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[Bug 460743] fail to copy files >4GB with ncpfs mounted volumes
  • From: bugzilla_noreply@xxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 22 Jan 2009 04:00:43 -0700 (MST)
  • Message-id: <20090122110043.03B7F245390@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
https://bugzilla.novell.com/show_bug.cgi?id=460743

User marcel.cox@xxxxxxxxx added comment
https://bugzilla.novell.com/show_bug.cgi?id=460743#c8


Marcel Cox <marcel.cox@xxxxxxxxx> changed:

What |Removed |Added
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CC| |marcel.cox@xxxxxxxxx




--- Comment #8 from Marcel Cox <marcel.cox@xxxxxxxxx> 2009-01-22 04:00:41 MST
---
While I have no solution to the problem itself, I would at least like to use my
knowlede about the NCP protocol and NetWare history to explain the current
situation.

The Novell Core Protocol (NCP) has been developped by Novell for the NetWare OS
and has been extended over time with new functionality as newer NetWare
versions were released. ncpfs and its related tools have not been written by
Novell, but rather they are based on reverse engineering of old versions of the
NCP protocol. I don't know whether the people that worked on ncpfs had access
to the official Novell NCP documentation. In any case, all the "newer"
functionality built into the NCP protocol is not included in ncpfs. The most
important NCP enhacements that were introduced in 2002 and 2003 and that are
not included in ncpfs are:
- 64 bit file system support
- utf8 support to correctly handle extended characters in file names

Issues related to these 2 missing features are regularly reported by ncpfs
users. E.g. the impossibility to handle files bigger than 4GB and the problems
or strange side effects that occur when using ncpfs on file names with special
characters.

To fix these problems, some significant work would have to be done to ncpfs. In
fact, ncpfs would have to keep track of the supported features (64 bit support
or itf8 support) per volume, and would have to decide per volume on whether to
use the old or the new NCP verbs to access the files on that volume.
Given that ncpfs is currently an orphaned package without maintainer, I doubt
anyone will do ^this work.

In this thread, the Novell client for Linux was mentioned. The Novell client
for Linux is *not* based on ncpfs. It is written to fully support all the newer
NCP protocol options and as such has no problems with files bigger than 4GB and
with files using special characters. Unfortunately, the Novell client for Linux
is not open source and is primarily targeted towards SLED and not openSUSE. As
such, openSUSE support is always running behind and new versions of openSUSE or
generally not directly supported and requires significant if you want to get
the client to work at all.

The real solution to the problem would be if Novell would open source their
Novell Client for Linux so that it could be kept up to date and would be
integral part of new releases of openSUSE and possibly also other
distributions. It could be used instead of ncpfs and would greatly benefit all
customers that would like to connect their Linux machines to Novell servers
(whether NetWare or OES).

PS. The official and up to date documentation for the NCP protocol can be found
here:
http://developer.novell.com/documentation/ncp/ncp__enu/data/bktitle.html
To quickly locate the description of the new NCP verbs, the history section of
the documentation can be used:
http://developer.novell.com/documentation/ncp/ncp__enu/data/a1wysid.html

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