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If you're convinced that you are ready to start managing your files using Novell Open Enterprise Server on Linux, but you need more information, consider taking the Novell Integrating Novell Open Enterprise Server for Linux course (Course 3077). If you own, purchase or upgrade to the product by March 31, 2007, you can receive a 10 percent discount on instructor-led training through select Novell training partners.

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By now, you might be saying to yourself, "OK, I've learned some good things about how to perform some of my old familiar NetWare tasks on Linux. But what I really want to know is:"

  1. "How do I get my Novell Storage Services (NSS) volumes, which are the staple of most Novell networks, onto my Linux box, and"
  2. "Once they're there, how do I access them? I've always heard that accessing Linux from a computer running something other than Linux is extremely difficult."

The previous article in this series identified some of the main reasons for making the switch to Novell Open Enterprise Server on Linux. It also provided some tips to help you get started with your new Linux installation. In this article, you'll learn how to move, create and access your Novell Storage Services volumes with Novell Open Enterprise Server on Linux and we'll debunk the common misconception that Linux "does not play well with others." Specifically, we'll cover:

  • How to create a Novell Storage Services volume on an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server
  • How to migrate Novell Storage Services volumes to an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server
  • How to access data on an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server using the Common Internet File System (CIFS) and Samba
  • How to use the Novell Client to access Novell Storage Services volumes on Open Enterprise Server-Linux

> What You Should Know Before You Start
Every organization, no matter how small or complex, needs to manage files. So, whether your network spans multiple countries or just multiple cubicles, your files are the foundation of your business. Today's businesses can't really afford unreliable file service, particularly when the files are continually growing and requiring more and more storage space. Novell Storage Services provides a variety of features that meet these needs to provide a robust and reliable solution for your business on Linux and NetWare:

  • a journaling file system that lets you create bigger volumes that activate (mount) more quickly, store more data and resist corruption better than non-journaling file systems
  • encrypted volume support to meet the legal standard of making data inaccessible to software that circumvents normal access control, such as if the media were stolen
  • software RAID 0 (striping), RAID 1 (mirroring), RAID 5 (striping), RAID 10 (mirroring RAID 0 devices) and RAID 15 (mirroring RAID 5 devices)
  • multiple server activation prevention (MSAP) to help protect pools from being concurrently activated by multiple servers that don't share a cluster relationship
  • a Novell Storage Services volume in a pool of storage that spans multiple storage devices
  • up to 4 billion (10E9) files in a single directory
  • faster access to data, regardless of file size or volume size
  • lower memory requirements: 1 MB of RAM can activate a Novell Storage Services volume
  • directory space restrictions
  • user space restrictions
  • salvage support for deleted volumes and files
  • trustee rights management module that scales to large enterprises with thousands of users in the same file system, yet still maintains proper security and access for each user
  • file visibility: with Novell Storage Services a user is not permitted to even see subdirectories to which they don't have rights. Any other file system will show the directories but not the contents.

> Novell Storage Services and Enterprise Volume Management System on Novell Open Enterprise Server
The default volume manager in Open Enterprise Server-Linux is the Linux Volume Manager (LVM); however, to use Novell Storage Services on the same drive that contains your boot volume and system volume, that drive must be managed by Enterprise Volume Management System (EVMS). Unless you make your Linux swap and system volumes manageable by EVMS, you cannot create Novell Storage Services data volumes on that drive.

The simplest solution is to put your swap and system volumes on one device, and then use different devices for your Novell Storage Services volumes. In other words, you must install Linux with EVMS as the volume manager of the system hard drive in either of the following scenarios:

  1. Your system has a single hard drive and you want to use its free space for Novell Storage Services data volumes.
  2. Your system has multiple hard drives and you want to use free space for Novell Storage Services data volumes from any drive that contains the Linux boot, system or swap volumes.

> How to create a Novell Storage Services volume on Novell Open Enterprise Server
Novell Storage Services is not installed by default with Open Enterprise Server. It is recommended as a post-installation procedure, but you must plan for this service before installing Open Enterprise Server-Linux. If your system has a single hard drive, you must create an EVMS partition during the Open Enterprise Server-Linux installation as indicated above. If your system has more than a single hard drive, you must still have EVMS partitions before you can create Novell Storage Services volumes on an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server; however, with more than one hard drive, you can create EVMS partitions after installation on the other hard drives that don't contain the system volumes.

Given that you have EVMS partitions on which to create Novell Storage Services volumes, you install Novell Storage Services on Open Enterprise Server-Linux using the YaST utility by doing the following:

  1. From YaST, select System > Novell Storage Services (NSS). YaST displays a message indicating that Novell Storage Services is not installed.
  2. To install Novell Storage Services, select Continue; then insert the requested CD.

