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Online Help for NetWare 3 Server Consoles

Articles and Tips: tip

Morgan Adair
Senior Research Engineer
Novell, Inc.

01 Jul 1996

Clear your desks and take out a pencil and paper, it's time for a pop quiz. Question 1: What is the syntax of the SPOOL command on a NetWare 3 server? Question 2: List all the server console commands on a NetWare 3 server.

If you're using NetWare 4, you could just type "HELP" at the server command line to get the answer to these questions. But Novell didn't think of including online help on the server console in NetWare 3. So, better late than never, Novell Research has solved this little annoyance.


HELP.NLM implements the HELP console command for NetWare 3. It works on NetWare 3.11 and 3.12, and gives you access to the same online help that you get on a NetWare 4 server. For example, once you load the HELP.NLM, if you type HELP <Enter> at the file server console command line, HELP.NLM displays all of the different console commands that are available to you. If you type HELP SPOOL <Enter>, you will see a screen similar to the following:

SPOOL spool_number [TO] [QUEUE] queue_name Create, change, or display spooler mappings Example: spool 1 to queue laser

(Actually, since I wrote and tested HELP.NLM on a NetWare 4 server, it also works on NetWare 4, except that it adds a WHAT command that works identically to the HELP command.) To load HELP.NLM, just copy the NLM executable file to your SYS:SYSTEM directory, then type LOAD HELP <Enter> at the server console prompt. You may want to put the command to load HELP.NLM in your AUTOEXEC.BAT file, so you can always have online help available.

Getting the HELP.NLM

You can download HELP.NLM from the Web at the URL. Go to the download area and download the file NW3HELP.ZIP. You can also download it from CompuServe's NOVUSER forum.

Rolling Your Own

If you've done a little programming in C (or know someone who has), you might be interested in looking at how to write a NetWare console command. The process is discussed in an article called "Adding Console Commands to NetWare" in the April 1996 issue of Novell Developer Notes (another fine Novell Research publication). There's a form in the back of this issue of AppNotes for ordering back issues of DevNotes; specify part number 164-000049-004 for the April 96 issue.

If you'd like to look at the source code for HELP.NLM, it's included in the ZIP file with the executable in the NOVUSER forum on CompuServe. Or if you don't have access to Compuserve, send an email message to, with the words "Get Help Source" in the subject line. (Be sure to include the word "Source," because I get lot of messages from people telling me to "Get Help.")

* Originally published in Novell AppNotes


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