SUMMARY: Sunlink DNI troubles

From: Bill Hanlon (
Date: Mon Jan 10 1994 - 17:48:01 CST

SUMMARY: Sunlink DNI troubles


> While transferring files from a VAX/VMS system to a Sparc 2, the dni software
> will often get into an odd state and return the nfars error: NF_EINAPPOP,
> "inappropriate operation". Once in this state the software cannot recover,
> and any subsequent dni commands return this same error.

> Stopping and restarting DNI does not help. Rebooting the Sparcstation
> does help; the dni software will then work normally for a while. This
> happens about once per day or so.

> The systems are Sparc 2, SunOS V4.1.1, Sunlink DNI V7.0, and VAX/VMS V5.3.

No one is very found of Sunlink it seems.

Most respondees suggested a work-around, using ftp, TCP/IP instead of DNIlink.
Unfortunately, the VAX systems with which we are communicating are closed to
us, the only network option provided is DECnet.

Another work-around is to abandon the Sun, and use a DEC platform of some
kind. This I have been considering, if $ can be appropriated.

Sun support told me they have never seen this problem, and gave me a jumbo
patch to install in hopes that it would fix whatever was wrong. I have not
done this yet because I think I may have stumbled upon a fix for the problem!

Normally to do file transfers I send username and password in the command line:

   dnicp -u username -p password hostname::"disk:[directory]filename" filename

this works fine for a while until the "inappropriate operation" bugaboo
appears. However, if there is a "proxy" account on the VAX/VMS system for that
username on the sun, then the problem goes away (99%, not completely).

Proxy accounts work sort of like .rhosts or hosts.equiv files. To install
a proxy account under VMS:

        $ run authorize
        UAF> add/proxy sunhost::sunusername vaxusername/default

Wildcards (*) can be substituted anywhere in the command line.

Thanks, very, very much to all for your suggestions!

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