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Quoi de Neuf: What's New in NetWare 5?

Articles and Tips: article

Mark McKell
Editorial Intern
Developer Information

01 Jul 1998

Looks at the new and enhanced features of NetWare 5 and what these features mean for you. Includes information on kernel enhancements, the new GUI Console (ConsoleOne), and NDS enhancements including LDAP and pure TCP/IP support.


With the release of NetWare 4, many new features were added to the NetWare 3.x operating system. If the differences between these two versions of NetWare seemed significant, you probably won't recognize Novell's newest operating system, NetWare 5. This release has more changes than all the previous versions of NetWare. This article looks at the new and enhanced features of NetWare 5 and what these features mean for you.

Operating System

The following sections describe the changes made to the operating system in NetWare 5, including kernel enhancements and the GUI console.

NetWare 5 Kernel

A kernel is the basis or core of an operating system. The NetWare 5 kernel improves performance, provides new services, and offers support for Java applications. The NetWare 5 operating system kernel adds the following functions:

Multi-Processor Support. The NetWare Multi-Processor Kernel (MPK) is both a uni-processor kernel and a multiprocessor kernel. The same kernel can run on machines containing a single processor and on machines containing multiple processors. The NetWare MPK can support a machine with as many as 32 processors.

Memory Protection. Memory protection allows applications to run in a protected mode and prevents ill-behaved applications from crashing the server. NetWare provides memory protection support for Java applications.

Virtual Memory. Virtual memory is a memory management scheme that allows you to execute programs that require more memory than is physically available on the server. Virtual memory is transparent to applications that request memory.

Novell Directory Services (NDS)

NetWare 5 ships with a new version of Novell Directory Services (NDS) that offers increased flexibility and security in managing and administering the network, saving businesses considerable time and money. The enhanced version of NDS in NetWare 5 includes the following:

Transitive Synchronization

With NetWare 5, server replication no longer happens within a replica ring or list as it has in the past. Transitive Synchronization works through a migration agent server that checks the replica list and each target server's ReplicaUpto vector. If the source server's ReplicaUpto vector is more recent than a target server's vector, the source server does not need to synchronize with that target server. This procedure reduces synchronization traffic, freeing up bandwidth and uses both IPX and IP protocols.

Role-based Management

Role-based management capabilities in NetWare 5 enables network managers to assign specific network administration tasks to individuals. For instance, the responsibility of assigning and administering passwords can be delegated to the first-level help desk staff member, providing a solution that frees up a more costly administrator's time. This efficient method of managing the network provides an additional layer of administrative flexibility and security.

Catalog Services

The NetWare 5 catalog services and simplified login simplify the creation of NDS-enabled applications, improve directory access performance, and allow users to log on from any computer in any location without requiring directory knowledge. Directory information stored in catalog or index format is easily customized for searching, sorting and reporting purposes. Distribution and replication of these indexes allows administrators to quickly access a "snap shot" of the complete network directory as opposed to performing a query across the entire network. NetWare 5 includes new "contextless login" capabilities that leverage the NDS catalog, allowing users to authenticate from any point on the network simply by typing their login name and password, removing the need to know the location of their user object in the NDS tree.


NetWare 5 supports Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) version 3, an industry-standard protocol that allows users to easily access X.500-based directories such as NDS. LDAP Services for NDS is a server-based interface between NDS and LDAP-compliant applications running optionally under Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). In NetWare 5, the performance of LDAP access to NDS has also been significantly enhanced, allowing unlimited scalability through NDS's advanced replication and management of back-end directory functions.

NDS Manager

NetWare 5 will offer NDS Manager as an NWAdmin snap-in and as a standalone utility. NDS Manager runs the same as it did in NetWare 4.11, but with two key enhancements: 32-bit code-in place of 16-bit code-for faster performance, and Schema Manager snap-in is included with the software rather than being offered as a download add-on.

