NetBIOS Name Resolution Using DNS and the HOSTS File

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Article ID: 142309 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q142309
Windows allows you to resolve NetBIOS names using the HOSTS file or Domain Name System (DNS) server. To do this, you must select the Enable DNS for Windows Name Resolution check box in the Advanced Microsoft TCP/IP Configuration dialog box of Control Panel Network.

In addition, Windows uses Windows Internet Name Service (WINS), b-node broadcasts and the LMHOSTS file for NetBIOS name resolution. If all of these name resolution methods are used, an h-node host computer implements them in the following order:
  1. NetBIOS name cache
  2. WINS server
  3. B-node broadcast
  4. LMHOSTS file
  5. HOSTS file
  6. DNS server
NOTE: This setting and the name-resolution order above apply only to NetBIOS name resolution. Any Winsock name resolution queries the HOSTS file and assigns DNS servers first.
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Article ID: 142309 - Last Review: October 31, 2006 - Revision: 2.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
kbnetwork KB142309

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