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I'm planning to virtualize our one remaining Netware-based server (it's Netware 5.1 SP8e running Groupwise 7.3). After P2V-ing 50-odd Windows and Linux servers to date we've got the process pretty much down and can handle most issues that might occur during the process. However, we don't have much in the way of Netware or Groupwise experience in the team and this is making me slightly twitchy as the machine in question is critical to one area of our business.

I've already decided that a "cold" P2V is the best approach but beyond that, is anyone who's done this able to offer advice and/or let me know what pitfalls lie ahead so I can read up before starting the job? There seems to be very little in the way of useful information out there (that I've been able to find...)

All information is gratefully received (even if it's just "don't do it!")

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The tool for you is Novell's "Server Consolidation and Migration Toolkit". You can go to and search for 'scmt.exe' to get it. That provides a way to do a server migration from point A to point B. It's really really good. I've used it for cold P2P migrations for years before P2V became an option. It's not a next-next-next-finish P2V process, but is pretty close. The procedure is:

  1. Install NetWare to your VM. Name it something unique, and in its own eDir tree.
    • This sets up your hardware environment.
  2. Launch the SCMT.
  3. Select "Migrate Data to New Server (hardware upgrade)"
  4. Select the tree of your in-production NetWare server.
  5. Select the tree of your server you set up in step 1.
  6. Then arrange your data to taste (you can even change volume names if you want, but I don't think you want to here) using the drag-n-drop interface.
  7. When it comes time to pull the trigger on the migration, shut down all running GroupWise agents on the source server.
  8. In the SCMT go to Project and select Migrate.
  9. Follow the prompts. It'll guide you through the process.
    • You'll probably have to hand-edit autoexec.ncf to ensure the config is fully what you want.
    • It's probably a wise thing to comment out the groupwise load-lines for now.

When all is done, you'll shutdown your old server and restart the VMed server. When the VMed server comes up it'll come up. Verify it looks the way it should, and manually start the GroupWise agents. If it comes up clean (and it should) de-comment the load-lines in autoexec.ncf.

This tool would also allow you to migrate to OES2-Linux if you want, which is actually a better host for GroupWise than NetWare. I'd hold off on that due to the GroupWise, since that complicates the migration process in ways that are hard to describe here.

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I think the key points with Netware will be: - Is your virtual environment going to support the file systems Netware uses? - Does the system depend on IPX/SPX?

I know they implemented TCP/IP support from version 4.11 but it wasn't 'complete' at that point. The next version I'm familiar with is 6.5 where it was TCP/IP native. If you're stuck with some non-TCP/IP networking in the mix somewhere, I think you'll encounter problems running as a VM.

As for the file system... a cold clone then power on just for testing purposes.

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