Migrate NetWare SLPDA to OES2 OpenSLP

This question has come up many times lately on the support forums. So I figured I'd write a little guide on how to migrate your NetWare SLPDA to OES2 OpenSLP. This compliments my other OES2 guides, although since there is no official migration utility from Novell, this is more of a manual process. I do not go into the discussion of which was better (SLPDA vs OpenSLP) or NetWare vs. OES2. The main point was to answer the question of how do I do this and to get you migrated over as quickly as possible. Please note, that without the ID Transfer option, you will probably want to migrate after hours as you will have to change a lot of server/client settings to use the new IP addresses, and it can take some time for the OES2 OpenSLP to cache the registrations.

My other guides can be found here:

Migrate NetWare SLPDA to OES2 OpenSLP



The main purpose of this document is to list a method that you can use to migrate your NetWare SLPDA setup to OES2 OpenSLP. This question has come up several times in the support forums, and Novell does not have an official migration utility that does this for you. So I am presenting a very basic guide to get you working as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, Novell does not have an updated TID to discuss OpenSLP design recommendation like they do for NetWare (that is TID #7002120). As such, I'm going to assume that your NetWare SLPDA environment is setup/configured similar to that TID. I do not know if OpenSLP has the same limitations (ie, no more than 2 DA, etc.). Lastly, this document is NOT meant to be a discussion of which protocol/implementation was better (SLPDA vs. OpenSLP).


I assume the following scenario/setup for your NetWare environment.

  • You have TWO NetWare SLPDA configured and that each server points to each other in their slp.cfg file (see the TID referenced above)

  • You have created a named SCOPE (vs. an UNSCOPED Scope).

  • You are using SLP v2 on NetWare 6.5.8 and your Novell Clients are configured to use that same version

  • You are deploying your DA settings to your Novell Clients via some method (DHCP, manually via registry key pushes, etc.)

  • Your Novell Clients are using SVR-1 as their first DA and SVR-2 as their second DA.

I assume the following scenario/setup for your OES2 servers:

  • You are using OES2 SP2 or SP3 (which is built upon SLES 10 SP3) AND you have the latest SLES 10 SP3 patches. This is because the slp options we wish to use are in the SLES 10 SP3 patches.

Our NetWare environment is as follows:


SVR-1 will be our first SLPDA and SVR-2 will be our second DA.

Our NAMED SCOPE is called:

Our OES2 environment is as follows:


Scenario 1 – Existing OES2 servers

In this scenario, you have an EXISTING OES2 server. (as opposed to you are installing a brand new OES2 SP3 server from scratch). In this scenario, you MAY have upgraded from OES2 SP1 to OES2 SP2 and as such, the /etc/slp.conf may not have the new settings that we need. (You can manually type them in).

This also assumes that we are not doing an ID Transfer, but rather you simply wish to migrate your SLPDA to an OES2 SP2/SP3 server and have it behave as close as possible.

Let's start

We're going to migrate NW-SVR-1 SLPDA to OES-SVR-1 and NW-SVR-2 SLPDA to OESSVR-2.

Use any text editor you wish to look at the /etc/slp.conf file on your OES2 server. We are interested in these 4 lines (they may be in any order, so you'll have to look for them). For my own sanity sake, I like to put these lines at the very BOTTOM of the /etc/slp.cfg file. If you do that, just make sure that your EXISTING /etc/slp.conf file does not already have these defined (or you MOVE them to the bottom). However, if you have changed any of your NetWare settings (for example, the slp MTU size), you want to get these over to your OpenSLP slp.conf file as well.

net.slp.isDA = true
net.slp.useScopes = myScope1
net.slp.dasyncreg = true
slp.DAaddresses = IP_address_1,IP_address_2
net.slp.DABackupInterval = 900
net.slp.DASyncReg = true

So the first setting, we want to be set to: true (yes, this IS going to be a DA)

For the second line, change the: my Scope1 to match your "old" NetWare Scope. In this example, we're going to use: ORG_SCOPE

For the third line, set the value to "true". This is similar to the NetWare setup where you pointed each DA to each OTHER.

For the fourth item, input the IP's of your DA. These can be NetWare DA or another OES2 OpenSLP DA. I'm also pointed it to itself (I've no official information from Novell that says this is good or bad to do this, but I've not had any problems with this setup).

