Howto: Mount a Windows share on SLES linux using cifs

This post is mainly for my own benefit.  I mount Windows shares on my SuSE linux box so infrequently, I have to dig through past notes to remind myself what the syntax is.

To mount a Windows share on SLES linux using cifs:

mount -t cifs -o username=jsmith //po5/gwdompri /mnt/po5/gwdompri

  • jsmith is the user account to authenticate as
  • //po5/gwdompri is the Windows server and share you wish to mount
  • /mnt/po5/gwdompri is the location to mount the share, or where you access it on the local Linux box.
  •  you will be prompted for the password 
  • /mnt/po5/gwdompri must exist

Fix for make install / compiler issues with Intel e1000 NIC driver in SLES 10

How I was able to make and install the Intel e1000 NIC driver in SLES 10 Linux:

Steps 1 through 3 of the e1000-8.0.6.tar.gz readme file are simple enough to follow when making the Intel e1000 network card driver on SLES 10 SP2.  
1. Move the base driver tar file to the directory of your choice.  For example, /usr/local/src/e1000
2. From a terminal prompt, untar archive:
    tar zxf e1000-8.0.6.tar.gz
3. Change to the driver src directory:
    cd e1000-8.0.6/src/
Step 4 was where I started having problems
4.  make install
should have compiled the driver module.  Instead, I received the following error:
Linux kernel source not found in any of these locations:
*** Install the appropriate kernel development package, e.g.
*** kernel-devel, for building kernel modules and try again. Stop.
I opened YaST and searched for kernel-devel, but that package was not listed.  I did see a kernel-source package, which I installed.  I then ran make install again, and this time I received a different error message:
Makefile:131: *** Compiler not found.  Stop.
I went back into YaST, installed the gcc compiler, which added glibc-devel and libmudflap packages as dependencies, and ran make install once again.  This time it compiled successfully.
The binary was installed as /lib/modules/
5.  Make sure to remove any older existing drivers before loading the new driver:
rmmod e1000
6.  The module was then loaded using the following syntax:
insmod /lib/modules/
Once you assign an IP address, you should be able to use the interface.

Howto: Minimize all Windows and show the Desktop in SLES Linux

On my Windows machines I frequently use the Windows Key + D shortcut to minimize all open Windows to quickly access the desktop.  I had been meaning to find the equivalent key combination in SuSE Linux Server Enterprise 10’s Gnome desktop, and finally found out how to do it yesterday.

The shortcut key combination to minimize all open Windows and view the desktop is CTRL+ALT+D

Howto: Determine the version of SLES Linux

To determine the version of SuSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES), type the following in a terminal window:

cat /etc/SuSE-release



To determine which kernel version is in use, type the following in a terminal window:

rpm -qf /boot/vmlinuz

Posted in Linux. Tags: , . 3 Comments »

Ubuntu 8.10 Alpha 4 now available as VMware Virtual Appliance

Ubuntu 8.10 Alpha 4 is now available as a VMware Virtual Appliance free download.

The fourth alpha release of Ubuntu 8.10 “Intrepid Ibex” is ready for testing.

New features:

  • X.Org server 1.5 brings much better support for hot-plugable input devices such as tablets, keyboards, or mice
  • Linux kernel 2.6.26
  • encrypted private directory
  • guest session – the GNOME user switching applet now provides an extra entry for starting a guest session, this creates a temporary password-less user account with restricted privileges
  • Network Manager 0.7 which comes with long-expected features, such as managing system-wide settings, 3G connections (GSM/CDMA.), multiple active devices, PPP and PPPoE connections, devices with static IP configurations, routes for devices.

Last updated: 08/25/2008

Howto: Mount a USB device in SuSE Linux

I have a Kingston USB flash drive that does not automatically mount itself on my SLES server on occasion.  TID 7000951 explains how to mount the drive manually:

1) From a terminal, run:

lsmod |grep usb  make sure usb_storage is loaded.  If it is not, run:

modprobe usb-storage

2) Plug the USB device in and run dmesg.  The results will look like:

USB Mass Storage support registered.
scsi 6:0:0:0: Direct-Access CRUCIAL USB Flash Disk 2.00 PQ: 0 ANSI: 2
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] 1017856 512-byte hardware sectors (521 MB)
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Write Protect is off
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Mode Sense: 03 00 00 00
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Assuming drive cache: write through
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] 1017856 512-byte hardware sectors (521 MB)
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Write Protect is off
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Mode Sense: 03 00 00 00
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Assuming drive cache: write through
sd 6:0:0:0: [sdd] Attached SCSI removable disk
sd 6:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg4 type 0
usb-storage: device scan complete

Look for the kernel device name, in this case, /dev/sdd, with a partition on /dev/sdd1

