v2r1profiles

v2r1profiles
Configuration Files Overview
Network Station Education
IBM Network Computer Division
June 1999
01/31/00 v2r1profiles.prz
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Course
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1
Objectives/Contents
V1R3 vs. V2R1 Configuration Files
Terminology
V2R1 Profiles and location
Profiles Hierarchy
Command Line Interface
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Notes
The topic of this presentation is the Network Station Manager Configuration Profiles.
The objective of this topic is to provide a brief overview of the new V2R1 configuration
profiles that have replaced the V1R3 configuration files.
These configuration profiles are managed directly by the Network Station Manager
applications and there are even less reasons today to work directly with these files.
However, it is essential that an administrator understand what these files are and how they
work for cases where there is a need to do some customization that is otherwise not
available through other tools.
We take a look at the difference with V1R3, some terminology, the different profiles and
their hierarchy as well as the new command line interface to make batch or interactive
changes to the configuration profiles.
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NSM V1R3 and NSM V2R1
In NSM V1R3
Upwards of 45 configuration files
Many different formats
Located in some 15 or more subdirectories
In NSM V2R1
Only 10 files
(profiles)
Only one format
(XML)
One directory and 3
subdirectories
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Notes
The configuration files in V2R1 has been significantly simplified by reducing the number of
files to just a few and by using a single common format.
These files are now called configuration profiles and they all reside in a single directory
under ...userbase/profiles.
This chart shows that particular directory on a Windows NT system, along with its three
subdirectories:
The profiles that are applicable to all users and all stations, as well as the shipped defaults
reside in the main directory /userbase/profiles
Then there is one directory each for the group profiles, the individual user profiles and the
individual unit (Network Station) profiles.
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Terminology
Download Profile
One of several configuration files that replace the NSM V1R3 configuration
files.
XML
Extended Markup Language. An industry standard tag language used to
define custom layouts that can be parsed by standard utilities. Download
profiles are XML files.
Override File
Similar to the V1R3 backdoor file. Provides a mechanism for setting
configuration preferences outside of using NSM. Architected in V2R1 but
disabled in the initial release.
Network Station Registry
Repository on the client (Network Station) where the configuration parameters
obtained from the download profiles are stored for access by local services
and applications.
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Notes
There are some new terms to be learned when talking about these new profiles, so here is
a short terminology on the important ones.
Download Profile is the new term for a configuration file
Extended Markup Language (XML) is an industry standard tag language used to define
custom layouts that can be parsed by standard utilities. Download profiles are all XML files.
An Override File is similar to the V1R3 backdoor file and it provides a mechanism for
setting configuration preferences outside of NSM. These however should seldom be
needed, especially since there is another tool called NSMCL that can be used to work with
these files.
The Network Station Registry is a repository on the Network Station where the
configuration parameters obtained from the download profiles are stored for access by
local services and applications.
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NSM V2R1 Profiles
Shipped Profile
System Profile
NCProfile
Profile
NC
NC
Profiles
NC Overrides
Allusers Profile
Group Profiles
User Profiles
Session Overrides
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Notes
There are different ways to look at these profiles or to categorize these profiles dependent
on the particular aspect that we are looking at.
One way, when discussing downloading of the profiles, is to group them in two groups:
Those profiles that are download before the user logs in
Those that are downloaded after the user logs in
which is what we have represented here.
In other words, the shipped settings, the system settings that apply to all stations and the
individual unit settings are profiles downloaded before the user login panel is presented.
After the login, since the system now is aware of who the user is, the all users, group and
individual user profiles are then downloaded.
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Download Profile Names and Path
Shipped Profile
Userbase/profiles/shipped.nsm
System Profile
Userbase/profiles/allncs.nsm
NCProfile
Profile
NC
NC
Profiles
Userbase/profiles/ncs/<ncid>.nsm
NC Overrides
Userbase/profiles/ncs/<ncid>.ovr
Allusers Profile
Userbase/profiles/allusers.nsm
Group Profiles
User Profiles
Session Overrides
Userbase/profiles/groups/<group>.nsm
Userbase/profiles/users/<user>.nsm
Userbase/profiles/allusers.ovr
Userbase/profiles/groups/<group>.ovr
Userbase/profiles/users/<user>.ovr
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Notes
This chart looks at the same groups of profiles and identifies the actual location where
these profiles are stored.
Notice that there are also override profiles listed, which we have not discussed yet.
These override profiles are similar to the backdoor files in V1R3 and are to be used for
settings parameters that cannot be set through the NSM GUI interface.
However, since there is now a command line interface available to set or make changes to
any setting, there should really be no need to use the override files except in very special
cases.
In fact, these override files are disabled by default and have been architected into the
product mainly for backwards compatibility reasons.