The last two items are what lets OpenSLP "cache" (for lack of a better word), the SLP registrations. Since OpenSLP does not use eDir, without these settings, if you restart ndsd, your OpenSLP server will come up with an empty list of registrations and your Novell Clients will fail to access services via SLP.

net.slp.isDA = true
net.slp.useScopes = ORG_SCOPE
net.slp.dasyncreg = true
slp.DAaddresses =,
net.slp.DABackupInterval = 900
net.slp.DASyncReg = true

(remember we've only done the FIRST server so far).

Save the file.

Now, on the OES2 server (if this is a production server that's serving up files, etc. you may wish to do this off-hours as restarting ndsd can be disruptive), issue these commands:

rcslpd restart
rcndsd restart

(this assumes the OES2 server has eDir on it).

I would personally wait an hour after this for the OpenSLP cache to build and get the list of your services. This will build the cache on the OES2 server for OpenSLP.

Unload the NetWare SLPDA from NW-SVR-1.

Edit the NW-SVR-2 slp.cfg file so that it points to the IP now (because we shut off the SLPDA on NW-SVR-1).

On the NetWare NW-SVR-2, issue an:

And now test with your Novell Clients to make sure they can resolve names and map drives properly.

Now, since we CHANGED IP addresses so that our new DA setup is: (DA #1)
And (DA #2)

You'll need to adjust all your NetWare and OES2 servers, AND your Novell Clients so that they use and instead of the "old" IP of

That's another reason why I like the ID Transfer option (don't have to change the IP's, etc.).

Assuming all works well, repeat the above process but for NW-SVR-2 and OES-SVR-2 and change the IP's accordingly.

Verify OpenSLP DA functionality

One question also comes up frequently:

How do I verify that it's up and working? On NetWare I could type:

Novell's docs have the answer to this one:

  • Enter the following commands to verify that the DA and scopes you configured are recognized.slptool findsrvs service:

    The DA server should be listed.

    slptool findscopes

    The scopes should be listed.

  • If you did this after installing OES 2, enter the following to verify that the tree is found:slptool findsrvs service:ndap.novell

Scenario 2 - Install new OES2 SP3 server

In this case, when you install a brand new OES2 SP3 server, during the installation, you can configure some of these settings (they will then be written to the /etc/slp.conf file).

During the install, you'll get an NTP/SLP configuration screen. In this example, let's pretend I'm install OES-SVR-1 from scratch:

I input my time server, and then I want to select the: Configure as Directory Agent button. This will un-grey out the next 3 options. Check the box for DASyncReg, and you can leave the "Backup SLP Registration" and interval times alone. Fill in the proper scope name, and the DA's.

When you're done with your installation, verify that your /etc/slp.conf file has the proper settings. Refer to Scenario 1. Remember, the lines we wanted to change may be interspersed in the file. I personally like to move them into one section so I can adjust them more easily if necessary.

Also, remember that if you are REPLACING your NetWare server with this new OES2 server, that you're going to have to change the DA settings on ALL your existing NetWare/OES2
servers AND your Novell Clients (or anything else using the old NetWare SLPDA).

Lastly, remember that if your NetWare server had OTHER settings changed (ie, the MTU size for SLP) to ALSO make that change on the /etc/slp.conf file.

Scenario 3 – Use the ID Transfer option for OES2 SP3

This is the option I did for my second DA server. You can use my guides for installing OES2 SP2 (A few screens will be different for SP3). The key points to remember for that scenario:

Make sure you select the Pre-Migration pattern during the install.

And it really doesn't matter what you put for the SLP section, since AFTER the ID transfer, we're going to change the /etc/slp.conf file manually anyway.

The main benefit to this is that your OES2 server now gets the same name and IP of your old NetWare server so that you don't have to go around changing the IP of the DA for your existing servers and Novell Clients.

Lastly, remember that if your NetWare server had OTHER settings changed (ie, the MTU size for SLP) to ALSO make that change on the /etc/slp.conf file.


How To-Best Practice
Comment List
  • The article assumes you are migrating from NetWare to OES2 and to answer a question that shows up repeatedly in the forums.

    While I'm pretty sure I covered the reasons for not getting into the battle of which is better and why, here's a link to Novell's documentation explaining the differences:


  • This article assumes that one has made the decision that this is "the" thing to do.
    What would make the article better would be to include all the information that allows one to compare what SLP provided under Netware to what is provided by OpenSLP run on OES2 Linux.

    Unless of course we are simply doing it because Attachmate / Novell says we have to and we take it or leave it.
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