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Background: Small home network including a media server which is doubling as a NAS. Server is running both smbd and nmbd samba components and the aim is to run this as a workgroup rather than a domain (not enough machines to make a domain worthwhile).

If I try and map a network drive on my partner's Windows m/c using the direct UNC path with the IP address I can do so and I have correct read/write permissions based on the connecting user. If I try and browse to the share through the workgroup it prompts for the password and won't let me access it.

The same behaviour is exhibited on my Linux PC, I can browse straight to the share using the UNC path, enter my credentials and I have the correct access. If I try and browse to it via Network as soon as I click on the WORKGROUP icon it prompts me for my credentials and refuses access (just keeps prompting again and again).

I suspect in my mission to lock the server down as tight as possible I have locked out something that was needed for browsing, but I can't find what it is. The server smb.conf is below:

[20:14 gavin@hostname ~] > sudo cat /etc/samba/smb.conf 
#
# Sample configuration file for the Samba suite for Debian GNU/Linux.
#
#
# This is the main Samba configuration file. You should read the
# smb.conf(5) manual page in order to understand the options listed
# here. Samba has a huge number of configurable options most of which 
# are not shown in this example
#
# Some options that are often worth tuning have been included as
# commented-out examples in this file.
#  - When such options are commented with ";", the proposed setting
#    differs from the default Samba behaviour
#  - When commented with "#", the proposed setting is the default
#    behaviour of Samba but the option is considered important
#    enough to be mentioned here
#
# NOTE: Whenever you modify this file you should run the command
# "testparm" to check that you have not made any basic syntactic 
# errors. 

#======================= Global Settings =======================

[global]

## Browsing/Identification ###

# Change this to the workgroup/NT-domain name your Samba server will part of
   workgroup = OURHOME

#NetBIOS name
   netbios name = hostname

# server string is the equivalent of the NT Description field
   server string = Media Server

# Windows Internet Name Serving Support Section:
# WINS Support - Tells the NMBD component of Samba to enable its WINS Server
   wins support = yes

# WINS Server - Tells the NMBD components of Samba to be a WINS Client
# Note: Samba can be either a WINS Server, or a WINS Client, but NOT both
;   wins server = w.x.y.z

# This will prevent nmbd to search for NetBIOS names through DNS.
   dns proxy = no

#### Networking ####

# The specific set of interfaces / networks to bind to
# This can be either the interface name or an IP address/netmask;
# interface names are normally preferred
   interfaces = 192.168.2.0/24 10.77.85.0/24

# Only bind to the named interfaces and/or networks; you must use the
# 'interfaces' option above to use this.
# It is recommended that you enable this feature if your Samba machine is
# not protected by a firewall or is a firewall itself.  However, this
# option cannot handle dynamic or non-broadcast interfaces correctly.
   bind interfaces only = yes



#### Debugging/Accounting ####

# This tells Samba to use a separate log file for each machine
# that connects
   log file = /var/log/samba/log.%m

# Cap the size of the individual log files (in KiB).
   max log size = 1000

# If you want Samba to only log through syslog then set the following
# parameter to 'yes'.
#   syslog only = no

# We want Samba to log a minimum amount of information to syslog. Everything
# should go to /var/log/samba/log.{smbd,nmbd} instead. If you want to log
# through syslog you should set the following parameter to something higher.
   syslog = 0

# Do something sensible when Samba crashes: mail the admin a backtrace
   panic action = /usr/share/samba/panic-action %d


####### Authentication #######

# Server role. Defines in which mode Samba will operate. Possible
# values are "standalone server", "member server", "classic primary
# domain controller", "classic backup domain controller", "active
# directory domain controller". 
#
# Most people will want "standalone sever" or "member server".
# Running as "active directory domain controller" will require first
# running "samba-tool domain provision" to wipe databases and create a
# new domain.
   server role = standalone server

# If you are using encrypted passwords, Samba will need to know what
# password database type you are using.  
   passdb backend = tdbsam

   obey pam restrictions = yes

# This boolean parameter controls whether Samba attempts to sync the Unix
# password with the SMB password when the encrypted SMB password in the
# passdb is changed.
   unix password sync = yes

# For Unix password sync to work on a Debian GNU/Linux system, the following
# parameters must be set (thanks to Ian Kahan <<kahan@informatik.tu-muenchen.de> for
# sending the correct chat script for the passwd program in Debian Sarge).
   passwd program = /usr/bin/passwd %u
   passwd chat = *Enter\snew\s*\spassword:* %n\n *Retype\snew\s*\spassword:* %n\n *password\supdated\ssuccessfully* .

