WINS Registration and IP Address Behavior for Microsoft Cluster Server

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This article details WINS registration and IP address behavior for Microsoft Cluster Server.

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During the installation of Microsoft Cluster Server, network names are required for each adapter. This "network name" is a label used to differentiate which group of adapters should be created on which IP Address. This IP Address then inherits the TCP/IP properties of the adapter bound to this network on the active node. NetBIOS names are registered based on dependencies for that NetBIOS name.


Criteria: Node X and Node Y both are dual-homed computers with one network interface card (NIC) used for client and internal communications and a dedicated NIC for internal use only. The client adapters are assigned the network name Corpnet. For clarity, only the client side adapters will be discussed in this example. Private adapters should not register with WINS.
Adapter on Node X registers with WINS Server A Adapter on Node Y registers with WINS Server B
IP Address is registered with Microsoft Cluster Server as a virtual IP Address NetBIOS Name WOLFPACK depends on

Whichever node owns the group that the IP address and network name are in will register the NetBIOS Name Wolfpack with the WINS server associated with its IP address when the NetBIOS name is brought online. That is, if Node X owns the group WOLFPACK on, it will register with WINS Server A. If Node Y owns the group, it will register on WINS Server B. This could have potential name resolution issues. For ease of use, adapters with client side access should point to the same WINS servers.

For additional information, please see the following article(s) in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
193890 Recommend WINS Configuration for Microsoft Cluster Server

139985 WINS Client Fails to Reach a Multihomed Server

150737 Setting Primary and Secondary WINS Server Options

185786 Recommended Practices for WINS


Article ID: 195462 - Last Review: January 10, 2015 - Revision: 3.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Enterprise Edition
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