This is very similar to Referencing computers by their name between OS X and Windows operating systems but my question is of a different nature:

I can see my windows desktop in finder as a "shared" machine, because the host offers some shared files. It's listed by hostname, just like you would expect.

Why, then, can't I ping it (or, more importantly, what I really want to do - RDP into it) by it's hostname? Is there a specific discovery protocol SMB uses that provides the hostname, and that's how it gets it? Of course, I can ping the OSX machine from windows by hostname no problem.

Do I really need to install some needless daemon (Bonjour) just to be able to RDP into my machine without having to look up the IP every time the router decides to change it?

  • Finder probably got the names from Samba and Samba got the names via wins and resolv.conf doesn't do wins.
    – hkdtam
    May 17, 2016 at 5:35
  • Alternatively, you could reserve IP addresses on your DHCP server. I have no issues RDPing to Windows by name, but my addresses are fixed. I also fixed the Windows Master Browser to one always-on machine too.
    – Tetsujin
    May 17, 2016 at 6:41


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