Novell & Vista

I’ve never installed or configured novell on XP or any other OS for that matter so before attempting to get it to work on our Vista machine here in the office I was not familiar with it at all. It was fairly easy once they released the final version of it. I could not, for the life of me, get the beta client to work. I poked around online and tried numerous things on my own for about a month but never was able to figure it out.

It wasn’t smooth sailing after I finally got my hands on the stable release. I thought I’d just install it and make some configuration changes and it’d connect to Western’s network nicely. But no, of course not. I should have known better. I had the Novell properties box open on the machine next to me that was running XP and set up the Vista machine EXACTLY like that one. I spent so much time staring at it hoping I could scare it into working that I started getting headaches.

When I first started setting it up there was no documentation online that I could find because it had just been released and nobody had really tried to use it yet. But I finally came across a website that had the same problems I was having. I would like to be more specific about the problems but I honestly can’t remember any specifics, not even the website I got the information from. I think it was something like the context and the tree not showing up when trying to log in. But here’s what I found online and it worked like a charm.

1. Choose Custom Installation
   2. Do not install ANY additional services (uncheck NMAS, etc…)
   3. Go to Novell Properties
         1. Advanced Login
         2. Clear Connections – Turn to On
         3. Forgotten Password Prompt– Turn Off ##. NMAS Authentication
– Turn Off
   4. Go Advanced Settings
         1. File Caching – Turn Off
         2. File Commit – Turn On
   5. Go to Service Location Tab
         1. Add to Directory Agent List the following addresses
            • whatever address your company/university uses
   6. Reboot
   7. Right Click on the Novell Icon – Go to Novell Login
   8. Type in “anything” for the Username (no password needed at this
   9. Type in “WWU” for the Tree (no context/server needed at this
  10. CLICK “OK”, there will be an error for incorrect login/password
  11. After the error, the tree and contexts will appear
  12. Enter correct username/password
  13. Select the appropriate tree and context
  14. Users to should see the mapped drives now

The thing that pissed me off was that Novell Modular Authentication Service (NMAS) crap. That is the only thing that changed when I followed these directions. Unchecking the box that said to install NMAS was the reason I spent so many hours ready to pull my hair out.

I found the website I got the directions from. All the credit for telling me to uncheck that damn box goes to UCLA.


  1. #1 by sysadmin1138 on December 18, 2007 - 12:53 PM

    So. The Novell Client for Vista isn’t working with NMAS installed? How… Interesting. Especially since Novell is migrating (or trying to) all logins to use NMAS wherever possible. If that is turned off, then your Novell password is case-insensitive.

    I should probably break down and get myself a Vista VM up and running. Been unmotivated so far.

    You may want to give Update3 a try:

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