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Off Campus Access to Micro Focus Servers using the Micro Focus client

Computing Services Technote #511 v20

Title: Off Campus Access to Micro Focus Servers using the Micro Focus Client
Applies to: Users wishing to access work files on Micro Focus servers from off campus
Section: Network Services
Owner: Manager of Network Services
Last updated: 03 January 2020

Introduction

Campus users may wish to access data located on a Micro Focus (Novell) server from a computer that is physically located off campus but connected to the Internet.  This document describes methods of doing this.  As there is a degree of complexity associated with installing and configuring the Micro Focus Client on systems that are not located on campus, it is highly recommended that users consider using Webdrive or Netstorage service (see below).  Netstorage is appropriate for users of all skill levels and requires that you only have a working web browser, such as Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer.

Support on Windows Platform

More information on Computing Services' supported Windows platforms and policies can be found on the Computing Services webpage.

Alternatives

There are two alternatives to installing the Micro Focus client:

  1. Use the Netstorage service that provides a secure web based interface to the Micro Focus servers. Unless you do a lot of work with files remotely this is likely the best alternative.
  2. Access the files by installing the webdrive client. This maps a drive on your PC that emulates most of the normal functionality available in on campus drive mapping.

The use of Netstorage and webdrive are not discussed any more in this document. If you encounter problems using them please contact IT Support.

Prerequisites

Your system must be running Windows 7 or Windows 10 with at least 500Mb of disk space free and have a working internet connection.  Users of dial-up internet will likely find access via a dial up connection to be tediously slow and, as such, a high speed internet connection is highly recommended.  You must have a login account on a Micro Focus Server at the UofR.  This account is often referred to as a uregina.ca account.

Micro Focus Client Installation

You must first verify that your internet connection is working properly and that you are logged into an account with administrator access. Once you have done this, you can then install the Micro Focus client:

  1. The client can be downloaded from URL: http://download.novell.com/ (you will be asked to create a free login to download the client). At the time of this document's publication, the current client version for Windows 7/10 was V2 SP4 IR10. To find the most recent client:
      click Advanced Search
      uncheck NetIQ and SUSE
      scroll to find Novell Client
      click on Novell Client
      under Search Filters select Windows in AnyPlatform/OS dropdown
      click Submit Query
      find the latest client for Windows
  2. Create the directory c:\nwclient (or another directory) and move the file you just downloaded to it. Extract it by running the file you just downloaded.
  3. Review the installation instructions in technical note 510 before beginning the install. 
  4. For systems that will be located solely or mostly off campus, the install instructions in technical note 510 should be used but the ZDM Agent install detailed in technical note 545 should not be used without first consulting network services.
  5. Be sure to review the System Login section below which contains information on how your login process will change now that the Micro Focus Client is installed.
  6. Be sure to make the changes specified in the Micro Focus Client Configuration section, specified below. Your system will not be able to contact the campus servers if you do not make these configuration changes.

The Micro Focus client should now be installed on your system.

System Login

Logging into an unmanaged system with the Micro Focus client install differs from the normal procedure that occurs on campus.

  • The first time you log into your system you will need to bypass the Micro Focus login (using either cancel or a workstation only login as described below) and configure your Micro Focus client properties, as described in the next section.
  • When presented with the Micro Focus login prompt, it is necessary to set the NDS tree and context.  This can be done by clicking on the advanced button and, if required, clicking on the NDS tab that appears.  You may have to enter the Micro Focus user name first before the advanced button can be used. The Tree should be set to "uofr"' and the context should be set to ".all.uofr", in both cases without the quotation marks.  Once you have successfully logged in with these settings, the client will remember them.  If you do experience problems with logon in the future, double check these settings.
  • Windows requires the use of login accounts to control access to the computer.  On campus, the local accounts are synchronized with the Micro Focus accounts.  However for off-campus systems that are not, and should not be, configured as managed systems, these accounts are not synchronized.  As such you will have to log into Micro Focus and the local computer separately unless you manually synchronize your account names and passwords.  Instructions for this are beyond the scope of this document.
  • Normally, the Micro Focus login prompt will always be displayed when Windows boots up.  If you have an "always-on" high speed connection you can enter your uregina.ca credentials.  Your username and password will be verified and, in most cases, you will then be prompted for a username and password to log into the local workstation.  At this point enter the username and password that you used prior to installing the Micro Focus client.
  • If you have a dial up network connection or if you do not wish to log into Micro Focus when your computer boots up, click "Computer Only Logon" on the Micro Focus login prompt.  Then enter the username and password that you used before installing the Micro Focus client.  This will log you directly into Windows without logging you into the Micro Focus servers.
  • If the Micro Focus login is skipped or not available at system startup, the user can log into Micro Focus at a later time via the Micro Focus Client System Tray icon. On campus this icon is a white N on a blue background. The default icon for this install, as of this writing, will be an empty square slightly offset on another empty square. If you move the mouse pointer to this icon it will say "Client for Open Enterprise Server". Right click on that icon and then choose "OES Login...".

