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What's New in NetWare 4.2?

Articles and Tips: article

01 Feb 1999

Provides an overview of what's new in NetWare 4.2. Includes information on issues to be aware of in planning for an upgrade to NetWare 4.2.


Novell recently released NetWare 5, the #1 network for Internet-enabled businesses. Through NDS, it centralizes management of entire heterogeneous networks-delivering an average 69 percent savings in administrative costs over non-directory-based systems. It supports open standards including pure IP, runs next-generation distributed applications, and delivers reliable networking services-at the lowest total cost of network ownership.

NetWare 5 represents a very compelling upgrade to users of earlier versions of NetWare. However, Novell also understands that many loyal customers will continue to realize great value in their NetWare 4 systems, and that the upgrade decision involves many factors. NetWare 4 has and will continue to be an important part of the networking solution that many customers' businesses depend on every day, and it will often be used in a mixed environment with NetWare 5 servers. To help these loyal NetWare customers reap the full value of their networking infrastructure, Novell has introduced NetWare 4.2. This latest version of the NetWare 4 family will allow customers to leverage and extend the investments they have made in their current network as they evaluate and prepare to upgrade to NetWare 5 in the future.

NetWare 4.2 is a proven networking solution for Internet-enabled businesses, providing outstanding management and control capabilities for increasingly complex networks, and delivering greater business value at a lower total cost of ownership. NetWare 4.2 provides valuable enhancements that will help organizations to better manage increasingly complex networks including the Internet and corporate intranets.

Over the past few months, Novell has placed a lot of emphasis on the advanced capabilities of NetWare 5. To address the needs of NetWare 4 users who cannot upgrade to NetWare 5 for business reasons at this time, Novell has developed NetWare 4.2 as a comprehensive upgrade and enhancement package for current NetWare 4.x networks.

This Developer Note provides an overview of what's new in NetWare 4.2. It discusses several issues that customers need to be aware of in planning for an upgrade to NetWare 4.2.

Additional information on NetWare 4.2 is available on the Internet at

Features and Benefits of NetWare 4.2

The new features and benefits in NetWare 4.2 will provide improved solutions for meeting our customers and partners needs for better management and control of increasingly complex networks, greater business value at a lower cost of ownership, enhanced intranet and Internet infrastructure support, and increased security, reliability, scalability, and performance.

Major enhancements include the following:

  • Support Pack v6 with integrated, automated install

    1. NDS v6.0

    2. Optional NetWare 4.11 Year 2000 fixes

  • Z.E.N. Works Starter Pack

    1. Latest Windows NT, 3.1, 95/98 clients

    2. Novell Application Launcher (NAL)

  • Unlimited Port NetWare Connect

  • Novell Upgrade Wizard

  • Netscape FastTrack Web server

  • Updated Multi-Protocol Router

  • PERL v5.1

  • NetBasic v6

  • Three-user version of NetWare 5

  • Five-user version of Oracle 8

  • HTML Documentation

NetWare 4.2 Features and Benefits

This section discusses the features and benefits of migrating your existing NetWare 4 networks to NetWare 4.2.

Full NetWare 5 Compatibility. NetWare 4.2 ensures compatibility with NetWare 5 by including IP and IPX protocol integration and NetWare 4's most current versionof NDS, the industry-leading directory services from Novell. It also includes the same IP and ZENworks-ready client software as NetWare 5, so that desktops in a NetWare 4.2 environment are primed to fully leverage NetWare 5 servers as they are added. A three-user demonstration copy of NetWare 5 is also included to help customers evaluate and prepare for future NetWare 5 upgrades.

Improved Network Management and Control. The Z.E.N. works Starter Pack is included with NetWare 4.2 and provides tools that allow for the centralized administration of desktops and applications based on the Windows platform.

Lower Total Cost of Ownership. NetWare 4.2 comes witha five-user version of Oracle*, the industry-leading relational database. The upgrade process from earlier NetWare versions is simplified with the inclusion of the Novell Upgrade Wizard. NetWare 4.2 also allows network acces for remote employees via NetWare Connect.

Improved Internet/intranet Integration. NetWare 4.2 provides a complete set of improved Internet/intranet services, including Netscape FastTrack Web Server for NetWare, Netscape Communicator, and a new version of the Multi-protocol Router(v3.2). New versions of the Perl (v5.1) and NetBasic (v6) scripting tools are also included and make the development of Web-based applications even easier.

