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Windows 7: A Windows 7 network share dropout problem

14 Oct 2009   #1
Sorb

Win7 x64
 
 
A Windows 7 network share dropout problem

I have two laptops both running Win7 Ultimate and connected wirelessly to a Billion 7404VGO. Each has its documents shared with "everyone". Initially I tried Homegroup but coudn't get that to work so went back to ordinary networking. With router freshly booted each computer can see the other's shares. If I keep working on a share on the other computer I can stay connected, but if I leave off to work on my own computer and come back later the shared files are all inaccessible. That is, each computer can still see the internet OK, but can't access the other's shares. Up comes a Diagnostic box and Win7 helpfully tells me to reboot the router. When I do that it's all OK again, until a few minutes of inactivity when the shares again become inaccessible. The same thing happens to a shared USB printer that's on one computer only - it's only accessible after a fresh router boot.

Any ideas?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Oct 2009   #2
Etihtsarom

7 Prof
 
 

First place I would look is power management. Sounds like the drives are spun down from idling. USB devices are also turned off to save power when idle. Normally.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Oct 2009   #3
Sorb

Win7 x64
 
 

Thanks for the idea, but it can't be that as it happens when both computers are in continuous use by two different people. If the router is freshly booted and then, from PC-1, I work on a file that's on PC-2 I can keep doing so for a long time, no problem. But if I stop working on the PC-2 file, or I don't go to access the PC-2 file for some time after router booting, I can't see PC-2 at all. Both computers keep their internet connection without any problems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

14 Oct 2009   #4
H2SO4

Win7x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Sorb View Post
Thanks for the idea, but it can't be that as it happens when both computers are in continuous use by two different people. If the router is freshly booted and then, from PC-1, I work on a file that's on PC-2 I can keep doing so for a long time, no problem. But if I stop working on the PC-2 file, or I don't go to access the PC-2 file for some time after router booting, I can't see PC-2 at all. Both computers keep their internet connection without any problems.
Given the fact that a router reboot helps, it may not have anything to do with the two PCs.

As a suggestion, test what happens when you reboot each PC individually the next time you're in a "problem" situation. In other words, leave the router alone but reboot PC1 and test whether that restores connectivity to PC2:

- Can you ping the other box by name? By IP? (in both directions)
- Can you connect to the shares on the other machine?

Then reboot just PC2 and run the same tests afterwards.

It may be the router itself which is for some reason actively or passively entering into "isolation" mode (clients can't communicate with each other).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2009   #5
Sorb

Win7 x64
 
 

Thanks for the suggesion. When I reboot the router each computer can see each other for about 5 minutes. They can ping each other by name and number. Once connectivity is lost the pings return "Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable." Rebooting the computers makes no difference to this...still unreachable by ping and still no connectivity to each other's shares. Internet connections are unaffected.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2009   #6
H2SO4

Win7x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Sorb View Post
Thanks for the suggesion. When I reboot the router each computer can see each other for about 5 minutes. They can ping each other by name and number. Once connectivity is lost the pings return "Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable." Rebooting the computers makes no difference to this...still unreachable by ping and still no connectivity to each other's shares. Internet connections are unaffected.
It all points to the router - except for the ping error message.

"Destination host unreachable" means "I'm not going to try because my network settings make it impossible to reach that target." In other words, the machine never actually sent a ping packet.

Can you paste the output of ROUTE PRINT (from a CMD prompt) when it's all working and once again when it says "destination host unreachable"? It should be interesting to see the differences.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2009   #7
Sorb

Win7 x64
 
 

Hi H2SO4 - I sincerely hope your name doesn't reflect the smell in your region! I'm in Kangaroo Point, Brisbane AU where it's fine! Thanks again for your help. Here's the info:

Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7600]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

C:\>ping 192.168.1.3

Pinging 192.168.1.3 with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=11ms TTL=128
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=128
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=1ms TTL=128
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=1ms TTL=128

Ping statistics for 192.168.1.3:
Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
Minimum = 1ms, Maximum = 11ms, Average = 3ms

