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Attach, Map drives and login to a "Novell server" from a pure DOS PC

Posted on 2004-10-18
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-06-21
We are moving to a totally Microsoft house for all of our servers.

We have a single NDS Tree containing three Netware servers. All going away soon.
One of these supports a legacy payroll system.

I have purchased and installed "File and Print Services For Netware 5.00" on a new W2k server.
I have placed a copy of the payroll application onto this w2k server.
This old DOS based application runs perfectly from this new W2k server, all my workstations running Novell Client can connect to this new W2k server as if it was a Novell server and the supervisors can tend to their employees in the payroll applcation.

However, there is one PC that is pure DOS and must be pure DOS. This workstation has special ODI drivers and other network shims that allow this workstation to collect employee punches from time clocks. It brings these "in and out" punch times into the payrolll application. The clocks have ip address, but the communication is done via SPX/Ipx.

This pure DOS PC must be logged into the server that has the payroll application on it. If it is rebooted for any reason, it must be capable of attaching and logging back into the server.

The problem is this:
I can use one of my real Novell servers as the perferred server in the Startnet.bat of this DOS pc and it will login to that server. Then I can MAP a drive to my new server and run my application, everything works fine.

However, if I put my new server name, (the w2k server with Windows services for Netware on it), into this DOS pc's startnet.bat, and reboot the PC, it looks like the PC attaches to the  new server, but then nothing but drive mapping errors appear. I then try to MAP a drive but can not.
It is as if the drive mappings for the original server are trying to run but they are wrong for this new named server. I do not know were those mapping are specified. Where do they run from?

I cannot depend these workaround of logging into a current Real Novell server and then MAP to this new server since all Novell servers are going away. I want to login in bindry mode, once I am attached and my drives have mapped.

Once the DOS pc runs the PS= line in this startnet.bat line, all I get are drive mapping errors.
And the box is not logged into any server.
CD \nwclient
lh LSL
lh E100BODI
lh NETX PS=BROADST-TIME   {this seems to work} then nothing follows but mapping failure messages.
c:\rwin\rodi /stacks:7
LOGIN kronos

How does one Attach, Map drives and login to a "Novell server" from a pure DOS PC?
Since I am able to login to this server on Widows 2k workstations running Novell client, I feel the problem is my lack of knowledge in using DOS and how Novell maps drives?
Question by:kronosmen
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LVL 34

Expert Comment

ID: 12347352
"We are moving to a totally Microsoft house for all of our servers."

Sorry to hear you're moving to an environment that will cost your organization 2x to 3x as much to own and administrate as your NetWare environment. Enjoy the next iteration of NetSky, Slammer, Phatbot or whatever else some pimple-faced script kiddie hits you with. Nothing like having any 16-year-old twerp in Germany being able to bring your entire network to its knees on a whim, is there? Have fun with the endless "critical" security patches you'll be applying. And good luck....you'll need it.

"I have purchased and installed "File and Print Services For Netware 5.00" on a new W2k server"

Well, that was your second mistake. But if you fell for the first sales pitch, I imagine the M$ sales rep said to himself "Why not fleece this guy a second time?"

FPSNW is *crap*. It is *deliberately crippled* garbageware. It makes the W2K server look like a NetWare v2x server. Since you've mentioned NDS, I *infer* (since you didn't bother to state) that you have NetWare v4.x or later. From the batch file, I see the DOS workstation uses IPX, and while NetWare hasn't needed IPX for about 5 YEARS, it does still support it, even in the latest version (v6.5). So, as you see, the technology in FPSNW is WAY behind.

Anyway, that's your problem - you workstation is using client software built and configured around a NetWare v4.x or later environment, and FPSNW is emulating a NetWare v2.x environment, and badly at that. I really don't have a fix for it, altho perhaps another Expert who hasn't forgotten as much about the DOS client as I have will chime in.

Another alternative, if you have NetWare v5.1 or later, is to install Native File Access Protocols (NFAP) on the NetWare servers and make them look like CIFS boxes. Then you can continue to use the DOS PC exactly like it is, but the NetWare servers look like Windoze boxes to Windoze clients (just without the BSODs).
LVL 35

Expert Comment

ID: 12348486
You have a Windows problem.  I suggest you find a Windows solution, if one is to be found.

Since Microsoft doesn't support MS-DOS any more, good luck with that.  You may have to bite that next bullet and throw out your fully-functional-it-works-why-fix-what's-not-broke time clock system and replace it with one that works with Windows.

