Summary: Linux in an NIS environment

From: Dave (
Date: Wed Aug 26 1998 - 12:28:04 CDT

  It can be done. Now it looks and feels like a real UNIX machine ;) .
  Here are a number of things:

 1) To get NIS working as a client, get
  and read it. It contains some very helpful information and which files
and updates are required to get Linux setup as an NIS Client, NIS Slave or
even a NIS Master. There is also information on how to make it work in an
NIS+ setting.
  The server to get the files from is
  The Red Hat 5.1 documentation seems to imply that the NIS Client is built
into the kernel. It may be, but it didn't work. I had to load the whole yp
kit to get it to work. The instructions to "create a yp.conf file" and
"domainname `cat /etc/domainname`" were a waste of time.

 2) For automount to work, get the an "amd" replacement from
  This replaces the amd (kind'a an automount) program on Linux with an
autofs program that seems to support auto.X files better.
  Once unpacked and complied, go to the ./samples directory, and there is a
file rc.autofs that will do a ypcat of the auto.X files, and do the right
thing when started. I cp'ed to /etc/rc.d/init.d/autofs and made
a link to the /etc/rc.d/rc2.d as S98autofs and K20autofs.
  I found several other links to amd in the rc3.d and rc5.d, so I mv'ed the
amd to amd-, and made a "ln -s autofs amd" in the init.d. Otherwise, make
sure you seek out and destroy any links to the amd program, or it will
still try to start on the next reboot.
  When you run "/etc/rc.d/init.d/autofs start|stop" it works great.
  Both packages support the "./configure", "make" and "make install", so
getting them onto this machine was easy. If I had had to create my own
"autofs start" script for the /etc/rc.d/init.d, I would still be fighting
this. It is way to complex.

  NOTE: I had problems with mounting directories that were home'ed on
several DEC UNIX machines. The filesystems that were home'ed on SunOS and
Solaris boxes worked fine. It turns out that the Linux box was not in the
Primary DNS server, and so the DEC UNIX boxes would not allow it to
connect. I don't know why the Sun boxes would. As soon as I updated the DNS
records, everything worked as expected. I was just playing around with the
box, so I was using the IP address instead of a name. I guess I had to get
real ;) .

  Original Post.

  I have the unenviable job of getting a Linux Red Hat 5.1 box integrated
to our existing NIS based network.

  I have the box setup to be an NIS Client, and that seems to be working.
  But I can not seem to get this box to "see" the automounted FS.
  I can do a ypcat auto.? (? = one of 4 map files) and see an accurate list
of that automount info.

  This Linux stuff uses a program called "amd" as the automount deamon, and
it has a support file called /etc/amd.conf that you are supposed to set up
a number of settings.
  If you run amd without an /etc/amd.conf file, it doesn't work.
  If you run amd with a blank /etc/amd.conf file, it doesn't work.
  Is there someone that has a working amd.conf file that they would like to
  The setup here is:
  Each file contains different automount info. I want this box to be able
to "cd /sj/XXXX" (where XXXX is a valid automount directory), and get that
point mounted.
  There are no directoies (currently) that I want this box to export.

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