Hello Scott,

You wrote:
>My two big problems with Netserver are that it is buggy, and doesn't work
>with all of the various SMB clients ("but it works with Windows, and
>that's all that counts, right?!?!") and it's comparatively slow.

Those are my main complaints about NetServer too.  As I discovered when
beating the NetServer APIs into submission (a fair number of the PTFs for
NetServer were a direct result of me using the APIs and finding out that a)
they didn't work, b) they didn't work as documented, or c) they worked when
passed literals but not when passed variables -- doh!) NetServer is
probably the buggiest piece of software to come out of Rochester.  It is so
bad that I'd swear it wasn't written by IBMers.

It is so buggy that they drop support for things they can't get to work.
For instance, NetServer supported OS/2 file and print sharing at VRM420 --
complete with PTFs for various OS/2 related fixes.  Then they had problems
with print sharing so they made that a permanent restriction.  Then they
had file share problems so they removed support for OS/2 entirely.  You can
see the history in IBMs APARs.  Much NetServer documentation still says
that OS/2 is supported ...

Mind you, checking the APAR history indicates they've been working on
NetServer since at least VRM370 and it didn't get released until 420 so
they obviously had difficulty.  Given how buggy it was at release (and
still is) I'm inclined to think the problem is with the developers rather
than anything else.

What jars the most is that NT or W2K will quite happily share with OS/2
(except for W2K eating up connections for no adequate reason) and I KNOW
Microsloth aren't doing anything to specifically support OS/2.  Samba also
works with OS/2.  At least they don't specifically exclude OS/2 but
NetServer does.  It rejects an OS/2 connection attempt with a misleading
"Invalid user or password" message which is crap because I've traced the
SMB protocol and can see a valid user id and password being sent to
NetServer.  NetServer does support W31 clients which use very much the same
SMB level as OS/2 so where's the problem -- long names?

I realise that the SMB protocol has evolved with each MS OS but you would
think that once a particular level worked NetServer could add support for
the next level without breaking the previous level.  Obviously not.

So now NetServer (at 510) supports Linux.  Big deal.  Does that mean any
Unix SMB implementation will work?  SMB is SMB.  What's so special about
NetServer that they artificially restrict the client pool?

Perhaps an AS/400 port of Samba would be the go?  I know it would suffer in
performance being implemented above the MI but surely it couldn't be any
slower than NetServer itself?  And if it supported any SMB client then that
may mitigate the performance aspect.  Who's interested?

Regards,
Simon Coulter.

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