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Letting Users Browse their Files using NetStorage

Novell Cool Solutions: Tip
By Cliff Petersohn

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Posted: 13 Jul 2004
 

PROBLEM: NetStorage is a great way to expose file systems to remote users via a browser. But the Explorerish interface does not allow a user to browse or dynamically map to folders; by default only applicable drive mappings from a login script as described in TID 10068983 are available. This was a problem inasmuch as there is no reliable way to predict which of many (in our case project data volume(s) scattered across a WAN) a user may need access to during a given NetStorage session.

SOLUTION: This limitation can be worked around with some nontrivial participation from users. NetStorage supports a form of the login script INCLUDE statement, so we incorporate an INCLUDE statement in each user's login script for a text file in their %HOME_DIRECTORY. Unfortunately, NetStorage INCLUDE does not appear to support eDirectory attributes (such as %HOME_DIRECTORY- wink), so this must be done for each user (versus at the container above) with the exact path entered literally for each user's home directory.

After that, a user can login to NetStorage remotely, download the INCLUDEd file from their HOME@ folder, and make changes to include whichever additional drive mappings they need at the time. Then the user must restore (upload) this file, and log out of NetStorage. Upon logging in again- voila.

Example

Insert something like the following in the login script:

 IF <WEBACCESS> ="1"
    INCLUDE \\SERVER\VOLUME\FOLDER\...\NSLogin.txt 
  END

The file NSLogin.txt should be something like this:

;NAME
;      NSLogin.txt
;
;SYNOPSIS
;      Default end user NetStorage login script.
;
;DESCRIPTION
;      Conditionally included in user login script processing.
;
;RETURN VALUE
;      NONE
;
;NOTES
;      Valid commands in this script are of the form:
;        MAP drive_letter path  Example MAP NEXT \\SERVER\VOLUME\FOLDER 
;          where
;            drive_letter is the word NEXT (for arbitrary next available letter assignment)        
;							Example NEXT
;                         is a specific letter followed by a colon and an equals sign. 
;						Example G:=
;            path         is a fully qualified server, volume, and folder
;
;        ; Any line beginning with a semicolon is considered a comment and ignored
;
;SEE ALSO
;  http://support.novell.com/cgi-bin/search/searchtid.cgi?/10068983.htm 
;
MAP NEXT \\SERVER\VOLUME\Folder\Subfolder 

If you have any questions you may contact Cliff at cpetersohn@BSCGroup.com


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