3) Mount volume manually by running:

mount /dev/sdd1 /mnt

Access the USB drive at /mnt

To unmount the USB drive run:

umount /mnt

Posted in howto, Linux. Tags: , , , . 4 Comments »

ConsoleOne error on SLES 10 SP2: Can’t find Java

So, the other day I wrote about my Java errors I experienced when trying to load VNC in Firefox on a brand new SuSE 10 SP2 server.  Today brought about a new Java error after I installed ConsoleOne 1.3.6f on the
same SLES 10 SP2 servers. I  received the following message while trying to start up ConsoleOne for the first time:

no java found

I figured it had to do with me not using the version of Java that shipped with C1.  Here’s what I did to fix the problem:

1) Browse to the /usr/ConsoleOne/bin/ConsoleOne file and right click on it.
2) Select the Permissions tab, and give Owner write access
3) Edit the /usr/ConsoleOne/bin/ConsoleOne file with gedit
4) Add the following line that points to our java installation directory:
export C1_JRE_HOME=/usr/java/jre1.6.0_07
5) Save the file and exit gedit
6) To run ConsoleOne execute: /usr/ConsoleOne/bin/ConsoleOne

Replace /usr/java/jre1.6.0_07 with the path to your Java installation. 

To the location of your version of Java, run the following from a terminal:
find / -name java

Howto: Fix VNC / Firefox plugin problems on SLES 10 SP2

Yesterday I installed two identical SuSE Linux Enterprise (SLES) 10 SP2 servers on their own private network.  Since this private network was completeky isolated, neither server received any updates or patches.  When I tried to connect from one server to the other through VNC at, I received the following message from Firefox:

Plugin Finder Service Window reports Firefox is now checking for available plugins
Click here to download plugin

I figured Firefox was trying to download the Java browser plugin from the Internet.  I had not installed Java during the base installation, so this is what I did to fix the problem:

1)      Downloaded the most recent version of Java,  1.6.0_07 available from
2)      Copied jre-6u7-linux-i586-rpm.bin to /usr/src/packages/RPMs/i586
3)      Opened a terminal and su root
4)      cd /usr/src/packages/RPMs/i586
5)      Typed chmod a+x jre-6u7-linux-i586-rpm.bin
6)      To start install type  ./ jre-6u7-linux-i586-rpm.bin
7)      Hit the space bar several times to view license agreement
8)      Press y to accept license agreement.  Java will be installed to /usr/java/jre1.6.0_07
9)      Link Java to plugin directory.  To do this type cd /usr/lib/browser-plugins
10)    Type  ln -s /usr/java/jre1.6.0_07/plugin/i386/ns7/

Firefox was then able to see the VNC login screen at

Posted in Linux. Tags: , , , , . 2 Comments »

Howto: Gather troubleshooting information for OES/SLES Linux using Novell’s supportconfig tool

Novell released two new Linux troubleshooting tools this week (See TID 3513679 for details).  One is specific only to NSS volumes on OES clusters, while the other, supportconfig, gathers all types of information about your server.

Getting started with supportconfig is really simple.  Download the rpm, then install it using the following syntax from a terminal session.

rpm -Uvh supportconfig-2.15-20.noarch.rpm

supportconfig’s command line options include:

 Usage: supportconfig [ -h | -ACDdeLlmsv ]

   -h This screen
  -A Activates all supportconfig functions with additional
     logging and full rpm verification.
  -C Creates a new default /etc/sysconfig/supportconfig
  -D Use defaults; ignore  /etc/sysconfig/supportconfig
  -d Exclude detailed disk info and scans
  -e Search root filesystem for eDirectory instances; -L
     implied. Be patient.
  -L Create a full file listing from ‘/’
  -l Gathers additional rotated logs
  -m Only gather a minimum amount of info: basic env, basic health, hardware, rpm, messages,  2logs
  -s Include full SLP service lists
  -v Performs an rpm -V for each installed rpm
     NOTE: This takes a long time to complete

I ran supportconfig -Al on my Sles10 Zenworks server, and ended up with a 2.8MB tarball of information.  Decompressed, it ended up being 48.5MB of text files, 51 files in all.  The amount of information it provided was amazing.  I found novell-edir.txt, ldap.txt, and sysconfig.txt to be of the most value for me personally. Give it a try and see what you find out about your systems.

Howto: Upgrade OES iManager 2.5 to iManager 2.6 SP3 (and fix some nici problems as well)

Novell’s iManager hasn’t worked for me since I freshly installed my Novell Open Enterprise Server (OES) SP2 linux server. When I access http://myserversip/nps (or, I’m presented with the iManager login screen, but when I enter my credentials I receive the following error:

Server Error 500

Either the server is overloaded or there was an error in a CGI script

Most articles and posts I read pointed to tomcat as the culprit. iManager 2.5 has had several security issues, so the recommended action is to upgrade to 2.6, which I had planned on doing some day… just not today.

