Accessing shared Mac Folders from Windows

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by gwrichard, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. gwrichard macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2012
    I have a MB running OS X Lion and several Windows Vista and Windows 7 computers in my house. I have enabled file sharing on the MB and on the Windows machines. All machines are set to the same workgroup. Accessing the Windows volumes from the MB works fine.

    I can see my MB through the Network places on all the windows machines. However, when I click on the MB, the windows machines are unable to connect. It gives me the option to 'diagnose' the problem. When I click that, it tells me to open TCP port 445 on the MB.

    I can access the MB shared volumes if I manually connect by opening 'run' and typing the IP address of the MB (i.e. \\

    Anyone have a solution for accessing the MB through Network Places rather than manually typing in the address? It's a matter of convenience, but the other users on my network aren't adept at technology and this would confuse them too much.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. jasonvp macrumors 6502a


    Jun 29, 2007
    Northern VA
    I haven't set up a SAMBA share on OS X in the past, so I might not be 100% here. But based on what you've written, it sounds like you need an internal DNS server running to provide name resolution for your laptop to its IP address. Apparently the Mac is announcing itself as available for a share via the right protocol, but when the Windows boxes try to resolve that name, they're failing.

    One hack solution you can do for all of the Windows boxes on the network is to add your laptop into their lmhosts file statically. I don't care for static configs like this, but it's either that or trying to set up an internal DNS server (which I already do, but it takes another server).

    The format of the lmhosts file is simple:
    IP_address hostname
    IP_address hostname
    So for yours, on each of the Windows machines, you'd do this:
    Code: laptop_name
    This assumes, of course, that your laptop's IP never changes. If it does.. well.. you've got a lot of editing to do again. I'd recommend setting that IP up as reserved in your DHCP server/wireless router so that it always gets that IP when it attaches to the network.

    Of important note: MS made it a bit trickier to edit the lmhosts file on Vista and Win7 in their attempt to 'secure' the OS (har har). You'll need to follow an extra step or two as outlined here.


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