Micro Focus Client Configuration

To configure the Micro Focus Client:

  • Right click on the "Client for Open Enterprise Server" icon in the system tray and select Client Properties. 
  • Select the service location tab and enter the host nwdiragent.uregina.ca in the directory agent list section.
  • If Active Discovery is listed below the Static option, ensure that Active Discovery is unchecked.
  • Click OK to close the dialogue box.

Disabling Login Scripts

In almost all cases, you will want to disable processing login scripts to improve the speed of your login. To disable running login scripts, click on the Advanced button when logging in and then click on the Script tab and uncheck the Run Scripts button. On Windows 7/10, you can manually map drive letters by right clicking on the "Client for Open Enterprise Server" icon in the system tray and selecting "OES Map Network Drive...".  Some common drive mappings are:

  • \\compserv1\vol1 for S:
  • \\compserv1\vol2 for T:
  • \\compserv3\vol1 for U: (where I: drives are stored)
  • \\compserv9\arts for O:
  • \\engineering\vol1 for P:

Logging Off

Micro Focus client expects a continuous connection to the server so you must disconnect your Micro Focus mappings before you disconnect your modem. To do this right click on the "Client for Open Enterprise Server" icon in the system tray on your desktop and select "OES Connections...". Highlight the UofR line and choose detach.

Troubleshooting

If you have trouble accessing Micro Focus from home verify the following:

  • Verify your internet connection is working properly.  One method of doing this could be using your web browser to visit a web site that is external to your location.
  • If you get an error message Unable to find selected tree you should double check that you entered the directory agent correctly as nwdiragent.UREGINA.CA. Also ensure that the static option on the same tab is checked, and if present, the active discovery option is unchecked.
  • If you still have troubles connecting, select the advanced button on the main login screen and try entering the IP address 142.3.103.25 in the server field.
  • If you are having trouble mapping a drive try using the IP instead of the server name (compserv3=142.3.100.3,compserv1=142.3.100.36,Compserv9=142.3.100.10 and Engineering=142.3.103.85). For example to map \\compserv1\vol1 use \\142.3.100.36\vol1

Conclusion

Procedures for logging into Micro Focus file servers from off campus locations are described.

Revision History

v0, 1997-07-05, Initial version(draft)
v3, 1999-10-19, instructions for disabling login script and manually mapping drives added.
v4, 2000-02-07, added troubleshooting tip to try server IP instead of name when mapping drive
v7, 2002-04-19, updated with additional help on downloading from Novell download site.
v8, 2002-04-19. updated with netstorage as alternative to Novell client
v10, 2003-10-08, when configuring nwdiragent added instructions to check staticbox and disable active discovery
v12, 2005-01-24, updated to include Windows XP information.
v13, 2005-08-11, updated IP address of Engineering server.
v14, 2005-11-29, reviewed for accuracy with release of Novell Client 4.91, no other changes.
v15, 2006-08-17, updated to reflect the removal of Win98 support
v16, 2006-08-31, updated to include compserv3 as commonly accessed server
v17, 2007-01-05, removed reference to urcomm
v18, 2012-09-01, changed server info for O: drive mapping and changed default suggested server from 142.3.100.18 to 142.3.100.10. Cleared out version update info that referred to old unused versions. Added references to Windows 7 and the use of the red N system tray.
v19, 2015-10-19, list most recent clients and update configuration instructions due to differences between XP and Windows 7.
v20, 2020-01-03, Remove XP. Add Windows 10. Change Novell to Micro Focus.