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Sunbelt W2Knews™ Electronic Newsletter
The secret of those "who always seem to know" - Over 500,000 Readers!
Tue, Jan 20, 1998
MICROSOFT REFUSES NDS SUPPORT
  This issue of W2Knews™ contains:
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<<< NTools E-NewsFlash >>>[tm] MICROSOFT REFUSES NDS SUPPORT
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Jan 20, 1998

Hi NT-ers,

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!! Some REALLY HOT NEWS that simply could not wait !!!
!!! till the next newsletter... !!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


--- MICROSOFT REFUSES SUPPORT FOR NOVELL NDS USERS ---

You may wonder where I get all this. I have a few smart
software agents scouring the Internet, I'm subscribed to
PR Newswire and Business Wire, and electronic news clip-
ping services that tell me everything that happens with
and about NT, and I read dozens of computer trade mags.

So if something really HOT happens, I know about it at
seven in the morning when I check my NTWS hooked up to
the 4KB fiber here in Clearwater, FL. NTools E-News 
promises to keep you up to date with the HOTTEST NT News 
as soon as it occurs. Forward this email to colleagues 
that are not subcribed yet? Thanks! Here is the URL to 
get it: http://www.sunbelt-software.com/scripts/lyris.pl? 
and subscribe to NTools E-News.

So, when I read this one, I thought "WHOA NELLIE!"
We are talking open warfare between Microsoft and Novell.
The issue in question is Novell's Novell Directory Services 
(NDS) for NT. Novell's NDS for NT was meant to be a 
cornerstone of the vendor's attempts to coexist with NT.

But here is Microsoft's reaction, got your safety belts on?

They published a scathing rebuke of NDS for NT on the MS
website in which they said they cannot support Novell NDS 
on NT Server because of serious technical issues.

"To be clear," Microsoft wrote, "NDS for NT is not an inter-
operability solution. It is an 'All NDS' solution masked as a 
way to interoperate with Windows NT Server and BackOffice."

Microsoft claims that the product was not tested on NT and 
BackOffice test configurations, and that it makes customers 
less secure and breaks the upgrade from Windows NT Server 4.0 
to Windows NT Server 5.0.

Novell states the claims are nonsense. "Microsoft's technical
gloss is mostly nonsense and mostly FUD [fear, uncertainty and 
doubt]," a spokesperson said.

Novell announced on Jan. 13 a 25 percent discount. The discount 
runs through April 30. Novell positions NDS for NT as directory
software for reducing the costs of managing NT Servers.

Microsoft now plans to refuse technical support to any NT sites
that install Novell's NDS for NT, and listen to this, "regardless 
of whether the problem actually lies with NDS, or not"
That's a tough position to take if I may say so.

If you are running NT-only, the MS direction is clear: Wait
for Active Directory if you need a comprehensive directory and 
want NT technical support.

But if you are running a mixed NT-Netware environment, the choice
is harder. Either run different directories on each operating system, 
which basically is a pain in the neck, or install NDS for NT and 
hope that MS NT technical support is never needed. Not really good 
either and impossible for sites with MS Premier Support contracts.

Microsoft stated this new policy in a document on its Web site, 
and explaining the policy is required for technical reasons. MS
says no support can be given because NDS "replaces critical NT 
system DLLs associated with authentication and security."

"Replacing these DLLs can render the system less reliable and 
secure, ruin upgrades from Windows NT Server 4.0 to 5.0, and 
prevent the application of NT service packs" is what MS claims.

Microsoft's claims were disputed by Novell's counter-statement:

"NDS for NT replaces only a single DLL (not two as Microsoft has
indicated), and this DLL is not associated with NT authentication or
security functions (as Microsoft claims)," the document says.
Novell commented that they successfully tested an upgrade to Beta 1
NT 5.0 with NDS for NT.

I have to say that it looks like MS has gotten a bit nervous at the 
success of NDS for NT and blocking Novell in the market takes 
precendence over supporting their own customers. But I'm willing to
be wrong. Who of the hundreds of Microsofties on this list can give
us some more technical feedback on this?

If you want to discuss this with your colleague NT System Admins,
subscribe to the World's largest NT SysAdmin List server: 3,700 
subscribers! http://www.sunbelt-software.com/scripts/lyris.pl? 
The topic is NT System Admin Issues.

And one other unrelated item, we just updated our website with
10 great screenshots of the most encountered problems with NT
storage management and how SRM solves these:
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/srmshots.htm
1. Partition Space Management and Capacity Planning 
2. User Consumption and Soft Quotas 
3. Disk Health and Reliability 
4. Backup Effectiveness and Backup Holes 
5. File Growth and Modification Rates 
6. Storage Resource Discovery and Asset Tracking
7. Stale Storage and Wasted Space
8. Load Balancing and Performance Planning
9. Application and User Tracking
10.RAID Management


That's all my friends!

Warm regards,

Stu Sjouwerman

(email me with feedback: [email protected])