Improved Security, Reliability, Scalability, and Performance. NetWare 4.2 is built upon the same core operating system as NetWare 4.11 and has been integrated with all reliability updates. NetWare 4.2 also supports the Euro currency. Furthermore, all components of NetWare 4.2 have been thoroughly tested for Year 2000 readiness.

NetWare 4.2 Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What product do I purchase if I have NetWare 3.x and/or 4.x and want to reap the business value of new product enhancements?

A. Customers who currently have a NetWare 3.x or 4.x network and want to take advantage of new technology should seriously evaluate NetWare 5 or NetWare for Small Business. However, Novell also understands that many loyal customers will continue to realize great value in their NetWare 3.x and 4.x systems, and that the upgrade decision involves many factors. To help these loyal customers reap the full value of their networking infrastructure, Novell recommends upgrading or installing NetWare 3.2 or NetWare 4.2.

Q. Should I upgrade to NetWare 4.2 or NetWare 5?

A. Novell believes that NetWare 5 provides the benefits and value that most customers of networking solutions desire. We recommend that all customers look at NetWare 5 as the best option for realizing the value of directory-enabled networking coupled with the highest level of Internet-enabled integration available in a server operating system. However, Novell also realizes that many customers have very good business reasons for wanting to continue to buy and use NetWare 4. NetWare 4.2 will help users of earlier versions of NetWare to leverage and extend their networking investments, and prime them for an upgrade to NetWare 5 in the future.

Q. Will I be able to upgrade to NetWare 5?

A. Absolutely, the upgrade process is easier now than ever before! Not only are there numerous tools available to make the actual upgrade process a snap, but with a three-user demonstration copy of NetWare 5 included in the NetWare 4.2 box, it will be even easier to see the benefits and evaluate the positive impact to each business.

Q. Do I need to upgrade all of my 3.x or 4.x servers to take advantage of 4.2?

A. Yes. Each individual NetWare 3.x or 4.x server needs to be upgraded in order to reap the benefits of NetWare 4.2. While a NetWare 4.2 server will coexist with any other server running another version of NetWare, it is recommended that you upgrade all of your servers to 4.2, or better yet, proceed straight to NetWare 5.

Q. Will all my current NetWare 4.x applications run on 4.2?

A. Yes. NetWare 4.2 passed a rigorous testing process and has been thoroughly tested with many third-party applications.

Q. Can I upgrade to NetWare 4.2 for free if I have purchased upgrade protection and maintenance with my VLA, CLA or MLA contract?

A. This depends on the specific nature of your VLA, CLA or MLA contract. Contact your Novell sales representative or your reseller to discuss your eligibility for an upgrade.

Q. Will Novell continue to add enhancements to NetWare 4.2?

A. Novell is always looking for better ways to serve its loyal customers and will continue to provide the richest, most robust networking solutions that the market place requires. We will continue to monitor customer requests for new product features. However, there are currently no plans to further enhance NetWare 4.2.

Q. Is Novell admitting that customers are not moving to NetWare 5?

A. On the contrary, NetWare 5, which was released in September of 1998, is being rapidly accepted by a market place eager to receive the business benefits it offers. Novell's motivation for creating NetWare 4.2 is to provide customers with another strong and compelling network option so that customers can choose the solution that best addresses their unique needs.

NetWare 4.2's Services Are Optimized for Networking

Through NDS, the network knows who you are and securely delivers what you need. NetWare 4.2 with NDS enhances the manageability of everything tied to the distributed network, including application, desktops and printers. NetWare 4.2 w/NDS makes your diverse network (NT, UNIX, Mainframes, etc.) cost effective and manageable.

In summary, NetWare 4.2 reinforces Novell's commitment to customer satisfaction, and our role as your strategic networking vendor. NetWare 4.2:

  • is a mature, secure, reliable, scalable server operating system offering outstanding performance.

  • is backed globally by the worlds largest networking service, support, education and consulting team over 500,00 professionals worldwide.

  • delivers on the promise of the Internet. NetWare 4.2's open standards and advanced technologies allow you to exploit the Internet and incorporate intranets as serious, secure business tools that deliver faster access to information and technology resources, leading to increased profitability.

  • reinforces Novell's commitment to provide the best network solutions for the growing and evolving needs of businesses.

* 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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