# This boolean controls whether PAM will be used for password changes
# when requested by an SMB client instead of the program listed in
# 'passwd program'. The default is 'no'.
   pam password change = yes

# This option controls how unsuccessful authentication attempts are mapped
# to anonymous connections
   map to guest = bad user

########## Domains ###########

#
# The following settings only takes effect if 'server role = primary
# classic domain controller', 'server role = backup domain controller'
# or 'domain logons' is set 
#

# It specifies the location of the user's
# profile directory from the client point of view) The following
# required a [profiles] share to be setup on the samba server (see
# below)
;   logon path = \\%N\profiles\%U
# Another common choice is storing the profile in the user's home directory
# (this is Samba's default)
#   logon path = \\%N\%U\profile

# The following setting only takes effect if 'domain logons' is set
# It specifies the location of a user's home directory (from the client
# point of view)
;   logon drive = H:
#   logon home = \\%N\%U

# The following setting only takes effect if 'domain logons' is set
# It specifies the script to run during logon. The script must be stored
# in the [netlogon] share
# NOTE: Must be store in 'DOS' file format convention
;   logon script = logon.cmd

# This allows Unix users to be created on the domain controller via the SAMR
# RPC pipe.  The example command creates a user account with a disabled Unix
# password; please adapt to your needs
; add user script = /usr/sbin/adduser --quiet --disabled-password --gecos "" %u

# This allows machine accounts to be created on the domain controller via the 
# SAMR RPC pipe.  
# The following assumes a "machines" group exists on the system
; add machine script  = /usr/sbin/useradd -g machines -c "%u machine account" -d /var/lib/samba -s /bin/false %u

# This allows Unix groups to be created on the domain controller via the SAMR
# RPC pipe.  
; add group script = /usr/sbin/addgroup --force-badname %g

############ Misc ############

# Using the following line enables you to customise your configuration
# on a per machine basis. The %m gets replaced with the netbios name
# of the machine that is connecting
;   include = /home/samba/etc/smb.conf.%m

# Some defaults for winbind (make sure you're not using the ranges
# for something else.)
;   idmap uid = 10000-20000
;   idmap gid = 10000-20000
;   template shell = /bin/bash

# Setup usershare options to enable non-root users to share folders
# with the net usershare command.

# Maximum number of usershare. 0 (default) means that usershare is disabled.
;   usershare max shares = 100

# Allow users who've been granted usershare privileges to create
# public shares, not just authenticated ones
   usershare allow guests = yes

#======================= Share Definitions =======================

#[homes]
#   comment = Home Directories
#   browseable = no

# By default, the home directories are exported read-only. Change the
# next parameter to 'no' if you want to be able to write to them.
   read only = yes

# File creation mask is set to 0700 for security reasons. If you want to
# create files with group=rw permissions, set next parameter to 0775.
   create mask = 0700

# Directory creation mask is set to 0700 for security reasons. If you want to
# create dirs. with group=rw permissions, set next parameter to 0775.
   directory mask = 0700

# By default, \\server\username shares can be connected to by anyone
# with access to the samba server.
# The following parameter makes sure that only "username" can connect
# to \\server\username
# This might need tweaking when using external authentication schemes
   valid users = %S

# Un-comment the following and create the netlogon directory for Domain Logons
# (you need to configure Samba to act as a domain controller too.)
;[netlogon]
;   comment = Network Logon Service
;   path = /home/samba/netlogon
;   guest ok = yes
;   read only = yes

# Un-comment the following and create the profiles directory to store
# users profiles (see the "logon path" option above)
# (you need to configure Samba to act as a domain controller too.)
# The path below should be writable by all users so that their
# profile directory may be created the first time they log on
;[profiles]
;   comment = Users profiles
;   path = /home/samba/profiles
;   guest ok = no
;   browseable = no
;   create mask = 0600
;   directory mask = 0700

#[printers]
#   comment = All Printers
#   browseable = no
#   path = /var/spool/samba
#   printable = yes
#   guest ok = no
#   read only = yes
#   create mask = 0700

# Windows clients look for this share name as a source of downloadable
# printer drivers
#[print$]
#   comment = Printer Drivers
#   path = /var/lib/samba/printers
#   browseable = yes
#   read only = yes
#   guest ok = no
# Uncomment to allow remote administration of Windows print drivers.
# You may need to replace 'lpadmin' with the name of the group your
# admin users are members of.
# Please note that you also need to set appropriate Unix permissions
# to the drivers directory for these users to have write rights in it
;   write list = root, @lpadmin

[media]
comment = Media Drive
path = /mnt/media
public = no
browseable = yes
writeable = yes
create mask = 0770
force create mode = 0770
locking = yes
valid users = @smbmedia

#[fileshare]
#comment = File Share
#path = /mnt/data/public
#public = no
#browseable = yes
#writeable = yes
#create mask = 0770
#force create mode = 0770
#locking = yes
#valid users = @smbpublic

I do find many of these entries in /var/log/samba/log.nmbd

[2016/08/23 19:58:03.428612,  0]     ../source3/nmbd/nmbd_browsesync.c:354(find_domain_master_name_query_fail)
  find_domain_master_name_query_fail:
  Unable to find the Domain Master Browser name OURHOME<1b> for the     workgroup OURHOME.
  Unable to sync browse lists in this workgroup.

Any help in making the workgroup browseable would be much appreciated.

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I know answering one's own question isn't necessarily the best etiquette, but I've logged here how I resolved the problem in case others search for the same issue.

Following a detailed review of the official Samba documentation, I have resolved the main problem I was having (not being able to browse the workgroup and browse to the share was fixed by adding the following to my smb.conf

local master = yes
preferred master = yes
os level = 65

I'm still seeing the error in the log file, despite the server now being explicitly defined as the local master, but it isn't affecting my usage anymore.

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