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What does that RConsoleJ error message mean?

Baffled by those RConsoleJ error messages? John Sheesley?s not. Read his take on those pesky gray boxes, why they appear when they do, and what to do about them.


Most of the time, you use RConsoleJ without incident. You connect, run the programs you want, and disconnect, never once seeing an error message. However, things don’t always go off without a hitch. One day, you fire up RConsoleJ, connect to the server, and then a little gray box appears in the middle of the screen displaying an error message. Another day, you get an error message even before you connect. How do you know what these errors are telling you? How do you correct the situation? Allow me to enlighten you.

What is RConsoleJ?
RConsoleJ is Novell’s Java version of the RConsole remote administration utility for NetWare 5.x servers. It gives you additional capabilities over the older RConsole utility, and it has a new look and feel. To find out more about RConsoleJ, see the Daily Drill Down “Administer your NetWare server remotely using RConsoleJ.”

Take a message please
Error messages can appear at one of two times—either when you try to connect to your server or while the server is connected. Naturally, when you encounter one before you make the connection, it’s telling you that something is preventing you from using RConsoleJ. You’ll notice that these messages appear in red, preceded by the word Error: in the area above the Server Address field on the Novell RConsoleJ main menu. Some of the common connection error messages you’ll encounter include:
  • Unknown Host—When RConsoleJ can’t resolve the DNS name of the server to which you want to connect and that you’ve entered in the Server Address field, you’ll see this message. Make sure you haven’t mistyped the name of the server. Also, make sure you have a DNS entry for the server’s name.
  • Can’t Connect To (the message will next list an ip address:port or dns name:port to which it can’t connect)—You’ll see this error when RConsoleJ either can’t find the server specified in the Server Address field or can’t connect to the port that you’ve specified in the Remote Server Port No field. Make sure you can ping the server’s address and that you haven’t chosen a different port to be listened to by the RConsole Agent on the server.
  • Not A Proxy At (ip address:port or dns name:port)—When you try to connect to a server as an RConsole Proxy and it’s not configured to do so, this error will appear. To resolve it, click the Advanced button on the Novell RConsoleJ screen and verify that your proxy information has been correctly set. It’s possible that you accidentally selected the Connect Through Proxy check box. Also, go to the server and check to make sure it’s configured to act as a proxy.
  • Connected To A Proxy At (ip address:port or dns name:port)—You’ll see this error message if you use RConsoleJ to connect to a server that’s configured to only act as a proxy and is not configured for remote access. Make sure you’ve loaded the RCONAG6.NLM on the server. Also make sure you’ve entered the correct address in the Server Address field for the server to which you want to connect.
  • Connection Failed—This is a variation of the Can’t Connect To error message. Make sure RCONAG6.NLM is loaded on the server and that you’ve entered the proper address in the Server Address field in RConsoleJ.

Stuck in the middle
When an error message occurs while you’re in an RConsoleJ session, it will appear in a gray GUI box in the middle of the screen. Also, RConsoleJ can only display your NetWare server’s text screens. So, when you see a GUI element appear in the middle of your RConsoleJ session, something’s wrong.

When you encounter such an error, you’ll usually need to disconnect from the server, close the RConsoleJ session, and reconnect to the server from the Novell RConsoleJ main menu. In some cases, you may need to physically go to the server to deal with the issue causing the error. Error messages that can appear in the middle of a session include:
  • Disconnected—If the workstation loses communication with the server, you’ll receive this message. It occurs because of a network error, because the RCONAG6.NLM controlling RConsoleJ access has been unloaded at the server, or because the server has abended. To resolve the problem, ping the server to see if your connection is still good. If it is, reconnect to the server. If you can’t reconnect, check the server for an abend or see if the RCONAG6.NLM file is still loaded.
  • This Screen Is Destroyed—This error occurs when the screen displayed in the RConsoleJ window no longer exists on the server console. This problem creeps up when the NLM displaying the screen has abended or has been unloaded at the server. You can minimize this problem by selecting the Sync check box in RConsoleJ.
  • This Screen Is Locked—You’ll see this message when the server console on the target server locks. The message will disappear when the server console unlocks. You can sometimes unlock the server using RConsoleJ, but a visit to the server may be necessary.

Conclusion
There’s not a specific skill or talent for interpreting error messages. It’s usually just a matter of learning from previous errors and remembering how to correct the situation. Use this list of common RConsoleJ errors and fixes wisely. It can save you time, and you just might impress your boss.

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