Find information and the benefits of using the Windows Internet
Name Service (WINS).
What is WINS?
WINS (Windows Internet Name Service) resolves NetBIOS computer
names to IP addresses for WINS clients on a routed network.
WINS consists of two components: the WINS server, which handles
name queries and registrations, and the client software (NetBIOS
over TCP/IP), which queries for computer name resolution.
WINS also aids Master Browser computers in constructing browse
lists for Domains that span multiple subnets.
A WINS server is a Windows NT, Windows 2000 or WIndows .NET
server computer with WINS server software installed. When the
Microsoft TCP/IP protocol is installed under Windows NT, 2000 or
Windows 9x, WINS client software is installed automatically.
What are the Benefits of using WINS?
WINS provides a distributed database for registering and
querying dynamic computer name-to-IP address mappings in a routed
network environment. Centralized management of the computer name
database and the database replication policies, alleviate the need
for managing LMHOSTS files.
WINS provides the ability for clients on a Windows NT Server
network (including Windows NT, Windows for Workgroups, and LAN
Manager 2.x) to browse domains that span multiple subnets (or
WINS reduces the use of local broadcasts for name resolution
and allows users to locate computers on remote networks
automatically. Reducing local broadcasts reduces subnet
When dynamic addressing through DHCP results in new IP
addresses for computers that move between subnetworks, the changes
are updated automatically in the WINS database. Neither the user
nor the network administrator needs to make manual accommodations
for name resolution in such a case.