It seems strange that having bought Excelan Inc, Novell Inc should turn to a third party to provide enhanced TCP/IP support for NetWare 3.11 and 2, but that is what it has done. It has given its blessing to Firefox Ltd, the Coleshill, West Midlands software company, which has developed the necessary value-added processes and […]
It seems strange that having bought Excelan Inc, Novell Inc should turn to a third party to provide enhanced TCP/IP support for NetWare 3.11 and 2, but that is what it has done. It has given its blessing to Firefox Ltd, the Coleshill, West Midlands software company, which has developed the necessary value-added processes and NetWare Loadable Modules to do the job. Although NetWare 3.11 comes with built-in TCP/IP support, the Firefox approach is different enough for the company to believe that it has a large potential market. The difference lies in the fact that NetWare clients do not have to run TCP/IP protocol stacks themselves – they use the ordinary NetWare protocols. Instead, it is the server-based Firefox software, dubbed Novix, which handles the intricacies of maintaining TCP/IP sessions between the server and the host. The software uses the same approach which Firefox took with its Novos OSI software for NetWare and is clever enough to pass Novell user names and so on to the Unix host during remote log-ins and assign each NetWare client its own unique IP address. This should prove a boon to Unix administrators who will be able to identify remote users properly, instead of receiving generic IDs. The fact that the client is not running TCP/IP makes the package unsuitable for Unix Wizards that want to get to the command line. Instead the package is aimed at users that need to run Unix-based applications but don’t care about the operating system. The network manager configures the Novix NetWare Loadable Module or value-added process to advertise the names of the applications to the NetWare clients’ shell. On top of this, a variety of specialised redirectors can be installed so, the company claims, that communications packages that address the communications port using the MS-DOS Int14 interrupt or a number of other methods should automatically get a menu of applications sitting on the Unix box. Other benefits include the ability to re-direct print output from the host to NetWare Queues. The server and MS-DOS re-directors cost UKP700 to UKP5,000 depending on the version of NetWare and the number of sessions supported. For NetWare 2.15 and 2.2 this looks to be it as far as Unix support is concerned: Novell insiders say there is no apparent development that would lead to a comparable product. Presumably its own Unix gurus have bigger fish to fry.