I hate to be cold about this, but the thought that you are looking for a way to use a Microsoft product with a Microsoft product, here in the NetWare TA, should make you question the wisdom of throwing away NetWare and putting all your eggs in the Microsoft basket in the first place.

Author Comment

ID: 12349576
Our Novell is version 3.12. on the DOS box it might be 3.11

The decison whether to use Novell or Microsoft servers is so far above me, I can't even see that high in the organizational tree
My job is to make the old payroll system work on a W2k server.
It does work using File and Print Services For Netware 5.0.

My problem is not knowing what are the steps that the DOS box takes using the  DOS novell client to attach and login and run drive mappings. All Novell world stuff, I guess.

The autoexec.bat file has a PATH statement in it, and now I'm reading Novell converts that to a drive mapping? True?
I already posted the startnet.bat contents above.

So, with my new W2k novell box name in the "PS=" , it seems to attach.
But then a bunch of drive mapping errors appear.
Where are those drive mappings defined?  In what file?

I read that there is a NET$LOG.DAT file in the SYS\Public folder on the server.  I modified it to reflect the propermappings but it did not seem to have an effect.

I checked and the login.exe is in the PUBLIC folder as well as several other places.

The contents of the NET$LOG.DAT file calls a USER.SCR and I also changed that to reflect the proper path.  NO CHANGE.
Then I commented out the USER.SCR reference in NET$LOG.DAT file. NO Change.  Still get no drive mappings. Just drive map errors.

What are the steps Novell client under DOS takes from boot up to the red Novell login banner?
What files and what scripts run to create the drive mappings?

Thanks in advance,

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LVL 34

Expert Comment

ID: 12349836
" Our Novell is version 3.12"

<pet peeve>
"Novell" is a company. "NetWare" is a product. You have a "NetWare version 3.12".
</pet peeve>
Wow, what an ancient version. So, you do NOT have NDS after all? In your original problem description, you quite plainly stated you have a single NDS tree. However, NDS was not introduced until NetWare v4.x, and was never back-ported to NetWare v3. Please clarify what exact version you have.

"The autoexec.bat file has a PATH statement in it, and now I'm reading Novell converts that to a drive mapping? True?"

Yes, those are translated into SEARCH Drive Mappings in the NetWare environment. They do consume drive letters.

"Where are those drive mappings defined?  In what file?"

These are stored in the System Login Script (NetWare v3, found in SYS:SYSTEM\NET$LOG.DAT, as I recall...buts its been about 5 or 6 years, so I may be wrong) or the Container Login Script (NetWare v4 and later, found in the NDS/eDirectory object for the OU, not as a separate file).

"What files and what scripts run to create the drive mappings?"

This is *highly* dependent on the VERSION of NetWare, which is still in question.
LVL 30

Accepted Solution

pgm554 earned 1500 total points
ID: 12352712
You Wrote:

(I have placed a copy of the payroll application onto this w2k server.
This old DOS based application runs perfectly from this new W2k server, all my workstations running Novell Client can connect to this new W2k server as if it was a Novell server and the supervisors can tend to their employees in the payroll application.)
Why, is the APP dependent on IPX /SPX?

If not, just use a boot floppy and attach to the W2K box as a regular Windows DOS client.
Sounds to me as if you didn't need the GFNW services in the first place.

Bear this in mind, DOS only clients in a Windows env run like crap.

As for your mapping errors, your windows server login script is where you are getting map commands from, not the Novell client.
DOS does not understand NET USE as a drive mapping command (which is how Windoze maps). MAP is an external command found in the Netware Public folder that the Netware requester understands.

If your legacy app is dependent on DOS and IPX/SPX.Guess what ?You have one of two choices to make, either upgrade the APP to a version that fully supports Windoze or you gotta keep the legacy box in some way shape or form.

M$ realized that a lot of legacy apps that ran fine on NT 4, don’t run fine on W2K and above. Their solution was to buy Virtual PC and "nudge" folks to run legacy apps on virtual machines within a virtualized environment such as W2K and above.

What you may have to end up doing is keeping the 3.12 box running on a W2K box by way of virtual machine.(Virtual PC or VM Ware).I prefer VMWare ,you don't have to deal with registering it.

Author Comment

ID: 12353662
The DOS pc uses IPX to talk to the IP address of the time clocks from inside of the application.
Threre are ODI drivers and other shims that allow this communication to happen.

