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Map network drive


Map network drive

Hi All,

Is there any way to map a non-VMS network share ( Windows XP/2000/2003 ) at OpenVMS 8.3 as a local drive? Sorry if this already was discussed around here - just could not find anything.

Many thanks,
Richard Whalen
Honored Contributor

Re: Map network drive

I think that SAMBA is focused on providing access to a VMS disk.

So, you best option would be for the Windows system to offer NFS access to the file share.
Shriniketan Bhagwat
Trusted Contributor

Re: Map network drive


You can use CIFS (SAMBA) or NFS to access the network share.
Refer the documents which explains how to use, examples etc on CIFS from below link


May be helpful.

Paul Nunez
Respected Contributor

Re: Map network drive

Hi Dmitry,

HP CIFS for OpenVMS includes the SMBCLIENT utility that allows the OVMS host to connect to a share on a remote system, but it does not make that share accessible to the entire OVMS system - the connection is only available to that instance of smbclient. For example:

$ smbclient \\winsys\sharename --user uname

The smbclient interface is more akin to FTP than anything else. You can list directories, get/put files, etc.

Like FTP, smbclient has the ability to spawn to the command prompt or execute any host command (using the ! directive).


Honored Contributor

Re: Map network drive

OpenVMS isn't very good at this, and which is why you're having difficulty locating information on this topic. The operating system is comparatively limited here, and hasn't particularly made the transition from its classic role as a central server into its increasingly common role as a client of other servers and services.

In some detail, OpenVMS lacks anything similar to a FUSE interface (filesystem in user space) and which is a fairly common file system extension layer on various platforms, which means that any "odd" file systems and any network shares all to follow the model of the NFS client, and build and integrate the VMS interfaces and tools into the package, and using internal and undocumented and version-dependent APIs. In aggregate, this greatly increases the complexity and support costs.

For clients accessing remote storage, off-hand there are the TMSCP and MSCP served cluster storage, an older NFS client, and DEC's old DFS packages. Maybe a few others. There are comparatively few storage clients for OpenVMS.

There are no WebDAV clients for VMS.

No FAT or NTFS clients for local file system support.

No SMB/CIFS/Samba nor AFP clients for common network shares.

No FTP or SFTP file system clients.

The available NFS client is based on NFSv2, which will obviously lack some of the features available with the more recent NFSv3 and NFSv4 protocols.

An iSCSI initiator is around, but that's a limited early adopter kit.


If adding storage is the goal and NFS isn't sufficient (and NFS has issues around compatibility with the VMS expectations around file sharing and locking due to the age of the NFS client on VMS; the VMS client is NFSv2, and NFS locking didn't arrive until the NFSv4 range IIRC), it's usually easier to add some disk drives to the OpenVMS box, and you may (will?) end up using command-mode file transfer clients including ftp and sftp, or the smbclient stuff.

Another option which bypasses the need for remote storage clients (and the need for hardware) can involve hardware emulation, and using the capabilities of the host operating system. VAX and Alpha emulators are available.
Occasional Advisor

Re: Map network drive

Hi Paul,


Could I use smbclient to copy an image backup of the OpenVMS system to a CIFS share on a UNIX clould backup system we have? Sure would be off site...





Honored Contributor

Re: Map network drive

I would not waste any effort establishing with Samba/CIFS port, nor with SMB-based transfers.


For remote storage of VMS files (and assuming sufficient network bandwidth), consider using zip "-V" the files to protect the metadata, and then transfer the zip archives to your Unix remote storage with sftp or scp or equivalent.


Yes, by default, you need to quote the "-V" switch to get that past the DCL and C command parsing that zip uses on OpenVMS.