About Mobile iManager
Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Aaron Burgemeister
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Posted: 22 Jun 2005
Simply put, Mobile iManager 2.5 is great. It runs on Linux or Windows and uses native NCP calls for the majority of operations, just like the client and ConsoleOne, though some operations use LDAP. So, to make Mobile iManager work you just need a regular server with LDAP and NCP responding to requests (which any eDirectory server that is patched to date will automatically have). Because it is mobile and uses less of the server, it can be used to troubleshoot a server when one of iManager 2.0.2's requirements is broken (Tomcat, Apache, etc), as long as eDirectory and LDAP work for the required operations.
Mobile iManager can be transferred from one computer to another as simply as making a tar file of the directory where it lives and sending that tar to the other computer. A potential practical use with this new capability is sharing different setups of Mobile iManager with other administrators with applications such as ZENworks. If you have a group of administrators who need to have the plug-ins for taking care of DHCP/DNS, then you could send a customized version of Mobile iManager to them designed to do just that. More plug-ins could be added in the future. It may be possible to even get a snAppShot of changes made by different plug-ins, so you could distribute small changes to different admins in a granular fashion based on what they should be able to do. (Note that this is untested, but it should work).
Also note that there may be issues using plug-ins with Mobile iManager. FOr example, to use BordeManager plug-ins in Windows you would also need Java support.
Mobile iManager 2.5, because it does not require any special services on the eDirectory server, will not damage your server's installation in any way, shape, or form. Also, during a period of time where a customer has 2.0.2 and is comfortable with that, the 2.5 Mobile can be used to help bridge the transition to 2.5 because you don't need to remove 2.0.2 from a server to use 2.5 Mobile.
Summary: Mobile iManager 2.5 is a good product. It doesn't break servers or workstations; installation is as simple as extracting a zip or tar file, depending on the platform, and running the executable; and it requires only NICI on the workstation (and probably Java Runtime Environment (JRE) as well) to work properly. Also, using Mobile iManager eliminates the need for you to install Apache, Tomcat, or practically anything else.
For Mobile iManager on Windows prerequisites and installation instructions, see the Novell iManager 2.5 Installation Guide.
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