Disable NetBIOS over TCP/IP

  BigMoFoT 09:26 15 Mar 05

Can anyone see any problems with doing this?

Basically I have an external ADSL router feeding 2 computers on a peer-to-peer. Initially I was sharing my drives which caused me problems to the fact that the sharing being exploited and viruses were trying to come through. I am now using mapped drives and have disabled NetBIOS over TCP/IP - the router does have a firewall with NAT and obviously I use AV in the form ofNorton 2005.

Any one see any potential problems?

  FelixTCat 10:20 15 Mar 05

No. You don't need NetBIOS. But why are you using peer-to-peer? Do you have a non-wireless router and a wireless connection?

You might also consider putting a firewall on each pc and running an anti-spyware program.

  BigMoFoT 20:03 15 Mar 05

Where does wireless come in to it? Peer-to-peer or a workgroup is usually referred to as 2 or 3 (or maybe more) computers connected via a hub using simple network shares isn't it?

Anyways point I'm trying to make is that the ADSL router offers a firewall and NAT facility but I was still getting attacked via my network shares, so I was wondering if disabling NetBIOS over TCP/IP is as good as it sounds. That way I would be blocking port 139. With NetBIOS over TCP/IP enabled my network shares would be open to an atack via that port.

Is that a better explanation?

  FelixTCat 23:31 15 Mar 05

I always understood peer-to-peer as being connections not using a router. What I was trying to understand was whether you had a USB adsl router on one pc and then a peer-to-peer connection to the second pc (wireless or otherwise) or whether both pcs were connected to an adsl router (not peer-to-peer).

You don't need NetBIOS to establish a network; TCP/IP is adequate. I don't think that the attacks were related to that; the sharing should not have extended to the internet if the firewall was properly configured anyway.

If you want to check your protection, go to this page: click here and scroll down to Shields Up and Leak Test and run those tests.

  BigMoFoT 08:58 16 Mar 05

You really have missed my point...

I've got a 4 port ADSL router/switch that is wired - lets clear that up.
Obvioulsy TCP/IP is used as the network protocol on my 'LAN' lets call it for arguments sake. By default NetBIOS, which by does not really support any type of routing allows applications and hardware to be shared affectivley over a network and is installed and set by default when windows is installed. However it will 'expose' your PC to the internet and allow an avenue of attack if you have any network shares and it will do this on port 139. I have turned of NetBIOS over TCP/IP as (hopefully shutting 139) , even tho I have AV software and a firewall built in to my router I was still getting virus attacks.
I was asking if removing NetBIOS was a good thing and if there was any pitfalls...

  FelixTCat 11:21 16 Mar 05

Thanks. I answered that in my first response. However, I like to try to understand what the set-up is that is being discussed, because that can affect the suggestions given.

For clarity: no, you do not need NetBIOS; TCP/IP is adequate. And if you were getting attacks from the internet, through port 139 or otherwise, you do have a problem with your firewall.

  BigMoFoT 12:30 16 Mar 05

Your not understanding the NetBIOS thing..

I am using TCP/IP but NetBIOS utilises any exisiting TCP/IP connections. So I am always using TCP/IP but I'm asking what happens if I turn NetBIOS off!!!!!

  Forum Editor 19:03 16 Mar 05

make sure that you aren't running any programs which need it in order to function.I don't think you've mentioned which operating environment is involved here, but be aware that any computers that are running an operating system prior to Windows 2000 will be unable to browse, locate, or create file and print share connections to a Windows 2000 computer with NetBIOS disabled.

I'm sure you know how to do the disabling, but just in case - here's what you do (in Windows XP):-

1. Right-click on "My Network Places", go to Properties.

2. Right-click on the NIC that your cable/DSL connects to, and choose Properties.

3. Select Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), and click on Properties.

4. Click on "Advanced", go to "WINS" tab, and chose Disable NetBios over TCP/IP.

5. When you are back at your Network Connections page, right-click on the Broadband selection.

6. Choose "Properties", click on the Networking tab.

7. Again, choose TCP/IP, Properties, Advanced, WINS, and select "disable NetBios over TCP/IP".

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