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Samba HowTo Guide
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Making Samba the Domain Master

The domain master browser is responsible for collating the browse lists of multiple subnets so browsing can occur between subnets. You can make Samba act as the domain master browser by setting domain master = yes in smb.conf. By default it will not be a domain master browser.

Do not set Samba to be the domain master for a workgroup that has the same name as an NT/200x domain. If Samba is configured to be the domain master for a workgroup that is present on the same network as a Windows NT/200x domain that has the same name, network browsing problems will certainly be experienced.

When Samba is the domain master and the master browser, it will listen for master announcements (made roughly every 12 minutes) from LMBs on other subnets and then contact them to synchronize browse lists.

If you want Samba to be the domain master, you should also set the os level high enough to make sure it wins elections, and set preferred master to yes, to get Samba to force an election on startup.

All servers (including Samba) and clients should be using a WINS server to resolve NetBIOS names. If your clients are only using broadcasting to resolve NetBIOS names, then two things will occur:

  1. LMBs will be unable to find a DMB because they will be looking only on the local subnet.

  2. If a client happens to get hold of a domain-wide browse list and a user attempts to access a host in that list, it will be unable to resolve the NetBIOS name of that host.

If, however, both Samba and your clients are using a WINS server, then:

  1. LMBs will contact the WINS server and, as long as Samba has registered that it is a DMB with the WINS server, the LMB will receive Samba's IP address as its DMB.

  2. When a client receives a domain-wide browse list and a user attempts to access a host in that list, it will contact the WINS server to resolve the NetBIOS name of that host. As long as that host has registered its NetBIOS name with the same WINS server, the user will be able to see that host..

Samba HowTo Guide
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