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[Openvpn-users] Vista, Samba, WINS server - browse lists not working in same workgroup across VPN

  • Subject: [Openvpn-users] Vista, Samba, WINS server - browse lists not working in same workgroup across VPN
  • From: Florin Andrei <florin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 20 Aug 2007 11:35:20 -0700

Using OpenVPN-2.1 on a CentOS 5 server. One client is Windows Vista. 
There's also a local network behind the CentOS server, with a variety of 
systems, including an Ubuntu 7.04 workstation.

The OpenVPN clients are using a 192.168.x private range different from 
the one used on the local network (routed, not bridged VPN). However, 
all systems are part of the same workgroup, with the CentOS server 
acting as a WINS server for everything. CentOS is also a nameserver for 
all these networks.

Direct and reverse DNS works properly on all networks, including VPN. 
The local network and the VPN addresses are on different DNS domains.

When I boot Vista, it connects to OpenVPN automatically (run as service).

The problem is, when I open the Network window on Vista ("network 
neighborhood" used to be called on older Windows versions), I do not see 
the CentOS server and the Ubuntu workstation, even though they are part 
of the same Windows workgroup and WINS seems to work properly. All I see 
is the Vista system itself, but nothing else is listed automatically.

If I enter \\the-Ubuntu-workstations-name directly in Explorer on Vista, 
it does see the workstation and all its shares, I can upload/download 
files just fine. But it does not appear automatically in the "network 
neighborhood" list (or whatever is the proper name on Vista) no matter what.

I tried a variety of things, I tweaked smb.conf on the server and on the 
workstation, I played with Windows-specific options in the .ovpn file on 
Vista, etc. The list of things I tried is too long to put it here. 
Nothing seems to help.

I'm kind of stumped. Is there a "secret recipe" to make this work? Some 
kind of algorithm or checklist to go through?
I'm not even sure it's an OpenVPN issue. It might be it, or it might be 
Samba, or DNS, or Vista, or something else. I'm just kind of shooting in 
the dark.

Florin Andrei
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