SUMMARY: NIS+ in a heterogenous environment

From: martha.crocker (
Date: Wed Dec 17 1997 - 10:38:07 CST

On my original questions about NIS+ implementation in a heterogenous

My environment:
> We currently have a mix of machines running SunOS 4.1.3, 4.1.4;
> Solaris 2.5.1, 2.6; HP-UX 9.05, 9.07, 10.01, 10.20; ULTRIX 4.4
> and OSF/1 v 1.3 and v 3.0 (Alphas)
> We are looking at going to Solaris 2.6 on all our Sun boxes except
> four which must stay at SunOS 4.1.3 due to the software running
> on them.
> We are currently running NIS and DNS. Master and slave servers
> are all SunOS machines except one NIS slave running Solaris 2.5.1
> and one Auspex serving as a secondary DNS server.

Thank yous go to:

David Schiffrin <>
Joel Lee <>
"Robert Glover" <>
Glenn Satchell - Uniq Professional Services <>
Dan Brainard <>

for their Answers to my questions:

>1) Will I have to use NIS+, or can I still just use NIS?

No. Solaris 2.6 ships with NIS, unlike Solaris 2.5.1.
        NIS+ compatability mode could be used if desired.

>2) If I have to use NIS+, are the other OS's listed above able
> to run the client software? or do I have to use
> NIS compatability mode to continue to server them under
> NIS?
In my case, my two options are in #1 above. HP-UX won't support
NIS+ until 11.x and there is no sign of support from ULTRIX and
OSF/1 as of yet.

>3) If I can still use just regular old NIS, how long will this
> be supported by Sun?

Looks good for support from Sun for NIS because of it's popularity
and ability to work with all the other OS's.

>4) What are some problems encountered by people who have similar
> environments in implementing such a change to either
> NIS+, NIS+ with compatability mode, or regular NIS under
> Solaris 2.6?

NIS+ is difficult to learn and implement, but a good product.
The use of compatability mode diminishes NIS+ security. There are
some sticky issues related to compatability mode. These are
available reading the manuals, which can be found on the web
at under Network Software and then
Solaris 2.6 System Administrator Collection Vol. 1. I had actually
read these, but Sun doesn't tend to comment on environments other
than homogenous Solaris environments. This documentation is very
good, however. It's nice to have it on the web.

I've decided to go with using straight NIS until we get all
machines running NIS+ compatable OS versions. This may be quite
a ways in the future, but I don't see a point in running a
mix of NIS and NIS+ unless we are in transition between the
two. We are currently not in need of the added security features
in NIS+.

Thanks again!


Martha Crocker
UNIX System Administrator
VLSI Technology, Inc.
9651 Westover Hills Blvd.
M/S  306
San Antonio, Texas  78251

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