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Windows 7: SMB in W7 - a question

07 Jun 2018   #1

SMB in W7 - a question

A guy is trying to tell me that my W7 Ultimate 64bit pc should contain the Server Message Block protocols (SMBv1, SMBv2 and SMBv3).

He cites the attached image as an example of the presence of SMBv1 in W7.

However, I believe this screen shot to be spurious because, AFAIK, it's from a W10 computer.

It certainly doesn't reflect what I see in my W7 Windows Features screen. That is, no sign of any SMB protocols. However, my machine hasn't been fully stocked with Windows updates for some years, so my colleague may be correct.

So here's my question\request: If you have a fully updated W7 computer, could you kindly take a look at your Windows Features screen and see if there's any sign of SMBv1 (as shown in the attached screen shot)?


Attached Images
SMB in W7 - a question-windows-features.png 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2018   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

Not in mine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2018   #3


SIW2: Thanks. I thought the guy was wrong but I wanted to make sure before I told him so.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

08 Jun 2018   #4
Paul Black

7 HP SP1 64-bit Vista HB SP2 32-bit Linux Mint 18.3

Hi teckneeculler,

I have just checked and it is not in mine either.

I hope this helps!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2018   #5

Windows 10 Pro x64 x3, Ubuntu

The Small Message Block, (SMBv1), protocol was the one that was compromised in Windows 7 by last years Wannacry Malware attack and prompted the issue of a special security patch, from Microsoft, to protect the user, which I think completely removed all reference and access to the function for W7 Users

On windows ten the segment of the add/remove features looked identical, in version 1709, to the image posted, so that may be the source of the image .

It has since changed a little, because of serious issues due to to many embedded Linux/ Unix Operating firmware in Smart TVs and NAS systems and other Tech Hardware totally relying on SMBv1 to operate over a network for streaming and access purposes, the SMBv1 protocol is switched off but the option to turn it back on is still present. This is not a major issue in Windows 10 as the system was immune to the vulnerability in all but a minor way which has already been patched.

I am not sure but I think on Windows Seven you need to make registry changes to reactivate the SMB protocol if your systems require it (SMBv2 & SMBv3 were never suspect with regards to the vulnerability but Microsoft have taken a clumsy route to show they are doing something )
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2018   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

The guy is right, but not because what he thinks.
First as you note, the screenshot comes from Windows 10, so it's mostly irrelevant for Windows 7. Also, updates in 7 are also irrelevant, that option never comes to appear (as long as I know).

All boils down to the history of the SMB protocol:

Up to XP, SMBv1 was the only thing available and was included in every single Windows version.

Since Vista, MS added SMBv2 while keeping SMBv1 (for backwards compatibility). 7 also used the very same setup so it could connect with pre-Vista computers and enjoy the upgraded versions from latter ones. There was no real need to ever disable SMBv1 until recently when a vulnerability was discovered (and now it's patched). Control panel never offered an easy option to disable it, mainly because it wasn't needed.

Windows 8 introduced SMBv3 in addition to keeping 1 and 2 for compatibility reasons. I don't remember if the control panel already has a setting to disable SMBv1.

Windows 10 came with a minor upgrade to SMBv3, but still keeping SMBv1 and SMBv2. But at this time, MS is really determined to kill XP out of existence, so it added the setting, disabling it effectively prevents communication with pre-Vista network shares. Also, since SMBv1 is already an aging protocol with a known vulnerability, it makes sense to provide an option to disable it.

So yes, Windows 7 does contain SMBv1, not because of the screenshot, but because it always has.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2018   #7

Windows 10 Pro x64 x3, Ubuntu

The whole thing with Wanncry did cause chaos here in the UK, as the national Health Board was still running Unpatched versions of Windows 7 (they had been notified of the availability of the patch but just forgot to do anything about it and ended up losing a significant amount of data to the attack - all backed up but not really the issue

The same things happened with some government departments but that is to be expected

The Health service also had some systems still running on XP but this was not deemed an issue as they were all embedded operating systems isolated from networks and especially the Internet
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2018   #8


PaulBlack: Thanks for checking

Barman58 and Alejandro85:Very informative, thanks guys.

I'm fairly sure I may have had an active SMBv1 at some time, but I seem to recall I opted for Microsoft's hotfix last year that deactivated it. However, I don't recall ever seeing it listed in Windows Features.

But what of SMBv2 and SMBv3? Do W7 systems still have these protocols on board?

Are they essential to file sharing? I mean, would file sharing between say, home networked computers, work if those protocols were NOT in place?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Jun 2018   #9

Windows 10 Pro x64 x3, Ubuntu

The SMB protocols are microsoft software, created to interface with the pre-existing SAMBA protocol used for many years by Unix systems (and more recently with Linux, (or baby Unix ). Microsoft to Microsoft networking does not use SMB but other technologies such as Windows Networking,(Netbios), IPv4 & IPv6 and until recently Homegroup,(LLDP), (depreciated in the latest Windows 10 1803, as very few people actually used it).

One issue that does arise due to the full depreciation of SMBv1 and Homegroup, other than the interfacing with older Unix/Linux SAMBA systems, is that older versions of Windows networking use a system known as the Master Browser to keep records of what the various network systems are and how to connect to them, unfortunately this system dates back to the original NT3.5 and still needs SMBv1 to operate correctly. Microsoft have added a couple of new services in the latest Windows versions to take over this duty but forgot to start them correctly by default which meant that a lot of systems needed manual changes to correct this at the 1803 update
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Jun 2018   #10


Barman58, thanks again.

My interest stems from my so-far-unsuccessful attempts to establish contact with a networked Linux device.

I was told that the SMB protocol must be in active in the Windows server for this to work. Hence my question about the actual existence of such protocols in my W7 machine.

Alternatively (and I'm guessing here) perhaps I should install Samba Server on my computer? I actually downloaded this app but it didn't appear to have a executable, so I've no idea how to install it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 SMB in W7 - a question

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