3.4. Setting Master Browser Options
In order to handle local network browsers like the one shown in Figure 3-1, SMB/CIFS requires one computer to be designated a master browser. This computer collects data on the computers on the network and provides it to any computer that asks for the information. The clients then present the data to users in one form or another (Figure 3-1 being one example).
In fact, two types of SMB/CIFS master browsers exist. A local master browser handles browsing tasks on a single subnet. A domain master browser helps integrate multiple subnets. The local master browser is selected automatically by the computers on a network using a process known as an election. Samba provides options that influence how it participates in elections; you can "rig" an election so that Samba wins or loses it, as you see fit. Domain master browser status is acquired based on server configuration, and Samba provides options to control this process, as well. Chapter 5 describes these parameters in more detail. For the moment, though, if you don't want Samba to acquire either type of master browser status, you should add the following parameters to your smb.conf file's [global] section:
domain master = No local master = No os level = 0 preferred master = No
In fact, the first two options should be sufficient to keep Samba from acquiring master browser status; the last two options simply provide added insurance, should you accidentally mis-set the local master parameter. Of course, on some networks you might want Samba to acquire local master browser status; to do so, set the following options:
local master = Yes os level = 33 preferred master = Yes