WAN Traffic Manager (WTM)

WAN Traffic Manager (WTM) is a policy-based tool for managing the cost and congestion of WAN traffic. Its clients (such as NDS) request a policy decision before initiating WAN traffic. WTM, as a policy evaluator, checks administrator-supplied policies and attempts to match input criteria to one of them. If matched, it runs the rest of the policy to see whether to allow the WAN traffic to proceed or be delayed. WTM is a valuable tool for networks that have significant congestion on their WAN links (for example, with ISDN or slow dial-up links), allowing administrators to control and manage bandwidth use and congestion.


DSDIAG is a new utility in NetWare 5 that offers many convenient options in diagnosing and troubleshooting NDS errors. It supports multiple trees, identities, and naming conventions. It also allows you to export data into several formats for ease of viewing.


The following is a list of new or enhanced services of NetWare 5.

Pure IP

The most apparent difference between NetWare 5 and other versions of NetWare is support for pure TCP/IP-pure in the sense that it doesn't require an IPX-based encapsulation. Although NetWare 5 maintains support for IPX/SPX protocols, you now have the option of implementing a pure TCP/IP environment or using IPX/SPX alone or as part of a mixed TCP/IP and IPX/SPX environment. This helps customers who require IP by eliminating multiple protocols and freeing up valuable network bandwidth.

Novell Storage Service

Novell Storage Service (NSS) is the new NetWare 5 file system designed to mount large server volumes in seconds, virtually eliminating limits on the number or size of files that can be stored in volumes and directories. NSS remains compatible with NetWare's traditional file system.

NSS is a file storage and retrieval engine which runs on the server. It reduces the time NetWare requires to mount and repair volumes (for example, a three terabyte volume was crashed and recovered in 10 seconds at COMDEX/Fall `97). In addition, NSS permits a virtually unlimited number of files to exist in directories and volumes, with almost no restriction on size. You can use NSS to quickly open and update large files, such as those found in databases. To use NSS, simply load the NSS series of NLMs on a NetWare 5 server.

Note: NSS cannot be used with the SYS volume. In addition, NSS cannot be used on servers running older versions of NetWare; however, use of NSS is optional.

Novell Distributed Printing Service (NDPS)

NDPS offers important improvements in printer configuration and administration over the Novell legacy queue-based print service architecture. NDPS automates and eases most aspects of network-based printing by providing the following services:

  • Tight integration with NDS

  • Simplified and centralized administration of all printing resources through NWAdmin

  • Automatic printer driver download and installation

  • Bi-directional feedback and control of printers and print jobs

  • Support for existing printers and printing technologies (full backward compatibility)

  • New printer and job configuration options for specific printers

  • New print job scheduling options (such as scheduling jobs according to time of day or job size)

Storage Management Services (SMS)

Novell Storage Management Services (SMS) lets you back up, restore, and verify data stored on the network and on network clients. NetWare 5 SMS includes Enhanced SBACKUP ensuring regular and complete back ups of all the data on your network, including the NDS database, bindery data, GroupWise data, and client and server file systems.

ZENworks Workstation Management

NetWare 5 ships with ZENworks Starter Pack-which includes Novell Application Launcher (NAL) and Workstation Manager-as part of the NetWare 5 installation. ZENworks is a bundle of management utilities that assist you in managing individual workstations in an enterprise.

The components of ZENworks allow administrators to solve a user's workstation problems without visiting the user's workstation. By adding workstation objects and workstation group objects to the NDS tree, administrators can manage the desktop configuration, distribute applications, and perform maintenance on the workstation through NDS.

With ZENworks installed, workstations are registered with NDS each time a user logs in to the network. Registration enables administrators to look at a workstation object's details and centrally manage workstations through NDS.

