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Troubleshooting IP Problems

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Caterina Luppi

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Posted: 15 Mar 2002

Current version: Novell BorderManager 3.6

Here is one of the magic tricks of resolving IP problems on NetWare. Renaming NETINFO.CFG and TCPIP.CFG, then re-entering the networking config in INETCFG often fixes inexplicable communications problems. It really seems to be magic, too -- if you could compare the old .CFG files and the new ones, they'd be identical, byte for byte.

This trick has ended nightmares for power users on several occasions, and Caterina has laid it out nicely for us. She is taking a very conservative approach (i.e. she doesn't want to take any risks), so she tells the user to disable the BM services before doing this. It is not strictly necessary, but it might prevent a few problems.

If you are experiencing strange communication problems like:

  • NAT stops working suddenly
  • Routing stops working
  • The packet filters start discarding packets that should be allowed

and you are sure that you are running the latest service packs, you are probably the victim of a corruption of your internetworking configuration.

This is the solution for the problem. It sounds more complex and painful than it actually is, provided that you work systematically. During this operation, the access to the internet will not work.

  1. In Autoexec.ncf comment the lines that load the BorderManager services.
  2. Reboot the server.
  3. Load inetcfg, and write down:
    • The details of your LAN cards (name, driver, slot, duplex mode, speed)
    • The details of your bindings (IP address, network mask, RIP settings)
    • Static NAT table, if you have any
  4. Make sure that NAT is disabled for the IP bindings (if you had it enabled, disable it).
  5. In the protocols section, make sure that filtering for IPX and IP is DISABLED (you might not have IPX filtering at all, depending on your configuration).
  6. Rename the files sys:\etc\netinfo.cfg and sys:\etc\tcpip.cfg.
  7. Delete the file sys:\etc\netingo.chk
  8. Load inetcfg and reconfigure the LAN interfaces, the bindings and NAT, according to your notes. It is VERY important that you use the same interface names as in the previous configuration, otherwise your packet filters will fail.
    Note that the routing tables and the DNS information will not be lost.
  9. Reinitialize system and make sure you can ping the Internet and all segments in your private LAN. Check that a workstation in your LAN can ping an Internet IP address.
  10. If this works, load inetcfg, and in the protocol section enable filtering as was before.
  11. Reinitialize system to activate the changes.
  12. Edit the autoexec.ncf and remove the comment from the lines loading the BorderManager services.
  13. At this point, you can either down and restart the server or load the BorderManager services manually.

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