C:\>route print
===========================================================================
Interface List
15...00 22 5f b5 e2 3e ......Bluetooth Device (Personal Area Network)
12...00 26 b9 00 92 bf ......Broadcom NetLink (TM) Gigabit Ethernet
11...00 21 6a 63 d6 96 ......Intel(R) WiFi Link 5300 AGN
1...........................Software Loopback Interface 1
16...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Microsoft ISATAP Adapter
13...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Teredo Tunneling Pseudo-Interface
17...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Microsoft ISATAP Adapter #2
26...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Microsoft ISATAP Adapter #3
===========================================================================

IPv4 Route Table
===========================================================================
Active Routes:
Network Destination Netmask Gateway Interface Metric
0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.1.254 192.168.1.4 30
127.0.0.0 255.0.0.0 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
127.0.0.1 255.255.255.255 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
127.255.255.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
192.168.1.0 255.255.255.0 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
192.168.1.4 255.255.255.255 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
192.168.1.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
224.0.0.0 240.0.0.0 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
224.0.0.0 240.0.0.0 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
255.255.255.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
255.255.255.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
===========================================================================
Persistent Routes:
Network Address Netmask Gateway Address Metric
0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.1.1 Default
===========================================================================

IPv6 Route Table
===========================================================================
Active Routes:
If Metric Network Destination Gateway
13 58 ::/0 On-link
1 306 ::1/128 On-link
13 58 2001::/32 On-link
13 306 2001:0:cf2e:3096:24c2:2721:3f57:fefb/128
On-link
11 286 fe80::/64 On-link
13 306 fe80::/64 On-link
13 306 fe80::24c2:2721:3f57:fefb/128
On-link
11 286 fe80::81d6:eb9:c819:a6b/128
On-link
1 306 ff00::/8 On-link
13 306 ff00::/8 On-link
11 286 ff00::/8 On-link
===========================================================================
Persistent Routes:
None

[Waited about 5 minutes for 192.168.1.3 to drop from view in Explorer]

C:\>ping 192.168.1.3

Pinging 192.168.1.3 with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.

Ping statistics for 192.168.1.3:
Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),

C:\>route print
===========================================================================
Interface List
15...00 22 5f b5 e2 3e ......Bluetooth Device (Personal Area Network)
12...00 26 b9 00 92 bf ......Broadcom NetLink (TM) Gigabit Ethernet
11...00 21 6a 63 d6 96 ......Intel(R) WiFi Link 5300 AGN
1...........................Software Loopback Interface 1
16...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Microsoft ISATAP Adapter
13...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Teredo Tunneling Pseudo-Interface
17...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Microsoft ISATAP Adapter #2
26...00 00 00 00 00 00 00 e0 Microsoft ISATAP Adapter #3
===========================================================================

IPv4 Route Table
===========================================================================
Active Routes:
Network Destination Netmask Gateway Interface Metric
0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.1.254 192.168.1.4 30
127.0.0.0 255.0.0.0 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
127.0.0.1 255.255.255.255 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
127.255.255.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
192.168.1.0 255.255.255.0 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
192.168.1.4 255.255.255.255 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
192.168.1.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
224.0.0.0 240.0.0.0 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
224.0.0.0 240.0.0.0 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
255.255.255.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 127.0.0.1 306
255.255.255.255 255.255.255.255 On-link 192.168.1.4 286
===========================================================================
Persistent Routes:
Network Address Netmask Gateway Address Metric
0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.1.1 Default
===========================================================================

IPv6 Route Table
===========================================================================
Active Routes:
If Metric Network Destination Gateway
13 58 ::/0 On-link
1 306 ::1/128 On-link
13 58 2001::/32 On-link
13 306 2001:0:cf2e:3096:24c2:2721:3f57:fefb/128
On-link
11 286 fe80::/64 On-link
13 306 fe80::/64 On-link
13 306 fe80::24c2:2721:3f57:fefb/128
On-link
11 286 fe80::81d6:eb9:c819:a6b/128
On-link
1 306 ff00::/8 On-link
13 306 ff00::/8 On-link
11 286 ff00::/8 On-link
===========================================================================
Persistent Routes:
None

C:\>
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2009   #8
H2SO4

Win7x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Sorb View Post
Hi H2SO4 - I sincerely hope your name doesn't reflect the smell in your region! I'm in Kangaroo Point, Brisbane AU where it's fine! Thanks again for your help. Here's the info:
The only unpleasant smell in northern Sydney is corruption

I'm rather confident your router is stuffed. The route tables are (unsurprisingly) unaltered by idling, yet for some reason the "destination host is unreachable." That's gotta be caused by an ARP-level problem.