After YaST installs and configures the Novell Storage Services packages, you authenticate to the LDAP server so the Novell Storage Services Unique Admin object can be created in eDirectory.

Once the installation is complete, you no longer use YaST for Novell Storage Services tasks. You create and manage pools and volumes from iManager or by using the nssmu command line utility.

> Understanding NetWare-to-Linux Data Migration Issues
Before using the Server Consolidation Utility to copy data from NetWare servers to Open Enterprise Server-Linux servers, be aware of the following:

  • Open files cannot be copied. The Server Consolidation Utility cannot copy files that are open and currently in use.
  • Cluster failover stops file copy. If you run a server consolidation project involving a NetWare cluster and the cluster fails over during the consolidation, the file copy will stop. The consolidation project must be run again.
  • Use of SMS to copy data. The Server Consolidation Utility uses Storage Management Services (SMS) as its file copy engine to copy data from NetWare servers to Open Enterprise Server-Linux servers. Using SMS preserves as many of the NetWare trustee rights and file/directory attributes as possible.
  • New attrib command for Open Enterprise Server-Linux. If you copy files from a NetWare source server that has the Delete Inhibit attribute set, the files cannot be deleted from the destination Novell Storage Services volume on an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server using the standard Linux or Windows utilities; however, Novell has provided a new attrib command for Open Enterprise Server-Linux that lets you remove the Delete Inhibit attribute, as well as set or modify other supported NetWare attributes on Linux. For more information, enter attrib -h to view the online help.
  • Creation dates change from NetWare to Linux. After copying files from a NetWare source server to an Open Enterprise Server-Linux destination server, the creation dates for those files will change to the current date rather than the date the files were originally created.
  • Migrating Macintosh files from NetWare to Linux. If the Server Consolidation Utility encounters files with Macintosh resource forks, which are supported in early versions of the NetWare Core Protocol, the resource forks are not copied to the Linux server.
  • NFS Name Space is required when copying data from a Traditional File System (TFS) on NetWare to Novell Storage Services on Linux. You can transfer data from a traditional NetWare file system (non-Novell Storage Services) volume on NetWare to a Novell Storage Services volume on Open Enterprise Server-Linux. Transferring data from TFS requires that you first install NFS name space support on the traditional NetWare volume. Without the NFS name space loaded, the Server Consolidation Utility file copy fails and displays an error message indicating there is not enough disk space.
  • Disable the Server Consolidation Utility File and Folder Comparison. Novell recommends you don't enable the Compare Files and Folders verification when copying data from NetWare to Linux. If you enable this check, expect to see many errors reported in the log file because of the inherent differences in how Linux stores file system data.
  • Enable UTF-8 encoding on the NCP Client for the Server Consolidation Utility. You can use the Server Consolidation Utility to copy data from servers storing double-byte character set data (Japanese, Korean, and other non-ASCII characters) or extended ASCII character data (multinational characters). To copy data with non-ASCII or extended ASCII characters, you must enable UTF-8 support in the Novell Client 4.91 for Windows 2000/XP to prevent trustees and ownerships from being lost.
  • Understand the need for Linux-enabling users. When you use the Server Consolidation Utility to copy data from NetWare servers to Novell Storage Services volumes on an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server, it transfers the NetWare trustee rights and supported file and directory attributes along with the files; however, in order to preserve file ownerships, the users must be Linux-enabled, which is also known as LUM-enabled because the process involves the Linux User Management service in Open Enterprise Server.

To become Linux- or LUM-enabled, an eDirectory User object must be associated with an eDirectory Group object. The Group object must be associated with an eDirectory Linux Workstation object that represents the physical Linux workstation/server. The Group object is necessary because Novell Storage Services on Linux uses Virtual File Services (VFS), which requires both a User ID and a Group ID to authorize access.

  • Maintain file ownership information. To maintain file ownership information when copying data from NetWare volumes to Novell Storage Services volumes on Open Enterprise Server-Linux, Novell recommends you Linux-enable your users with LUM before copying their data. If you Linux-enable users after their data has been copied to an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server, the file ownerships might not be reestablished immediately on the destination Novell Storage Services volume.

> Starting the Consolidation Utility
When the Server Consolidation and Migration Utility has initialized and asked you some basic questions about your project, the Project Window appears and you can select which volumes and directories to copy and which printer objects to move. The Project Window is divided into two panes that show the source and destination trees that you are working in. (See Figure 1.)

