DHCP Options

Could someone please tell me what the correct settings are for adding option 85 to DHCP on MS Server 2008 R2. I have looked at some KBs from microsoft as well as TIDs but I cant seem to figure out if I'm doing something wrong. I am trying to add this option with the server name instead of the ip. When I configure the option as an ip address array, the address displays in the client correctly under the server setting. However when I configure the option as a String array (see DHCP_option.png) the server field under the client is blank (see Client.png). I have looked in the registry on a workstation under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Novell\Login\DHCP and it shows the server value as hex data (see DHCP_SYSreg.png).
Is this working as intended or am I missing something?

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  • The main tripping point here is that the string format is actually
    just a pre-RFC draft format that was part of the draft proposals but
    never part of the final RFCs. The Novell Client for DOS/Windows,
    95/98 and up through XP/2003 did support the draft "string" format in
    addition to the actual RFC-spec IP address array format.

    Novell Client for Windows Vista and later only support the RFC-spec IP
    address array format, and are making no attempt to recognize a DHCP
    server dispensing the old pre-RFC format. To make the Novell Client
    for Windows 7 pick up a DHCP option 85, it will have to be the IP
    address array.

    Note if you were trying to deliver to XP/2003 machines, yes it should
    be possible to make a Microsoft DHCP Server deliver the data in that
    format. But as I recall you can't simply declare "set option 85 as a
    string" and then use standard string entry in the Microsoft DHCP
    Server MMC console.

    To define the data in pre-RFC string format (and what made it even
    possible for the older clients to detect draft format instead of RFC
    format) is the fact that there are unique lead bytes in the data prior
    to the string. So you have to use "byte array" when defining the
    option on the DHCP server, and manually enter in both the draft-spec
    lead bytes followed by the bytes when then contain the actual string

    But if you need to deliver to both Windows 7 and Windows XP/2003
    platforms from the same DHCP server, only the RFC-spec IP address
    array format is going to work for both types of client workstations.

    Alan Adams
    Novell Client CPR Group

    Making IT Work As One

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