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Authentication/Configuration Server
Authentication/Configuration Server
Network Station
Manager
Web Server
File System
CGI-Bin
Command
Line Interface
Download Profiles
Shipped Profile
System Profile
NCProfile
Profile
NC
NC
Profiles
Kiosk
Templates
NC Overrides
Allusers Profile
Group Profiles
User Profiles
Session Overrides
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Notes
The download profiles are managed and manipulated by two entities:
Either the administrator uses the Network Station Manager's Graphical Interface, which
causes a set of CGI-bin programs to make the required additions and changes to the
profiles
Or the administrator uses the command line interface tool to make similar changes.
These profiles should never be altered manually. If a special situation requires manual
changes to a profile, then the manual change should be made to an override profile.
This chart also shows an element called Kiosk templates. These are special profiles to
operate the station in kiosk mode and we provide additional information in the kiosk
presentation.
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Profiles Hierarchy
es
rrid
ove
Shipped Settings
shipped.nsm
NC Specific
<ncid.nsm>
NC Specific Override
<ncid.ovr>
All Users overrides
allusers.ovr
Group
<group.nsm>
Group overrides
<group.ovr>
es
rrid
ove
All Terminals
allncs.nsm
All Users
allusers.nsm
User
<user.nsm>
User overrides
<user.ovr>
NC Profiles
Session
Profiles
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Notes
As was the case in the previous release, the settings in the configuration profiles are
processed in a specific order.
Some settings are additive, meaning that the total number of settings that the user finally
gets is the sum of all the settings. For example, if each of three profiles each add an icon
to the launchbar, the result will be that all three icons will appear on the launchbar.
Other settings are mutually exclusive, meaning that whatever setting is processed last is
the setting that will be in effect when the desktop appears.
This chart separates the profiles into two groups:
The NC profiles, which contain settings related to the unit
The session profiles, which contain settings related to the user or group.
The shipped setting are somewhat separate but can probably be categorized with the NC
profiles.
This chart shows the order of precedence for the mutually exclusive settings. If a setting is
specified at the user level, it take precedence over all previous values specifies for that
particular setting.
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Downloading Profiles
Network Station
Desktop
Auth. Server
Applications
Netscape
Shipped Profile
System Profile
NCProfile
Profile
NC
NC
Profiles
NC Overrides
Login
Client
NVRAM
Loader
Cfg. Server
Allusers Profile
Group Profiles
Registry
Registry
Daemon
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User Profiles
Session Overrides
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Notes
In V2R1, the Registry is the one central place on the station where configuration
parameters are stored and all components and applications access the registry to get
configuration parameters.
The Registry Daemon is therefore the only component responsible for downloading
configuration profiles.
This chart shows that the Registry daemon downloads the configuration profiles from the
configuration server during the initial boot sequence, and after the user logs in, it
downloads the session configuration profiles from the authentication server.
Applications then get their configuration parameters from the Registry as required.
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Sample Download Profile
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE NCREGISTRY SYSTEM "registry.dtd" >
<NCREGISTRY VERSION="1.0">
<OBJECT NAME="/config">
<CATEGORY NAME="WORKSTATION">
<PROPERTY NAME="xserver-keyboard-type">5</PROPERTY>
<PROPERTY NAME="pref-screensaver-enable">true</PROPERTY>
<PROPERTY NAME="pref-screensaver-time">60</PROPERTY>
</CATEGORY>
</OBJECT>
</NCREGISTRY>
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Notes
Here is an example of a download profile.
As shown, this is very similar to HTML format, only with different tags.
One can easily recognize that the parameter xserver-keyboard-type is set to the value 5
and that the pref-screesaver-enable is set to true, etc.
These configuration settings (actually property names) are part of the workstation category
which is part of the config object.
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Special Configuration Variables
Variable
Description
Values
Default
Setting
NSM_ALLOW_OVERRIDES
Indicates if override profiles
are allowed
ENABLE
DISABLE
DISABLE
NSM_NC_NAME_TYPE
Indicates the type of file
name used for a specific
Network Station
configuration
IP Address
ANY
MAC Address
IP Host Name
ANY
NSM_ACCESS_NC_CONFIG
Indicates if terminal level
configuration is used
ENABLE
DISABLE
ENABLE
NSM_ACCESS_GROUP_CONFIG
Indicates if group level
configuration is used
ENABLE
DISABLE
ENABLE
NSM_ACCESS_USER_CONFIG
Indicates if user level
configuration is used
ENABLE
DISABLE
ENABLE
These variables are initially set in the shipped profile
They can only be changed using the Command Line Interface
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Notes
This table identifies some special configuration variables that are initially set in the
shipped.nsm file and that can be changed, if need be, using the command line interface.
The first one is the variable that controls whether override profiles are allowed or not. By
default, this is set to disable.
The second one allows to specify the type of identifier that is to be used for the unit's
filename. If any is used, all three possibilities will be tried in sequence.
Finally, the last three allow the disabling of a particular level of settings. For example, if
group settings are never used, this variable is used to indicate that the system should not
be looking for group related profiles, thereby increasing the efficiency of the download
profiles processing.
