Ubuntu natty installed and I want to see the windows machines on my home network. I cannot browse the network from the Ubuntu machine, nor can I see it from any win machine (mix of win7 and vista). Ubuntu machine is wireless and working just fine. I would like to share files across the network as well. Any help would be awesome! Thanks!
When networking with Vista and Windows 7, you need to disable all of the security within the network settings of all windows machines. The "HomeGroup" function adds a type of authentication that will not function with the Samba client that Ubuntu uses to access Windows shares. Turning all this off will allow you to browse. The individual permissions of your shared folders may keep you from reading or writing, so be sure to check those as well. Also, make sure you have your network in the Windows machines to be a "private" network, realxing the firewall a bit.
Use ipconfig in a dos shell to get the ip address. On Ubuntu use ifconfig in a terminal to get the same.
Now try to ping your boxen. If they ping then you know that they are 'on the same network'.
You can also put the IP address in the explorer window address bar on the Windows PC. If you have your shares etup correctly on Ubuntu machine it will show them.
A more useful tool from the Ubuntu box is zenmap. You have to run it as root and install nmap dependency. This lets you see everything visible on your network, even if you cannot see it normally as it is a clever network scanning tool.
Establish the basic connectivity, make sure your shares are setup, make sure they can be found by IP and then you will be part way there.
Another thing is you need DHCP rather than static IPs unless you want lots of 'hosts' files in your boxen.