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DNS or /etc/hosts problem?

  1. Jul 11, 2010 #1


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    Hi guys, I am having a home-networking issue. It's something that's been around for a while and I'm really just now needed to get it fixed. Here's the lowdown:

    I have three machines, desktop A with Windows XP, a Windows Vista laptop, and a desktop B which dual-boots Windows XP and Ubuntu 10.04. Both desktops have shared folders.

    When desktop B is booted into Windows, everything seems to work OK.

    However, when desktop B is booted into Linux, things are fishy. I am using Samba for the sharing. Desktop A cannot see nor access desktop B shares in any way. From desktop B I cannot "see" desktop A via Network Location, nor can I get the share via the computer name. However, I can access the share by IP address. i.e.:
    //desktopA/Media - doesn't work - works

    This initially made me think there was some sort of problem with my hosts file. However, upon looking at it, it seems to be correct. Both desktop machines are using the same DNS servers and nameservers.

    What is even more weird is that my laptop can see the linux box. If I open up Network Places, I can see both the windows and linux shares (I can't access the Samba shares, I still have some permissions debugging to do).

    So, after realizing this, I figured that the DNS is probably OK. After all, my laptop is properly seeing the shares. So...simply put, I'm a little confused. If anyone has anything I might be able to try, I'd appreciate it. I suppose I could set a static IP on the linux box and just share the IP, but I'd rather fix the problem than just bandaging it.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 11, 2010 #2


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    Check the DNS client service is running on the windows machine.
    Without it you can't find a server by MS network name.

    However MS uses a rather 'interesting' system for creating the equivalent of a name server on the network. It ranks OSes by professionalness and if they are all the same they vote and pick one at random.
  4. Jul 13, 2010 #3


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    The service is running. As I mentioned, while Desktop B can fully use Desktop A's shares while booted into Windows. From the laptop I can see Desktop A in the network as the computer name. It appears as if DNS is working properly on that machine.

    Something else slightly weird is that from the laptop (WinVista) I can see the Samba shares, while the Windows XP box cannot. I mean, when Desktop B is in Windows, everything works fine, but in Ubuntu, things are screwy. Based on this, I should be able to conclude that it's the Linux distro causing the issues, but everything appears to be fine.

    I'm just at a loss.
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