Features Available in the Full ZENworks Product

While NetWare 5 ships with ZENworks Starter Pack, it does not come with full ZENworks functionality, for this you will need to purchase the full-featured product (for more information about ZENworks, visit You must install ZENworks and the Novell Client provided on the ZENworks CD to take advantage of the following features:

The Help Requester. This application lets users send a message about a workstation problem to the administrator or Help Desk. The message automatically includes the workstation object's details stored in NDS. You can use the message and the workstation object in NWAdmin to solve the problem. This saves time and effort, especially when problem workstations are located on a WAN.

Workstation Inventory. ZENworks allows you to easily inventory and track all the configuration data for Windows workstations on the network.

Remote Control of Workstations. By enabling remote control access on the network's workstations, you can connect to a workstation remotely and navigate the desktop to troubleshoot workstation problems without having to visit the workstation.


Cryptographic services. NetWare 5 includes cryptographic services that are code-named Novell International Cryptographic Infrastructure (NICI). NICI allows developers to use the Controlled Cryptography Service (CCS) API to integrate cryptographic schemes with their applications. NICI also allows developers to write a single application that can be used in several countries, regardless of the differences in countries' cryptographic laws. For example, a developer could write a single application that uses 128-bit cryptographic keys when used within the United States and 40-bit cryptographic keys when used within countries that allow only keys of that length.

Secure Authentication Services (SAS). NetWare 5 includes SAS, an infrastructure for supporting both existing and emerging authentication mechanisms, such as biometric and token-authentication systems. Through SAS, NetWare 5 also supports SSL version 3. Developers can use the SAS API to write applications that can establish encrypted SSL connections. (Developers can then use NICI to ensure that these SSL connections conform to the laws of each country in which the applications are used.)

Public Key Infrastructure Services (PKIS). NetWare 5 includes PKIS, which supports public-key cryptography and digital certificates in a NetWare 5 environment. (Digital certificates provide a method for checking the authenticity of keys used in a public-key cryptographic session.) In NetWare 5, PKIS allows you either to act as your own certificate authority or to use the services of third-party certificate authorities. Through PKIS, you can generate and sign various types of digital certificates and store and manage these certificates within NDS.

Auditing Services. NetWare 5 includes auditing services, which allow administrators to monitor users' access to your company's network and to record this monitoring information in audit log files. You can create NDS objects to represent audit log files, and you can then manage these objects just as you manage other objects in the NDS tree. You can also grant rights to the NDS objects representing audit log files, just as you grant rights to other objects in the NDS tree. As a result, you can assign administrators to view and manage audit log files.

Novell Installation Service and NetWare Licensing Services

Novell Installation Service (NIS) and Novell Licensing Services (NLS) simplify installation and licensing of new Novell products. Each works on the server to reduce the time and effort you must spend on installing and licensing. Common utilities and interfaces now standardize each of these tasks.

NIS. NIS provides a common utility to install all future NetWare products, ensures a consistent, efficient installation interface, and integrates GUI server technology to facilitate the installation process.

NLS. NLS provides a single utility you can use to license all future NetWare products, ensures consistent, efficient, and rapid licensing for NetWare products, and permits licensing for all products conforming to NLS requirements.


NetWare 5 ships with the Novell Internet Access Server (NIAS) 4.1. NIAS provides routing between local and remote LANs, remote access to all company network resources (including E-mail and Internet access) through a modem or other connection, and remote service management of all connectivity services and servers from your workstation.

Service Location Protocol

Service Location Protocol (SLP) provides automatic resource discovery and registration over TCP/IP connections. Network resources, such as servers and printers use SLP. SLP is more efficient than Service Advertisement Protocol (SAP) because it creates less ongoing network traffic than SAP. In addition, SLP allows network resources to carry extended description attributes. For example, a printer could be categorized as a "PostScript printer loaded with legal sized paper used by Consulting."


Domain Name Servers (DNS) converts domain names (such as to numerical IP addresses (such as NetWare 5 integrates DNS with NDS. With NDS integration, each user can automatically be assigned an appropriate DNS server upon login. For example, a mobile user in a distant location might be assigned a DNS server with a faster response time than a desktop user in a local office.

Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) provides unique IP addresses upon request to users and network devices. NetWare 5 uses NDS to help automate DHCP services, this means you can store IP address in NDS. When the user logs in to the network, DHCP consults NDS and provides an appropriate IP address to that user. DHCP eliminates the older methods of manually tracking and assigning IP addresses and NDS ensures that DHCP provides managed IP addresses throughout the enterprise.


NetWare 5 makes installing or upgrading your networks easy with the install/upgrade options, allowing you to chose which option best reflects your organization's network.

Upgrade Wizard (Gateway)

Novell recommends that you use the following tools to help you upgrade to NetWare 5:

Install. This utility is used to upgrade existing NetWare servers to NetWare 5 (in-place upgrade) as well as to install NetWare 5 on a new server (across-the-wire upgrade).

Novell Upgrade Wizard. This utility moves the NetWare 3 source server's bindery (including print information) and file system to a NetWare 5 server. The wizard interface ensures ease-of-use for across-the-wire upgrades. The wizard can also detect potential conflicts and provide options to resolve them before the upgrade begins.

REXXWARE Migration Toolkit (RMT). This utility moves files and network bindery information from NetWare 3 source servers to NetWare 5 destination servers. RMT includes capabilities designed specifically for enhanced performance and customization during the upgrade.

Automatic Client Update. This utility is used to upgrade NetWare 3 clients to NetWare 5 clients automatically from a central location. The Automatic Client Update(ACU) utility ships with NetWare 5.


NetWare 5 caters to network developers by providing the world's fastest Java Virtual Machine (JVM) for running server-based Java applications and services. Listed here are several additional enhancements made to the NetWare 5 system.

Java Support in NetWare 5

NetWare 5 supports Java applications running on the server. This allows a wide range of Java-developed applications to serve your network and users. Java support on NetWare 5 allows you to run Java applets on the server console, display Java applications in X-Windows-style formats-with full mouse and graphic support, and run multiple Java applications on the server while the server performs other tasks.

Java NetWare Loadable Module (NLM)

Java support in NetWare 5 is provided by JAVA.NLM. This NLM starts the Java engine, which enables Java applications to run. You can load Java support by calling JAVA.NLM at the server console prompt, and you can run Java applications using the APPLET console command.


NetWare 5 scripting and component services offer you choice, compatibility, and speed. NetWare 5 supports the major scripting languages available, including Perl 5, NetBasic 6.0, NetBasic 7.0, and JavaScript.


Novell, in collaboration with several third-party vendors is including as part of the NetWare 5 package, software that integrates with NDS and takes advantage of the security and services of NetWare 5. Listed below are some of the vendors and their products:


NetWare 5 includes a five-user version of Oracle8 for NetWare, which has been integrated with NDS. As a result, you can use NDS to control access to your company's database.

FastTrack Server

NetWare 5 provides a fully integrated version of the Netscape FastTrack server. This Web server uses Netscape Web server code specifically adapted for maximum performance on NetWare 5 and integration with NDS. This integration with NDS makes the Web server easier to administer and more secure by restricting who can administer the Web server and what content users can publish.

The FastTrack server supports the following Web enhancing technologies: NDS, LDAP, Common Gateway Interface (CGI), PERL, and NetBasic.


The Btrieve key-indexed record management system is designed for high-performance data handling and improved programming productivity. Btrieve allows an application to retrieve, insert, update, or delete records either by key value or by sequential or random access methods.


The new features and enhancements of NetWare 5 offer superior network management and control for system administrators, a more friendly and flexible interface for users, and the most secure and time and cost effective network operating system available. To learn more about these features visit the NetWare 5 home page at

* Originally published in Novell AppNotes


The origin of this information may be internal or external to Novell. While Novell makes all reasonable efforts to verify this information, Novell does not make explicit or implied claims to its validity.

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