I didn’t find much information regarding upgrading from iManager 2.5 to 2.6 on OES Linux, so I just decided to wing it , and had to perform a lot of trial and error troubleshooting during the process.

This is how I performed the upgrade:

1) From the Novell Download site, download the version of iManager 2.6 appropriate for your operating system (I selected the Linux version for OES). You will have to login to Novell in order to access the files, if you don’t have a Novell account you can get one here.

2) Change to the directory you saved the iManager file download in. Extract the files using the following syntax: (note it is case sensitive)

tar -zxvf iMan_26_linux.tgz

3) change to the directory where the binary file is located using the following syntax:

cd /iManager/installs/linux

4) To being the setup program, type:


(you can get more detailed information on installing iManager 2.6 here)

5) Select 2 to install in English or select your language of choice

6) Press enter several times, then Y to accept the license agreement

7) Press enter to accept all the default installation options. I would only change these if you really know what you’re doing.

8) Sit back and prepare to wait a while. On my brand new Dell PowerEdge 2950 with 4GB of RAM the install took about 20 minutes. After the install has completed, I suggest you reboot, then verify iManager 2.6 is accessible (default login page is https://yourserverip/nps/iManager.html), but it’s your call. I’m glad I tried, because when I tried to authenticate I received the following error:

Unable to initialize JClient: java.lang.Error: Unable to initialize DClient

TID 10100826 explains the problem has to do with NICI, which doesn’t play nice with Tomcat and makes it so you can’t login any more. This TID says to rename the /var/novell/nici/101 directory and restart tomcat to fix this issue, but I don’t have a 101 directory in /var/novell/nici. I thought maybe the 101 was maybe a subdirectory of some other nici directory, so I searched and found the serveer did have the following nici directories:

/var/opt/novell/nici – contained 8 files and 1 folder named ‘0’ (thats a zero, not a small o)

/opt/novell/oes-install/nici – directory was empty

/opt/novell/oes_install/nici – only contained a ########.nfk file, which is a license file.

So I went ahead and renamed the /var/opt/novell/nici/0 folder to 0.old and restarted tomcat with the following command:

rctomcat restart

I tried to login to iManager again, and I received the same Jclient error shown above.

TID 10077278 said to edit the environment variable found in the file, but I couldn’t find a file on my server (tomcat run just fine, incidently).

I found this post that sets up nici in server rather than client mode. To fix nici, I did:

1) Renamed the /var/opt/novell/nicifk file.

2) Copied my ########.nkf file from /opt/novell/oes_install/nici to the /var/opt/novell directory

3) Renamed my ########.nkf file from step 2 nicifk

4) Assigned the same rights to the new nicifk file that the old nicifk file had, which were -r-xr-xr-x. To do this, I typed:

chmod 555 nicifk

5) From the /var/opt/novell/ directory I tried to regenerate the ‘0’ directory by running primenici, but I received the following error:

Initializing NICI… sh: line 1: /var/novell/nici/nicimud: No such file or directory

failed, error -1497

To fix the error -1497, I found this post which talks about creating soft links to nici folders because of an eDirectory 8.8 upgrade (which we don’t use, all servers are still on eDir 8.7.3). To fix this particular nici error, I typed:

ln -sf /var/opt/novell/nici /var/novell/nici



and the ‘0’ directory was recreated for me! I felt like I was finally getting somewhere!

To restart tomcat, I typed:

rctomcat restart

then tried to login to iManager again, but to my dismay, still experienced the Jclient/Dclient error.

So I rebooted the server and went to get some lunch. When I tried to access iManager again, I received a different error:

NDS Error -626

(Error -626) The object could not be found. It is possible that the object exists, but the server could not communicate with the server holding a copy of the object.

This error sounded like it could be fixed by adding a replica to the OES server, and since I was planning on doing it eventually anyway, I used ConsoleOne to create a read only replica.

I waited for the Current Sync Error condition to change to No Error in C1’s replica information screen, then restarted tomcat. I held my breath as I attempted to login to iManager 2.6 (no SP), and it worked! I rebooted the server once again just to make sure it was really working, and once again I logged in without problems!

Once your iManager has been upgraded from 2.5 to 2.6, we can apply iManager 2.6 SP3, which is the most recent update as of June 27, 2007. Go download iManager Support Pack 3. Once again, you have to login to your Novell account to get this update.

To decompress the support pack, type:

tar -zxvf iman26sp3.tgz

Follow these directions to install iManager SP3. Please note, you need to have this support pack installed to have support for the Internet Explorer 7 and Firefox 2.0 browsers, so for be results, do the installation from IE6 or Firefox 1.5.x.

Don’t forget to restart tomcat after you complete the update to SP3. I suggest restarting the entire server if you can get away with it.


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