Beginner's Novell Admin question

I need to move a large amount of data from one Novell server to another. My choices of tools are Netware Admin, ConsoleOne, and regular everyday Windows. Of these three, what is the fastest way to copy whole folders?

If you don’t have a SAN, tape restore, or portable drive as an option, you can use the Novell File Copy utility from a Windows PC.

From a Windows workstation with the Novell client installed, right click on the folder you want to copy, and select Netware Copy from the context menu. There’s a destination button to browse for where you want the files copied, and you have options to filter by file extension, not to overwrite newer files, and whether to retain the file attributes.

That worked about as good as I could have hoped. Damn, Novell is slow. 1 1/2 hours to copy 70 Megs. Thanks for the help!

That seems a bit off… The whole point of the Netware Copy option is so that the servers can optimize the path the copied data takes.

I’m certainly no Novell expert, but it sounds like the Novell Server Consolidation Utility might help.

That’s used whenever there is a new software build. I generally stay away from that part of it, though. This instance was a single install location that the local support guy couldn’t access. Rather than wait several days for a security request to complete to grant him access to a folder that he would only use once, I just copied it to his local server.

Our client just rolled out a new PC image that incorporates the drivers for the new Dells, and it now sits at a whopping 5 Gigs compressed. I don’t know how long it actually took to copy, but it was definitely over 18 hours. The sad part is that the copy was started on Friday afternoon and it wasn’t until Monday afternoon that they realized that it had been put into the wrong folder on all 20 servers.

Something sounds wonky with the network, Netware isn’t likely the bottleneck. Are you running legacy servers on old hardware? 10mb infrastructure?

This is a huge, huge old company. Nothing would surprise me. On the other hand, all the leases are 3 years. I don’t know enough about the infrastructure to give you anything concrete.

Here is a random server from the inventory listing, fwiw:
IBM xSeries 345 Xeon 2.67ghz (x2) 2.5 GB RAM

That does sound abnormally slow. You might want to check the duplex settings and the NIC settings in monitor to see if there are any CRC or other packet related errors.

If you want to do server to server copy, you can download toolbox. That gives you command line utilities to log into a different server and perform copy operations. That means all the traffic stays between the servers and doesn’t go through a workstation at all.

Irrespective of the method you use the data has to be actually moved from one server to another (duh!). This is only going to be as fast as the medium you’re using.

If you’re talking a hundred gig of data or so, copying over a network will take a while but kick it off one evening and let it run all night. Just make sure your network link is a good one (100M-1G - full duplex). Using netware copy won’t be specifically faster (it’s only faster copying from one place on the server to another on the same server as the data never has to involve the client PC) but it will preserve netware information if specified (trustee rights, file owners etc).

Copying to a external usb device will probably be slower given that it’s a 2 stage process (copy data to device, copy data off device) and you’ll loose a lot (all) of the netware specific information. But if the two servers are out of range of a network cable, that may be the most efficient option.

For very large amounts of data (100s of Gs) transfer of data to a high-capacity, high-speed storage medium may be your most practical option. I’m talking an internal scsi HDD or a tape drive. There are complications doing it that way but for significant terrabytes of info it’s the most practical method. Physical transport of the HDD is the easiest method to transfer that sort of data volumes but it depends on your data structure. Transporting a RAID array to another server is a nightmare. If you can put in a few additional SCSI drives as stand-alone volumes, copy the data to them internally then move the drives to the new server you’ll save a bit of heartache.