Computers not showing up in Network ->Windows Explorer

By codyd56 ·
Hey guys, I'm the working IT dept. of a small business. When I started we had a horrible 3/4mbps internet connection going through an old router and even older switch and everyone's connections speeds were mismatched. I got a fiber internet connection in place, upgraded to an ASUS AC66U router, and swapped the switch out for an SG 102-24. So that's the basic layout of our network. Now I'm experiencing a few problems with what I believe is due to DNS name resolution (please keep in mind I've only had one networking class along with hands-on experience, and I'm stuck with this responsibility because I know the most out of anyone here).

My most crucial problem to fix right now is that I have a new computer (HP Pavilion) and I am not able to see ALMOST anything on my network. The computer is connected to the network through the wireless card, and is able to see my NAS, so that leads me to believe that it's connecting to the network and the switch just fine (the NAS is the only thing with a static IP, and that IP is assigned from a MAC address table in my router, which is acting as my DCHP server). I've tried all of the things like turning off the firewall, I have no anti-virus installed (just did a clean wipe and re-installed the OS), turned on Network Discovery and all of those options; none of this has helped.

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All Answers

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So have you looked in the WiFi Access Point

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Computers not showing up ...

And Bridged the Wireless and Wired LAN's together.

By default these are separated to prevent cross talk.


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Can you ping the workstations?

by kmthom In reply to Computers not showing up ...

Try pinging each workstation and device from one of the machines. Also, are you using an Active Directory or work-groups type setup? If you are not sure what Active Directory or a domain controller is, you are probably using work-groups.

Depending on your version of windows, you can do a simple Google search to find out how to change the computer names/work-groups. Try putting them all within the same group and test it. Make sure the individual computer names are different however!

Let us know how it goes,


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Try entering the full path to a known host in the network

by In reply to Computers not showing up ...

This comment builds on kmthom's comment.
You didn't say what version of Windows you are working on and if the the other members of the network are the same version.
Try pinging to a host name where you are sure of the exact host name and the shared drive/directory.
If successful with the ping test, trying pathing in the exact address to the share from an explorer address bar (\\hostname\DriveOrShare).
I have experienced this exact problem in the past and when I put the full path to the share , Windows all of a sudden sees the host AND all of the other hosts on the network.

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No luck so far...

by codyd56 In reply to Computers not showing up ...

I am able to ping everything on my network from my laptop EXCEPT for that computer. I believe I am using workgroup setup and yes the new computer is in the same workgroup. There's only about a dozen devices in this network so I'm fairly confident there are no computers with repeated names. My father is an network admin and he has suggested setting up a domain several times but I still have no idea what that is or if it will help, and I haven't really had time to research it all that much.

As for the bridge between the wireless and LAN, I am looking in the internet-based control panel and I do not see anything that jumps out at me as what you're talking about. Could it be called something different and I'm missing it?

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Subnet issue??

by Sysadmin/Babysitter In reply to Computers not showing up ...

1- since you are on a wireless network, everybody else connected to the SAME wireless router should be seen. (This assumes that the wireless connection is their/your ONLY connection)

2-If you are connected to the same router that the other users are connecting to (wired or wireless), can see the others?

3- try using a hub/switch as a connector to the other computers network, (rather than the router you are using.

4- Also, insure that NONE or ALL of the computers you are trying to see are Apple OS X computers.

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These are all Windows 7 Professional 64-bit computers

by codyd56 In reply to Computers not showing up ...

All computers are also receiving IP/subnet info via DHCP. I am not able to ping or direct the computer to any other computers on the network. I'm now apparently having issues with my laptop not being able to see other computers on the network also. I'll keep trying to work with what I've got, but does anyone think a domain controller or something else could fix this situation?

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Reponse To Answer

by donmars In reply to These are all Windows 7 P ...

I do not think setting up a Domain will "fix" your current situation since a client server system is way different to a workgroup setup. A domain would give you the results you want but your present problem seems totally related to the workgroup setup. Bear in mind that to set up a Domain means you would need to buy a NOS (network operating system) such as Server 2003 or 2010 if you are going all microsoft. You cannot set up a domain using only win 7 pc's these are all "clients" and only works in a workgroup talking to one another, where as a server is a central system where a server "serves" individual clients (desktops). Carefully examine your cable connections to the ports on your switch are correct, I assume you use a dedicated switch with a dedicated router and not a combination in one box.
If you are serving more than ...say ten users, then a client server system would be best but also require a greater degree of management and slightly more expertise. I am willing to bet this problem is related to how the switch is cabled. You may need to check that you need a crossover cable between similar devices also.

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Our network in short...

by codyd56 In reply to Computers not showing up ...

I have the fiber coming into the building which is then connected to my wireless router (which acts as my DHCP server) which has is connected to the Cisco Small Business unmanaged switch. Everything from the building that is ethernet connected is connected to that switch, and anything wireless connects to the router.

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