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Configuring iManager to Manage SLP objects

Novell Cool Solutions: AppNote
By Chuck Flood

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Posted: 9 Nov 2005
 

Overview

When Novell introduced NetWare 5, a new technology was utilized to allow the dynamic searching of resources in an IP network. This technology is SLP (Service Location Protocol) and is widely used in almost all NetWare networks. The original tool used to manage SLP was NWAdmin. Also available is a snap-in for ConsoleOne that enables administrators to manage SLP. However, a plug-in to manage SLP using iManager is not currently available.

The objective of this AppNote is to provide steps and information needed so that iManager can be used to manage SLP objects in the tree. iManager is very powerful - it enables an administrator to manage any object class or attribute (including AUX class) in the tree without having to deal with any complex programming. This is accomplished through the iManager Plug-in studio. This document provides detailed steps on how to use the iManager Plug-in Studio to create a number of custom tasks (or plug-ins). The steps and screen shots provided are based on iManager version 2.5.

Getting Started

To begin, log into iManager with an admin user account that has been configured with Collection Owner Status.

Creating the iManager Role and Plug-ins

The following steps describe how to create an iManager role for SLP and then how to create the 7 custom plug-ins (tasks) needed.

Step 1: Create a Role called SLP to store the custom Tasks in

  1. At the top of the iManager screen select Configure (Icon of person sitting at a desk).
  2. Expand Role Based Services on the left and select RBS Configuration. There should be at least one 2.x collection listed.
  3. Either click on the collection name or select the check box and click Edit. This brings up the list of Roles assigned to this collection.
  4. Select New and then iManager Role.
  5. Under Role Name, enter SLP. Leave the collection name as is and put in a description of this Role if desired.
  6. Click Next to bring up a list of available Tasks to assign to this Role. Leave this empty as we will be creating Tasks and adding them to this Role later.
  7. Click Next. The next steps prompts to assign categories. Do not select anything here either.
  8. Click Next.
    The next step is to assign users to this new Role.
  9. Assign the Admin user or user used to log into iManager with and select an administrative scope. (In most cases the scope would be the entire tree).
  10. Click Add and the user should be in the list below.
  11. Select Next and then Finish. The SLP role should be in the list of Roles for this collection.

Step 2: Create custom Plug-ins (or Tasks) using the Plug-in Studio

To be able to fully manage (create, delete, modify) all the SLP-related attributes, you need to create seven custom tasks and assign each of these tasks to the SLP Role created above. When configuring SLP, there are only 3 object types used: NCP server, SLPDA Server, and SLP Scope Unit.

Each of these objects has attributes that point them to each other. The NCP server object points to the SLPDA server object. The SLPDA server object has an attribute that points back to the NCP server object. The SLPDA server object points to the SLP scope unit object, and the SLP scope unit object has an attribute that points back to the SLP server object. Creating these custom plug-ins allows an administrator to configure these attributes.

Step 3: Plug-in - Create SLPDA server object

  1. In the iManager Configure window expand Role Based Services and select Plug-in Studio.
  2. In the right-hand pane click New.
  3. For the available class, select SLP Directory Agent. Leave the target device set to Default and plug-in type as Task for Create, as shown below.
  4. Click Next.

Figure 1: Step 1 of creating a custom task

The Plug-in Studio window appears with four different panes:

  • Plug-in fields - a list of the attributes assigned to this plug-in
  • Attributes - the list of attributes available to be assigned to this custom task, based on the Class selected in the previous step
  • Plug-in Properties - where the Plug-in (or task) name is assigned, along with what Roles to assign this to.
  • Controls
  • For each of the seven custom tasks being created, you need to add a number of attributes to them. To do this,
    1. Find the attribute under the attribute list and double-click it. It will then show up in the plug-in field.
    2. In the Plug-in Properties field, give the plug-in a name, assign an RBS collection, and have the plug-in assigned to the SLP role. Use Figure 2 as a guide to assign the exact attributes and properties information as shown.
    3. When you're finished adding the information, click Install.

    Figure 2: Plug-in to create SLPDA objects

    4. Select Plug-in Studio again, and the new plug-in should be listed as shown in figure 3.

    Figure 3: Plug-in Studio with one custom Plug-in created

    Step 4: Plug-in - Modify SLPDA

    1. From within the Plug-in Studio click New.
    2. For available class select SLP Directory Agent and for Plug-in type select Task for Modify.
    3. Click Next.
    4. Using Figure 4 as a guide, select the exact attributes shown for the Plug-in and enter the Plug-in properties.
    5. From the attributes list select all the attributes shown in the Plug-in Fields window, along with the plug-in properties information.
    6. Click Install.

    Figure 4: Plug-in to modify SLPDA attributes

    Step 5: Plug-in - Delete SLPDA

    1. From within the Plug-in Studio click New.
    2. For available class select SLP Directory Agent, and for Plug-in type select Task for Delete.
    3. Click Next. The only items needed for configuration of a delete task is task name, collection, and role. Figure 5 shows an example of what to enter.

    Figure 5: Delete SLPDA Plug-in

    Step 6: Plug-in - Create SLP Scope Unit

    1. From within the Plug-in Studio click New.
    2. For available class select SLP Scope Unit, and for Plug-in type select Task for Create.
    3. Click Next.
    4. Using Figure 6 as a guide, select the attributes for the Plug-in and enter the Plug-in properties.
    5. From the attributes list select all the attributes shown in the Plug-in Fields window, along with the plug-in properties information.
    6. Click Install.