Could you please do similar "good" and "bad" outputs for this command: ARP -VA

I'm virtually certain you'll see "negative" caching of the other comuter's MAC address in those ARP tables. The router - or rather its switch functionality - is preventing communication between the two machines.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2009   #9
Sorb

Win7 x64
 
 

Did you mean ARP -a -v? That's the only combination that seems to make sense from the diagnostics I get if I try -av. Herewith (the second set after the usual 4-5min wait for the disconnect):

Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7600]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

C:\> ping 192.168.1.3

Pinging 192.168.1.3 with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=20ms TTL=128
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=128
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=1ms TTL=128
Reply from 192.168.1.3: bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=128

Ping statistics for 192.168.1.3:
Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
Minimum = 1ms, Maximum = 20ms, Average = 7ms

C:\>ARP -a -v

Interface: 127.0.0.1 --- 0x1
Internet Address Physical Address Type
224.0.0.22 static
239.255.255.250 static
255.255.255.255 static

Interface: 192.168.1.4 --- 0xb
Internet Address Physical Address Type
192.168.1.1 00-04-20-12-4f-ee dynamic
192.168.1.3 00-13-e8-9b-68-d7 dynamic
192.168.1.254 00-04-ed-42-9f-54 dynamic
192.168.1.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static
224.0.0.252 01-00-5e-00-00-fc static
239.255.255.250 01-00-5e-7f-ff-fa static
255.255.255.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static

Interface: 0.0.0.0 --- 0xffffffff
Internet Address Physical Address Type
192.168.1.1 00-00-00-00-00-00 invalid
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static

Interface: 0.0.0.0 --- 0xffffffff
Internet Address Physical Address Type
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static
255.255.255.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static

C:\>ping 192.168.1.3

Pinging 192.168.1.3 with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.
Reply from 192.168.1.4: Destination host unreachable.

Ping statistics for 192.168.1.3:
Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),

C:\>ARP -a -v

Interface: 127.0.0.1 --- 0x1
Internet Address Physical Address Type
224.0.0.22 static
239.255.255.250 static
255.255.255.255 static

Interface: 192.168.1.4 --- 0xb
Internet Address Physical Address Type
192.168.1.1 00-04-20-12-4f-ee dynamic
192.168.1.3 00-13-e8-9b-68-d7 invalid
192.168.1.254 00-04-ed-42-9f-54 dynamic
192.168.1.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static
224.0.0.252 01-00-5e-00-00-fc static
239.255.255.250 01-00-5e-7f-ff-fa static
255.255.255.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static

Interface: 0.0.0.0 --- 0xffffffff
Internet Address Physical Address Type
192.168.1.1 00-00-00-00-00-00 invalid
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static

Interface: 0.0.0.0 --- 0xffffffff
Internet Address Physical Address Type
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static
255.255.255.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2009   #10
H2SO4

Win7x64
 
 

Good:

Interface: 192.168.1.4 --- 0xb
Internet Address Physical Address Type
192.168.1.1 00-04-20-12-4f-ee dynamic
192.168.1.3 00-13-e8-9b-68-d7 dynamic
192.168.1.254 00-04-ed-42-9f-54 dynamic
192.168.1.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static
224.0.0.252 01-00-5e-00-00-fc static
239.255.255.250 01-00-5e-7f-ff-fa static
255.255.255.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static


Bad:

Interface: 192.168.1.4 --- 0xb
Internet Address Physical Address Type
192.168.1.1 00-04-20-12-4f-ee dynamic
192.168.1.3 00-13-e8-9b-68-d7 invalid
192.168.1.254 00-04-ed-42-9f-54 dynamic
192.168.1.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static
224.0.0.22 01-00-5e-00-00-16 static
224.0.0.252 01-00-5e-00-00-fc static
239.255.255.250 01-00-5e-7f-ff-fa static
255.255.255.255 ff-ff-ff-ff-ff-ff static

The MAC address of the other machine is being negatively cached ("invalid") because repeated attempts to contact it have completely failed. The reason it continues to work if you don't let it idle is because the ARP table on the switch (router) is updated every time contact is made between two nodes - but that entry times out after a few minutes if there's no ongoing activity.

Try flashing the router's firmware. If that doesn't help, the router is physically pooched
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 A Windows 7 network share dropout problem




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