I spent two weeks trying to get a windows PC to talk to the ethernet clocks.
Tried all kinds of NIC cards and drivers with no success
Using a Windows box, it was effortless communicating with the MS server. Did not need any Netware client.

So, at that point I read a Expert Exchange post with a problem close to mine.
It was suggested that he use Windows Services. He reported back that it had solved his problem.

I will do some reading on virtual machines. It sounds promising.

LVL 34

Expert Comment

ID: 12365278
"The DOS pc uses IPX to talk to the IP address of the time clocks from inside of the application."

Huh? That makes absolutely no sense. Uses IPX to talk to the IP address of the clock? IPX and IP are separate and distinct protocol sets. You can't use IPX to talk to an IP device. You could run a router/gateway that had some sort of translation table that would unpack the IPX packet from the Ethernet frame, extract the data payload, and re-pack it into an IP packet and insert that packet into an Ethernet frame for transmission to the IP device. But a DOS workstation ain't gonna be doing that sort of heavy lifting.

I think you need to step back and gain a better understanding of the networking technologies involved.
LVL 30

Expert Comment

ID: 12366403
Speaking of confusion:

We have a single NDS Tree containing three Netware servers. All going away soon.
One of these supports a legacy payroll system.

3.x servers don't work in an NDS tree schema and for the most part can't be part of an NDS tree.
I vaguely remember a utility that would let a 3.x server been seen in an NDS tree, but I don't remember it working well, if at all.

Author Comment

ID: 12367462
We have a NDS tree running 4.11.
All the Windows 98 PC, have Netware client 3.4 on them. From Novell, not the Windows client for Netware.
All the Windows 2ks desktop have the latest version of Netware client on them for that operating system.

This ONE box is pure DOS, and when it boots up the screen echo's back a line that says Novelll a date and 3.12

This PC logs onto the Novell server in bindry mode ( /b), that the Kronos application is installed on and then you fire up the application .exe at the command line with the switch (+s), this makes this PC the "scheduling pc". There can only be one pc at one time as the scheduling pc. What this means is that this pc will run various keystoke files and other scheduled functions "from within the kronos application". One of these functions is to poll the time clocks. In some installtions Kronos uses Modems on their clocks,  in other installations they use ethernet to communicate with the clocks. The network card in this pc is capable of communicating with these ethernet clocks.  I spent several weeks trying to duplicate this communication with various PC's, various OS's, various NIC cards, etc.
At that point, I decided to keep the DOS pc since it can communicate with the clocks and try to get that PC to connect to the new Windows 2000 server. The Windows Services for Netware 5.0 seems to fit that requirement.

The payroll application is Kronos version 8D for DOS.
The docs for it says that the application uses IPX to communicate with the clocks. It then goes on to say that only the ODI drivers and shims that the Kronos company provides will work on this "DOS collection PC". It gives no further details. There is a .dat file in the Kronos apps folder on the server. The docs claim that this file is what Kronos uses to communicate with the clocks.It contains four lines.
001003 P - - - -     This is a clock      "The doc's indicate that the leading six digit number is the password and
001004 P - - - -       clock                     the trailing four dashes seperated by dashes are critical"
001005 P - - - -       clock
001006 P - - - -     DOS collection PC

When the clocks were installed the Konos installer required us to give him static IP address for the clocks and a static IP address for this DOS PC.  Both the clocks and this one DOS pc have to be on the same segment.

There is an small exe  in the utility directory on the server called ping.exe, that when fired up requests the six digit password for a clock. It then either comfirms communication with that clock using only that password, no IP address is entered. This utility is used to test communications with the clocks.

The Kronos company no longer supports this version of their product. In fact they will not even discuss it.

As of this afternoon, I am now able to login to the new Windows server.

pgm554 was correct. The mapping must come from the Windows server. I am now running a script from there and have the drive mappings working correctly.

EVERYTHING is working, almost.

We now have the DOS pc logging into the new W2k server.

The script runs and the mapping are correct.

From the DOS pc, we can fire up the exe for the application.  The application's scheduling functions are working and the Kronos application continues to communicate with the clocks from that DOS pc.
The application is pulling the employee punches from the clocks and updating the sync'ing the time of day with the clocks as usual.

All we need to accomplish at this point is to: determine is we are logging into the server in bidery mode, since the tree will be going away.

Thanks to all of you for your help. I am awarding the points to pgm554.


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