NT4 Network Neighborhood

by Johannes Helmig [Published on 19 Dec. 1999 / Last Updated on 19 Dec. 1999]

The "Network Neighborhood" on an NT-system works
very similar as on a Windows95 system, except that
is handled the higher security of NT (usernames).

It is based on the Browse-Master concept
(because for Microsoft, NT is superior to Windows95/98,
so on a network with both NT and Windows9x systems,
the NT-systems will always "win" the
Browse-master election)

If a system is NOT displayed , you need to do some troubleshooting,
but it could also be that an NT-system has been hidden (to NOT be displayed
in the Network Neighborhood)

The dialog for mapping a network drive has is similar to Windows95,
but allows in addition to define a different username.

If the Share is not protected by a password or if your Username (and password)
matches the permissions for the share, you have access, otherwise you will
be prompted for a valid username and password:

If you are connecting to a Windows95/98 share, which is protected with
an access-password:

then define in the NT-mapping dialogbox as username "guest"
(it really does not matter, any name should work) and as password
the proper access-password

This message indicated, that the requested system is not accessible, in most
case it simply means: it has been switched off !

Once a network drive is mapped with the option to "Reconnect at logon", it could
cause an error message to be displayed on restart/relogon if the system sharing is not

If a share is not accessible with the error message: "The device is not ready",
then it could be a removable drive ( like a Floppy disk, CD-ROM , ZIP-drive,
Jazz-drive or any other removable media ) , where the media is missing
(it could also be a Ghost-share)

That is now on the negative points of the Microsoft Network Neighborhood:
It can take up to 12 minutes, before a new system is displayed after switching
it on, and it can take even 3 times longer, before a switch-off system disappears
from the Network-Neighborhood.

A solution: a modification in the NT-registry using the key:
under "Parameters", create a new key "Announce" as DWORD-value:

The value is in seconds, and to avoid a high network-load due to too many
broadcast-announcing messages, 60 seconds seems to be a good choice
(original source of the information on this registry-key: PC Professional 10/98)

See Also

The Author — Johannes Helmig

Dr.Johannes Helmig is working as Director, Technical Knowledge Management in the Belgium office of Gerber Technology where he is involved in Customer Service and internal training, with special interest in Networking.


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