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September 27, 1993 No. 62

NetWare Virtual Loadable Modules (VLMs)

We have been receiving reports over the past several weeks regarding problems operating the NPL RunTime with Novell NetWare 4.0x and NetWare 3.1x using the new Virtual Loadable Module (VLM) workstation manager. Niakwa has confirmed that the problems are related specifically to the new VLM drivers. The nature of these problems is intermittent at best. Users have reported problems with file sharing and hogging and passing security. Others have had no problems at all. Needless to say the problems reported have not been consistent (it appears as if the problems vary as widely as the configurations).

Niakwa is currently working with Novell in an effort to resolve these problems. The recommended workaround is to continue using the older NETX.EXE or NETX.COM workstation shells. On systems running NetWare 3.11, this should pose no problems. However, newer NetWare 3.12 or 4.0x installations may not have these older shells available. In this case, contact Novell or an Authorized Novell Reseller to obtain the latest (older) NETX.EXE workstation shell.

On systems running NetWare 4.0x, the older NETX workstation shells are supported only in "bindery authentication" mode and cannot provide access to NetWare Directory Services (NDS). In this case, at least one workstation must continue to use the VLM drivers to perform system maintenance (the new NetWare 4.0x utilities use the new NDS calls which are not supported by the old NETX shell).

Another Technical Note will be issued as soon as Niakwa fully investigates this situation. In the mean time, any specific questions or problems regarding the NetWare VLM drivers or NetWare versions may be directed to Niakwa's Technical Support.

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