Why do we still need WINS?
Why, in this age of Windows Server 2003 R2, is it *still* a good idea to run WINS servers on your Active Directory network? Doesn't AD use DNS for name resolution? Yes. Isn't NetBIOS obsolete? Yes. Do any applications still use NetBIOS? Unfortunately, yes! Some of the common apps that need WINS servers in order to run effectively are:
- My Network Places (or Network Neighborhood) to quickly repopulate this browse list as the Browser service is still based on NetBIOS.
- Any third-party network applications that leverage the browse list to find network resources users can attach to. You can probably track these puppies down by monitoring activity on your WINS servers by logging perfmon counters on them.
When will NetBIOS ever go away? Sigh.
Cheers, Mitch Tulloch, MVP