WINS server and pointing all clients to it lets NetBIOS name resolution work across subnets without requiring the use of Domain Controllers.

But if your system is supposed to rely on domain controllers, loss of replication for site C may explain your symptoms. So start with verifying successful replication.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.