--- Sjoerd Hooft's InFormation Technology ---

User Tools

Site Tools


Recently Changed Pages:

View All Pages

View All Tags


WIKI Disclaimer: As with most other things on the Internet, the content on this wiki is not supported. It was contributed by me and is published “as is”. It has worked for me, and might work for you.
Also note that any view or statement expressed anywhere on this site are strictly mine and not the opinions or views of my employer.

Pages with comments

View All Comments


eDirectory 8.8.1 Upgrade

This is a small reference on what to do and think about when you're upgrading an eDirectory 8.7.3.x environment to 8.8.x. The upgrade done is to 8.8.1 with field patch 2 already included in the installation source. All the mentioned issues and reminders are probably valid for 8.8.2 and 8.8.3 as well. Covered items are:

  • Before the upgrade
    • The readme
    • The compatibility list
    • Creating the installation source
    • Startx preparations
  • The upgrade
  • After the upgrade
    • Autoexec.ncf
    • Backlinker
    • Testing
  • Redo the upgrade

The software that is used is the downloaded version of eDirectory 8.8.1 Final edition. That is an ISO which is extracted to the server's SYS volume in a directory called edir881.

Download eDirectory 8.8.1 Final Edition
Download eDirectory 8.8.2
Download eDirectory 8.8.3

Before The Upgrade

The Readme

There are a couple of documents you have to read before performing an upgrade. This is not a joke. You HAVE TO read these documents. Why? Because they tell what will go wrong before they go wrong. So maybe you can prevent these problems. The documents you have to read are:

  1. Documentation regarding the upgrade
  2. The readme of the support pack / product
    1. edir881\nw\install\nls\4\nwreadme.txt
  3. The readme's of any additional patches you plan to install

Some things that will definitely come out of the readme and documentation are these adjustments:

  • Edit c:\nwserver\startup.ncf and add the following line to the file:
  • Remark all products you don't need during the upgrade out in the autoexec.ncf file. That is including ZENworks, iManager, groupwise, backup, antivirus etc. Reboot the server before you do the actual upgrade.

Compatibility List

Because eDirectory 8.8 has a some big changes it might be that not all of your products are compatible. Which means that maybe not all of your software will work after you upgrade. To be sure read this list carefully: eDirectory compatibility list.

Creating The Installation Source

After you've downloaded the software mount the ISO and copy the installation files to the root of the SYS volume. Create an easy to remember directory (i.e. edir881) and place all files directly beneath this directory. If you have downloaded additional patches like the FTF2 patch, you can manually add the files to the installation source. Most of the times you'll have to copy the files to the edir881\nw\sys\system directory. Remember not to copy over the old files, but to rename them first.

Startx Preparations

Because the upgrade is partly in the graphical environment, it might be wise to rename the SYS\NI\update directory to SYS\NI\update.old and create a new one. Installation files get stored in this directory and should be upgraded when newer files are used. This is however, not working flawlessly. So just create a new and empty update directory.

The Upgrade

  1. At the server console, enter nwconfig.nlm.
  2. Select Product Options > Install a Product Not Listed.
  3. Press F3 and specify the path to the NW directory where the installation program can find the nds8.ips file.
    1. sys:\edir881\nw
  4. Follow the on-screen prompts concerning license agreements, the Readme file, and tips.
  5. Enter the administrator's login name (for example, Admin.Shift) and password.
  6. In the LDAP Configuration screen, specify which LDAP ports to use, then click Next.
  7. Select the NMAS login method you want to install, then click Next.
  8. Click Finish to start the eDirectory installation.
  9. To complete the installation, remove any diskettes or CDs when prompted, then click Yes to restart the server.

Note that during the upgrade you can choose to perform a health check and that the server will be rebooted a couple of times. Also note that part of the installation will be done in the graphical environment. Halfway you'll be asked if you perform the upgrade local or remote. When answered local the graphical environment starts and you'll have to give some input on NMAS methods you want to use. When answered remote the graphical environment still starts but assumes all defaull values. No user interaction is required.

DIB Rewrite

Please be aware that the dib is being rewrited during the upgrade, which looks a little bit like this:
Also be aware that this process in irreversible. You can't re-rewrite the dib back to 8.7.3.x format. Your only way out if you've screwed things up is removing eDirectory from the server and then reinstalling eDirectory. I don't think you'll be happy when you have to do this. In case you'll ever see yourself facing this challenge, this is a nice place to start.

After The Upgrade


If you've listened to the tips in this article you'll have your products like groupwise and ZENworks remarked out on the server. You should un-out-remark these products in your autoexec.ncf, after which you can reboot the server for the last time to make sure everything still works properly.

From the eDirectory documentation:

  • Because the internal eDirectory identifiers change when upgrading to Novell eDirectory, the backlink process must update backlinked objects for them to be consistent. Backlinks keep track of external references to objects on other servers. For each external reference on a server, the backlink process ensures that the real object exists in the correct location and verifies all backlink attributes on the master of the replica. The backlink process occurs two hours after the database is open and then every 780 minutes (13 hours). The interval is configurable from 2 minutes to 10,080 minutes (7 days). After migrating to eDirectory, we recommend that you force the backlink to run by issuing the following commands from the server console. Running the backlink process is especially important on servers that do not contain a replica.
  • At the server console, enter set dstrace=on.
  • Enter set dstrace=+blink.
  • Enter set dstrace=*b.
  • When the process is complete, enter set dstrace=off.


Make sure to test all of your products afterwards. Test your NAL, incoming and outgoing email, groupwise webaccess, dirxml/idm, internet access, login etc.

Redo The Upgrade

If for some reason the upgrade fails, you'll have to redo the upgrade. If the upgrade fails during the graphical part of the installation you might find that all the modules are updated. Well, not all of them and you haven't configured the NMAS methods yet. So you still have to do a reinstall. But if you try to start the reinstall you'll receive the message that eDirectory is already installed, and if you want to install another language. Turns out that your products.dat already has an entry for eDirectory. To remove this entry you can use the following command:

uinstall edir

The name edir is the name you can find by going into nwconfig, and then view the products installed. After this you can reinstall the product.

You could leave a comment if you were logged in.
edirectory881upgrade.txt · Last modified: 2021/09/23 22:24 (external edit)