Bridging IPX networks

Posted on 1998-09-22
Last Modified: 2010-05-18
Hi Everyone,

I've set up a linux box with two network cards attached to two physically separate networks.  Two kinds of prototcols run on these networks -- TCP/IP and IPX.  I've successfully bridged the TCP/IP network using IP masquerade.. pings from one to the other work fine, without any setup.

What I want to do is the same with IPX.  (One network is running netware 4.1, one running netware 4.11).  Ideally the linux box isn't doing anything except bridging IPX packets, it isn't necessary for the Novell users to even know about the linux box -- I just want users of one network to see servers on the other one.

I'd appeciate any help.  Caveat is that while I'm pretty good with TCP/IP, I know next to nothing about IPX.  

Question by:RjB
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Accepted Solution

aioudine earned 200 total points
ID: 1638107
Use Mars_nwe, a free NetWare(tm) emulator for Linux by Martin Stover
It's includes a RIP/SAP daemon that turns your Linux box into a fine IPX router.
Avilable to download from

Few thing to know:
1) Internal IPX net( work) number -
           the hexadecimal value of your "internal ipx-network"
           Each server should have different numbers  

2) IPX network number (external) -
           the hexadecimal value of your ipx-network
           Servers on same segment should have same IPX number

             for example

              ---------------NW ---------------Linux/Mars-------------------NW-------------------
Internal                   0x1                     0x2                       0x3
Extarenal    0x10               0x11                         0x12                   0x13

3) Which frame type to use - same as Netware server use:
    default for NW3.x Ethernet_802.3
    default for NW4.x Ethernet_802.2
    but many people use Ethernet_II

To obtaint IPX numbers and frame type used, ask Netware admin or type CONFIG on Netware console

PS. You may get additional help on LinWare mailng list
to subscribe send command "add linware" in mail  message body to address: "".

Author Comment

ID: 1638108
Thanks.. some questions?

are there any tools I can use (say on one of the PC's running netware) which would tell me that their IPX packets are using the linux box as a bridge (i.e. that I've done anything at all).

Is it necessary (since all I want to do is bridge) to set the linux box up as a netware server?

Thank again..


Author Comment

ID: 1638109
Just a note:  I've installed the Caldera IPX 1.0 package, loaded the ipx module, and added the two interfaces according to the frame types which I got from the novell person here.  

I disabled auto-interface and auto-primary because the README claims that Win95 machines do bogus things.  I manually added an interface for each network card, picked (at random) one interface as primary (what does primary mean?).

I installed -- next -- ncfps, and slist reported (at first) only one of the novell servers (there are two on different ethernets).  The one on the other network didn't show up until the next day.

I tried testing ncpmount which doesn't appear to be working.

As I said, the next day, someone came into my office to tell me that the Novell network appears to be bridged.  When I checked slist, both servers are being reported.  ncpmount is still failing.

Unfortunately, I can't be sure that the linux box is bridging the networks.  In the past (before we started experimenting with older PC's as network glue) machines which need to see both networks just had two ethernet cards installed.  I don't know that someone else isn't bridging which would account for slist reporting both servers.  Is there a way to see how IPX packets are being routed?

Again.. thanks for all your help.  



Expert Comment

ID: 1638110
Hi RjB,
1) I'm not familar with Caldera and don't know what they mean "primary"
2) It's not necesary to setup nwserver on linux, if need only IPX router (RIP/SAP router)
3) To setup router you may also use Volker Lendecke routing daemon
HOWTO is avilable at
4) To see how IPX packets routed use "track" command on linux
or "TRACK ON" on netware console
Description for caldera available at
For novell see TFM

Also you may use "DISPLAY NETWORKS" "DISPLAY SERVERS" on netware console
to see which servers and networks are visible to nw servers

BTW why you won't connect segment via hub or setup Netware server as router?
We have large internetwork with couple Unixes, Netware and NT, but all our segment are connected to Netware servers



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