In the Project Window, drag objects from the left pane and drop them into the right pane. Select the volumes and directories to copy to different servers (and Printer Agents to move to different Print Managers). You can also create new eDirectory containers or file system folders by right-clicking on an existing container or folder and selecting New Container or New Folder from the pop-up menu.

Note that creating containers and folders and dragging and dropping objects in the Project Window does not immediately perform the action. It only creates a preview of where the files and objects will reside. The actions are completed only after the verification process is complete and the copy process begins.

> Performing Pre-Copy Verifications
After you have completed the modeling tasks necessary for your consolidation project, select Project > Verify and Copy Data from the menu or click Do the Consolidation on the button bar. The pre-copy verification phase includes the following:

  • verification initialization
  • duplicate file resolution
  • synchronize files and folders
  • file comparison
  • file date filters
  • excluded file extensions
  • check for trustees and ownership
  • password verification
  • check for sufficient disk space and disable login
  • verification wizard
  • resolve pre-copy verification errors if necessary

> Resolving Pre-Copy Verification Errors
If it discovers errors in the verification process, you'll see them in the Error Resolution dialog box. Errors could include name conflicts, insufficient rights, required name spaces not loaded and insufficient disk space. Errors found during the verification process are classified in two ways:

  • Critical errors must be resolved before files can be copied
  • Warnings should be resolved but might not affect the copy process.

A description of the error and a possible resolution appears in the Information text box. If it doesn't list a resolution, you can find more information in the Novell Error Code online documentation. In addition to critical errors and warnings, the Error Resolution dialog box might display information about the decisions you made in the Project Window.

> Running the Consolidation
After resolving pre-copy verification errors, start the Novell Server Consolidation Utility. During the copy process, new folders and objects are created, files are copied and Printer Agents are moved to their destinations.

You can view the error and success logs of any completed project from the Project Window by opening the project file and selecting View > Error Log or View > Success Log. If you interrupt the copy process before it is completed, all objects, directories and files already copied to the destination server will remain there unless you manually delete them.

> Accessing Data on Novell Open Enterprise Server
As a network engineer, providing access to network file systems is one of your top priorities. With NetWare servers, access from Windows clients to NetWare servers is accomplished primarily through the NetWare Core Protocol.

Linux servers and workstations provide file access protocols that you might not have worked with in the past. Or, if you have worked with them, Novell Open Enterprise Server provides file access deployment options you didn't have before.

Samba, Server Message Block and Common Internet File System

Novell Open Enterprise Server fully supports the Samba file access protocol. By default, Novell Storage Services volumes hosted by an Open Enterprise Server-NetWare server can be accessed from a Samba client. Open Enterprise Server-Linux servers natively support both Samba server and Samba client functionality. Samba lets Open Enterprise Server servers function in the following roles:

  • Open Enterprise Server-Linux as a file server for Windows clients. A Samba share on a Linux server looks the same to a Windows client as a CIFS share on a Windows server. Any CIFS/SMB-compatible client can attach to a Samba share on an Open Enterprise Server-Linux server.

  • Open Enterprise Server-Linux as a Windows client. A Samba client on a Linux desktop attaches natively to Windows file and print services. No special configuration is necessary. The Samba client does not know whether the CIFS- or SMB-based services originate from a Windows server or a Linux server.

  • Open Enterprise Server-NetWare as a file server for CIFS and SMB clients. Novell Storage Services volumes on Open Enterprise Server-NetWare servers are configured as CIFS shares and support the SMB protocol by default. This means that eDirectory users with the correct file system rights can access a Novell Storage Services volume from a Windows or a Linux desktop using any CIFS/SMB-compatible client.

> How to Prepare Users to Access CIFS or Samba Shares with Novell Open Enterprise Server
You must complete the following tasks before users can access a CIFS or Samba share on an Open Enterprise Server server:

  • Samba-enable users
  • assign a universal password
  • assign eDirectory object rights
  • assign file system rights
  • configure CIFS contexts

For more information on performing these tasks see the Samba Administration Guide for Open Enterprise Server-Linux (samba_admin.pdf) and the Novell Open Enterprise Server Planning and Implementation Guide (implgde.pdf). Both of these are available from the Novell Documentation Web site.

> Where Do I Go Now?
So, now you know a bit more about using Novell Storage Services with Novell Open Enterprise Server on Linux. This article has helped shed some light onto how to provide access to those all-important files on your network and how Novell Open Enterprise Server on Linux can be just as efficient and user-friendly as your comfortable NetWare installation. The next article in this series will take you through the File and Print features of Novell Open Enterprise Server on Linux, including how to install iPrint and iFolder. Stay tuned... red N

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