File sharing - Windows & Leopard - router?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by edmartin, Jul 26, 2008.

  1. edmartin macrumors member

    Jul 23, 2007
    Like many, I am having problems on my home LAN getting Windows PCs to show up automatically in Finder/Shared. I've scoured these boards & many others looking for the solution but I'm still frustrated.

    My current thinking is that this must somehow be related to my router. Maybe, maybe not. But here's what I do know...

    Home LAN config:
    3 Windows Vista PCs
    1 Windows XP Pro PC
    1 MacBook Pro
    DSL modem (Speedstream 4200) in pass-through mode to...
    D-Link router (DVG-5102S). It's a Telephone Adapter for AT&T Callvantage VoIP (but it's a router). The D-Link Router connects into...
    Netgear 8-port switch (not a router). This feeds 2 of the 4 PCs (wired). It also feeds...
    Airport Express. In bridge mode. This feeds the MBP and 2 of the other PCs
    File sharing configured on all PCs & Mac
    Firewalls off on PCs and Mac ("accept all incoming connections" on the MBP and Windows firewall turned off on the PCs)
    No other software firewalls on any of the computers
    Router & AE are on the same subnet

    Home LAN scenario:
    All 4 of the PCs can see each other and can see the MBP when I click on "Network" in Windows. No problems
    All 4 PCs can exchange files amongst themselves as well as with the Mac all according to the specific folder access rules on the PCs and Mac. No problems.
    I can connect the MBP to any of the PCs by doing Finder/cmd-K and entering smb//<pcname>. I do not have to use the IP (although that works; too)
    For what it's worth, I have iTunes on all machines (PCs & Mac) with iTunes sharing turned on. All of the machines show up to each other in iTunes automatically and can share with no issues

    What's not working:
    None of the PCs show up automatically under Finder/Shared. Obviously, if I do cmd-K smb//<pc name> it appears there with the "eject" button next to it but as soon as I reboot, it disappears again.
    I also use the MBP at work. The scenario there is brighter:
    Shared PCs on the office LAN all automatically appear in Finder/Shared
    Server drives automatically appear in Finder/Shared
    All machines can read/write/share according to sharing rules set up on each machine. In other words, the office LAN works as it should
    I've been puling my hair out trying to figure out the missing link (pun intended) to get things to work fully at home. Granted, I am in better shape than many with the "no Windows shared computers" on these boards - I can at least access the Windows machines 100% of the time using cmd-K smb/<pc name>. But I shouldn't have to; something's not right.
    I'm not a LAN expert by any stretch. But given what I knew before & what I've learned in the last few days trying to resolve this, it seems like whatever the PCs are broadcasting across the LAN to say "hey, I'm here and I have shared folders" is being blocked before it can get to the MacBook Pro. That broadcast is clearly getting to the other PCs because they all show up under Windows. And the broadcast from the MBP is working, too because it shows up to all of the PCs.

    I guess it could be the MBP "blocking" or ignoring it but I don't think so. When I take the MBP into the office, all of the PCs and servers automatically show up in Finder/Shared.

    So my "smoking gun" is the D-Link router. I guess it could be something in the DSL or AE but both are in bridge mode so I doubt it.

  2. patrickmacrumor macrumors regular

    Jun 24, 2008
  3. Apple Ink macrumors 68000

    Apple Ink

    Mar 7, 2008
    You must enable file sharing in your PCs!

    In Vista, head of to Network and Sharing Center and in the 2nd list below the miniature network chart... enable all file sharing options. Also make sure that the firewalls of your antivirus software are all OFF!

    Restart your mac and check it out!
    If this doesnt work out, you'll need to change the the network location from whatever it is to 'Home'

    Hope this helps!:)
  4. ewilson6 macrumors 6502

    Nov 30, 2006
    use microsoft remote desktop found at

    This free download runs natively on both Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macs. The RDC bundle supports eight languages: English, French, German, Italian, Swedish, Spanish, Dutch, and Japanese.

    Easily connect to remote Windows PCs.
    With Remote Desktop Connection Client 2, you can quickly, simply and securely connect to Windows-based PCs to access Windows-based files, applications, devices, and networks from your Mac.

    Easy Solution!!
  5. patrickmacrumor macrumors regular

    Jun 24, 2008
    But when you use Microsoft Remote Desktop, you lock the computer to which you connect. If you want to just exchange files between a Windows computer and a Mac, without interrupting someone working on the Windows computer, Microsoft Remote Desktop is not a good solution.

  6. misterredman macrumors 6502a


    Oct 3, 2007
    Since you are able to connect using the cmd-k shortcut what I would check is if you set the correct Workgroup (the same of the windows machines) under the network settings of the adapter you are using. I am thinking about this because your setup is fine on another network. Beware there was a problem in leopard and you may have to set a new location to make leopard save the settings as explained here:

    Let me know if it helps you.

    A good strategy would be to simplify your network and add up more computers when you see things are working as you wish. Start with the router, a PC and the mac, without switch inbetween.
  7. durija macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2008
    Sounds like you can connect to each machine through smb, but they're just not showing at startup. This won't fix that, but you could just drag each to your dock to create an alias. At least they'll be easy to get to that way.

Share This Page