    Figure 6: Create SLP Scope Unit

    Step 7: Plug-in 5: Modify SLP Scope Unit

    1. From within the Plug-in Studio click New.
    2. For available class select SLP Scope Unit, and for Plug-in type select Task for Modify.
    3. Click Next.
    4. Using Figure 7 as a guide, select the attributes for the Plug-in and enter the Plug-in properties.
    5. From the attributes list select all the attributes shown in the Plug-in Fields window along with the plug-in properties information.
    6. Click Install.

    Figure 7: Plug-in to Modify SLP Scope Unit

    Step 8: Plug-in - Delete SLP Scope Unit

    1. From within the Plug-in Studio select New.
    2. For available class select SLP Scope Unit, and for Plug-in type select Task for Delete.
    3. Click Next. The only items needed for configuration of a delete task is task name, collection, and role. Figure 8 shows an example of what to enter.

    Figure 8: Plug-in to delete SLP scope unit.

    Step 9: Plug-in - Modify NCP Server Object

    1. From within the Plug-in Studio click New.
    2. For available class select NCP Server, and for Plug-in type select Task for Modify.
    3. Click Next.
    4. Use Figure 9 as a guide to select the attributes for the Plug-in and enter the Plug-in properties. From the attributes list the only attribute needed is SLP Directory Agent DN.
    5. Add the values in plug-in properties section as shown.
    6. Click Install.

    Figure 9: Modify NCP Server object

    At this point all of the required tasks or plug-ins are created. Selecting the Plug-in Studio main page should now show a total of seven plug-ins created, as seen in Figure 10.

    Figure 10: Complete list of plug-ins created

    Managing SLP Objects Using the Plug-ins Created

    1. From the iManager tool bar select Roles and Tasks.
    2. Expand the SLP role. If the plug-ins where properly assigned to the SLP role there should be 7 tasks displayed. These are the same 7 as shown in Figure 10 above.

    If SLP has already been configured in the tree ,then the SLP Modify tasks can be used to manage the SLPDA objects and Scope Unit objects. If SLP has not been configured, or if SLP needs to be configured from scratch, very specific steps need to be followed when using these iManager tasks. A summary of these steps is shown below and then following are the details for each step.

    1. Create the SLP Scope Unit object.
    2. Create the SLPDA object.
    3. Modify the NCP Server object running SLPDA.NLM
    4. Modify the Scope Unit Back link and Equivalent to me attributes.

    Step 10: Create the SLP Scope Unit

    1. Select the Create SLP Scope Unit task and configure the following attributes:

    • SU - the Scope Unit name. The Scope Unit object is a container object, so this will be the container where all the SLP services are stored in the directory.
    • Context - where to place the Scope Unit container.
    • Equivalent to Me - name of the NCP server object that will be running SLPDA.NLM, along with the SLPDA server object servicing this scope. Browse to the NCP server object and select it. The SLPDA server object has not been created yet so this will be done in a later step.
    • SLP Scope Name - name of the scope, which is the actual name used when configuring servers to register with this scope or configuring clients to access the scope. Do not confuse the scope name with the scope unit name. Many customers make these the same (which is a best practice) but they do not have to be the same.
    • SLP SU Back Link - name of the SLPDA object configured to support this scope. The SLPDA object has not been created yet so leave this blank for now. It will be configured in another step.

    2. Click OK to create the object.

    Step 11: Create SLPDA server object

    1. Select the Create SLPDA task and configure the following attributes:

  • Common name - the name of the SLPDA server object.
  • Context - the context of where to put the SLPDA server object. This should be the same context as where the NCP server object that will be running SLPDA.NLM.
  • Equivalent to me - the name of the NCP server object running SLPDA.NLM
  • SLP DA Back Link - the attribute that points to the server where SLPDA.NLM will be running. Make this value the NCP server object.
  • SLP Cache Limit - the default value of 524,288.
  • SLP Start Purge Hour - the default value of 2.
  • 2. Click OK to create the object.

    Step 12: Configure the NCP server object

    1. Select the Modify NCP Server task.
    2. Browse for the NCP server object and click Next.
    3. Configure the SLP Directory Agent DN attribute. This attribute points the NCP server object to the SLPDA server object. When SLPDA.NLM loads it will query the NCP server object for this attribute to determine what is the name of the SLPDA server object. It will then read the SLPDA server object to determine what scopes are configured for this DA.
    4. Browse for the created SLPDA server object and select it.

    Step 13: Finish up

    The last step is to point the SLP scope unit back to the SLPDA server object and complete configuration of the Equivalent to Me attribute.

    1. Select the task for Modify SLP scope unit.
    2. Select the scope unit created above.
    3. For the attribute SLP SU Back Link, browse or select the SLPDA server object created earlier.
    4. Modify the Equivalent to Me attribute and add the SLPDA server object to this attribute.
    5. Click Apply.

    Troubleshooting

    At this point SLP is configured, and loading SLPDA.NLM should result in SLPDA being able to load properly. If there are problems loading SLPDA, then at the server enter SET SLP DEBUG = 127 and load SLPDA.NLM again. In the SLP debug screen there should be messages pointing to what the issue is. Most of the time, if SLPDA does not load it is because an attribute is not properly configured or linked on the NCP server object, the SLPDA server object, or the SLP Scope Unit object. Check the SLP back link objects and make sure they point to the correct object.


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