Windows 95 Can Share the Windows NT Domain Browse List

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Article ID: 148527 - View products that this article applies to.
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The Windows 95 browser service has the capability to act as a subnet master browser for a domain, in a routed TCP/IP network. This effectively means that a Windows 95 computer can behave like a Windows NT computer in that it will share the local subnet browse list with the Windows NT Domain Master Browser (DMB). Note the Windows NT DMB is also the Primary Domain Controller (PDC).


The behavior of the Windows 95 browser service is almost exactly the same as in Windows NT 3.5, 3.51, and Windows for Workgroups 3.11 (using TCP/IP- 32b and the updated redirector files from NT Server 3.51 compact disc).

When a Windows 95 computer is elected to become master browser on the network segment, it will contact the Domain Master Browser every 12 to 15 minutes to share browse lists.

During this transaction, Windows 95 will request the domain browse list from the DMB, which includes the list of computers in the local domain as well as the list of other domains. The DMB will then request the "local segment browse list" that the Windows 95 computer has compiled, and then merge it with the domain list.

Thus, the Windows 95 machine will have a compiled domain browse list (local list & DMB list), and the DMB will always have a complete domain-wide browse list of all remote segments that have "domain members"

NOTE: in this context, a "domain member" is an Windows NT machine that has joined the domain, or any Microsoft network client which is part of a workgroup (name) that is identical to the domain (name).

The requirements for this functionality are:
  • The Windows 95 workgroup name must be the same as the domain name. This then qualifies the Windows 95 machine as a "domain member" for the purposes of this topic.
  • One of the following:

    • All clients and servers must be Windows Internet Naming Service (WINS) enabled, and be able to resolve their DOMAIN<1B> name thru WINS. (The DOMAIN<1B> name can only be registered by the Primary Domain Controller.) -or-

    • If the network does not utilize WINS, you may still have limited domain browsing functionality by specifying special names in the LMHOSTS file.
For additional information, please see the following article(s) in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
150800(still to be written) Domain Browsing with TCP/IP and LMHOSTS Files.


Article ID: 148527 - Last Review: February 28, 2014 - Revision: 3.0
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows 95
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