Greater than 4GB files and NetWare Networks

  • 3253332
  • 02-Jun-2007
  • 26-Apr-2012

Environment

Novell NetWare 6.0 Support Pack 2
Novell NetWare 6.5
Novell Client 4.9
Microsoft Windows NT4
Microsoft Windows 2000 Support Pack 4
Microsoft Windows XP Professional

Situation

Greater than 4GB files and NetWare Networks

Resolution

In order for a PC network to support file sizes that are greater than 4 GB (utilize offset pointers that are larger than 32-bits), there are 3 major components that must all come together in order for this to work:

1) The Server File System. The File System must have the ability to handle larger than 32-bit offsets.

2) The File Access Protocol. The protocol, or language the system uses on the network cable to communicate between the clients and servers must support larger than 32-bit offsets.

3) The Client File System. The Client workstation must have the ability to handle larger than 32-bit offsets. This includes the client file system infrastructure and network requesters.

If one of these three components is missing, then network file access of files greater than 4GB in size is not possible.

File System:Novell introduced the NSS file system in NetWare 5.0 in 1998 which allowed for greater than 4GB files. However, none of the file access protocols were instrumented at that time to take advantage of this, and the lionshare of desktop operating systems also could not handle files greater than 4GB. So files greater than 4GB were restricted to those created and accessed by server based applications (GroupWise, Oracle, etc.).

File Protocols:

The NCP protocol had the additional verbs added to support greater than 4GB file access in NetWare 6.0 SP2.

The Microsoft CIFS protocol had the additional verbs added with Windows NT4, but Novell's CIFS support did not have those added into NetWare CIFS until NetWare 6.5. Apple Filing Protocol (AFP) had the additional verbs for>4GB file size support added by Apple in the protocol spec v3.0 in conjunction with MacOS X. Novell added the support to its implementation of the AFP protocol in NetWare 6.5.

The Unix NFS protocol 2 does not support files >4GB, but NFS protocol 3 does. Novell's implementation of protocol 3 initially had problem with files>4GB, but fixes were made in NFS 3.0 SP5, NFAP 1 SP3, and NetWare 6.0 SP3. (NetWare 6.5 NFS never had this problem).

NetWare FTP supports the transfer of files greater than 4GB as of NetWare 6.5 SP1 and NetWare 6.0 SP4. However, in FTP directory lists, the size of files over 4 GB will not be listed correctly. (Previous to NetWare 6.5 SP7 or NWFTPD.NLM 5.08.06, the directly list limitation was 2 GB rather than 4GB). This will not effect the ability to fully transfer of those files. For more information on FTP size reporting, see Novell Technical Document 3766638 (https://support.novell.com/search/kb_index.htm).

Client Desktops:Microsoft introduced the ability to support greater than 4GB files in Windows NT4. Windows 9x,ME operating systems do not have the ability to access files greater than 4GB. This was in 1997. Novell added the NCP support in the Windows NT class file system redirector with the Novell Client v4.9 that shipped with NetWare 6.5 (but works back to NetWare 6.0 SP2 and later). Microsoft CIFS supports greater than 4GB file access in Windows NT4, 2K, and XP only. Apple introduced the ability to support greater than 4GB files in MacOS X. MacOS 9 and prior operating systems do not have the ability to access files greater than 4GB. Unix/Linux variants are difficult to track. Most of the larger vendor Unix (HPUX, Solaris) began supporting greater than 4GB files with their releases that supported NFS v3 *completely*. SUN's Solaris was the first to do this. Even today, there are many Linux variants that don't support greater than 4GB file access.

In summary:

Windows Clients: Must have Windows NT4, 2K or XP (recommend 2K sp4 or later), must have Novell Client v4.9 (or later) AND NW6SP2 (or later) OR NetWare CIFS with NetWare 6.5 (or later), all running the NSS file System.

Macintosh Clients: Must have MacOS X (recommend 10.2.3 or later) AND NetWare AFP with NetWare 6.5 (or later), all running the NSS file System.

Unix/Linux Clients using NFS protocol: Must have Unix/Linux OS that FULLY supports NFS v3, must have a minimum of either (a) NetWare NFS Services 3.0 SP5 running on NetWare 5.1 SP6, or (b) Native File Access Pack 1.0 SP3 running on NetWare 5.1 SP6, or (c) NetWare 6.0 SP3 (with it's Native File Access installed), or (d) NetWare 6.5. In all of these cases, the NSS file system must be in use.

FTP clients: In addition to the requirement of the client software and OS platform being able to handle sizes over 4GB, the Novell FTP server must be a minimum of NetWare 6.5 SP1 or NetWare 6.0 SP4.

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Additional Information


Formerly known as TID# 10091994

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