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NSM Command Line Interface
Utility (written in Java) to make batch changes directly to the
XML-based download profiles (NSMCL)
User interface; choice of:
Interactive GUI interface
Run from the command line
Configuration change commands; choice of:
Run individually
Run script files containing many commands
Scripting language is SGML (Standard General Configuration
Language)
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Notes
The Network Station Manager Command Line interface (abbreviated NSMCL) is a utility
written in Java to make batch changes directly to the XML-based download profiles.
The user actually has the choice of two interfaces;
Configuration commands can be run directly from the command line
Or the user can use a graphical interface to enter the configuration commands
In addition, configuration change commands can be issued individually or a script file
containing many commands can be specified as the input file.
The scripting language used is SGML (Standard General Configuration Language) Text.
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The ../servbase/tools Directory
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Notes
The NSMCL components reside in the servbase/tools directory, as illustrated on this chart.
The jar files contain the Java classes required by the NSMCL tool.
The SGCL.ini file contains the configuration settings required by the NSMCL tool.
The SGCL_log.txt file is the operational log resulting from running SGCL commands.
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NSMCL GUI Interface Panel
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Notes
This chart shows the NSMCL graphical interface that allows individual commands to be
entered and executed.
Commands are entered on the top line and the results of executing the commands are
displayed in the lower window. This is a great advantage when testing because the results
can be monitored immediately instead of having to display the log file.
Commands are saved to the clipboard and can therefore be easily recalled for execution
or editing.
Notice the HELP button as well that can be used to look up the syntax of the available
commands.
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NSMCL Clipboard
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Notes
This chart illustrates the clipboard where previous NSMCL commands are stored.
Commands can be selected from the clipboard and pasted back into the NSMCL
command line.
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NSMCL Command Syntax
command ibmnsm/level/name/category/configname/ configvalue
system
workstation
usergroup
user
Update
Insert
Delete
Select
Copy
Call
Commit
Rollback
Set
Exec
Change existing settings
Creates new or change settings
Deletes existing settings
Returns existing settings
Copies settings
Runs script files
Writes all pending (since last commit) changes to disk
Discards all pending (since last commit) changes
Temporarily sets any value in the SGCL.INI file
Runs a native operating system command in the operating system
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Notes
This chart summarizes the syntax of the most commands (but not all) for NSMCL.
The available commands are listed here, along with their description.
The first parameter after the command is always IBMSNM.
Then the level is one of four possible values, as shown here.
Then the name parameter can be a group name, or a user name or it can be default when
it concerns a system value applicable to all.
Then the category is one of many, that are too numerous to list here but that can be found
in the Advanced User Information publication on the web.
This is true as well of all the configname which is the list of all possible parameters.
The last parameter is the value of the setting.
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NSMCL Usage Examples
INSERT IBMNSM/WORKSTATION/9.24.104.192/EXTERNAL/
ip-address-at-next-boot/ 9.24.105.6
COMMIT
INSERT IBMNSM/SYSTEM/DEFAULT/USERGROUP/claude/ Sales_Local
COMMIT
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Notes
Here are a couple of examples just to demonstrate how this works.
The first example sets the parameter ip-address-at-next-boot to the value 9.24.105.6 for
the specific workstation whose IP address is 9.24.104.192.
So in this case, the level that we are working at is the workstation level, the name of the
workstation is 9.24.104.192, the category to which this particular parameter belongs to is
called EXTERNAL and the parameter is called ip-address-at-next-boot.
When this command (or more than one command) is executed, the results are not actually
written permanently into the configuration profile until the COMMIT command is issued.
And before a commit is issued, it is still possible to backout of the previously issued
commands.
The second example makes the user called claude part of the Sales_local group. In this
case, notice that this particular command is actually done at the system level even though
this is setting a group name for a user.
Instead of being issued individually, these commands can also be entered into a script file
and the script file executed. For example, if there were 300 users to be made part of the
sales_local group, you would simply create a file with 300 statements similar to this last
example, one for each user, and run the script once, followed by a commit.
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Where to Go for More Information
Main Web Site
www.ibm.com/nc
Current Network Station Redbook
SG24-5844 Network Station Manager V2R1 Guide
Previous Network Station Redbooks
SG24-5187 AS/400 - Techniques for Deployment in a WAN
SG24-5221 Windows NT - NSM Release 3
SG24-5212 Printing
SG24-2127 Windows NT/WinCenter
SG24-4954 S/390, SG24-2016 RS/6000, SG24-2153 AS/400
Product Publications
SC41-0684 Installing NSM for AS/400
SC41-0685 Installing NSM for RS/6000
SC41-0688 Installing NSM for Windows NT
SC41-0690 Using NSM
IBM Network Station Advanced Information (On the Web Site)
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Notes
More detailed information can be found at these sites and publications, in particular in the
SG24-5844 redbook and in the Advanced User Information document available on the
Web.
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