Cisco CNS Network Registrar User's Guide, 5.5
Network Registrar User Interfaces
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Network Registrar User Interfaces

Table Of Contents

Network Registrar User Interfaces

Command Line Interface

Invoking the CLI

Exiting the CLI

Getting CLI Help

CLI Command Structure

Using the Create and Delete Keywords

Using the Set and Unset Keywords

Using the Enable and Disable Keywords

Saving CLI Changes

CLI Commands List

Graphical User Interface

Starting the GUI

Starting From a Remote Site

Entering or Editing a License Key

Menu Bar Selections

Admin Menu

Servers Menu

View Menu

Window Menu

Help Menu

Toolbar Buttons

Show Properties Button

Control Button

Show Statistics Button

Add Button

Remove Button

Server Manager Window

Status Monitor Window

Status Bar

Network Registrar User Interfaces

Network Registrar provides two ways of administering and managing DNS, DHCP, and TFTP servers:

Command Line Interface (CLI)

Graphical User Interface (GUI)

This chapter describes the Network Registrar user interfaces. Read this chapter before starting to configure the Network Registrar servers so that you become familiar with each user interface's capabilities.

For detailed procedures on how to perform administrative tasks on Network Registrar servers, see Chapter 4, "Administering Network Registrar."

Command Line Interface

Using the Network Registrar command line interface (CLI), the nrcmd program, you can control your servers' operations. You can set all configurable options, as well as start and stop the servers.

For details on how to perform administrative tasks on Network Registrar servers using the CLI, see Chapter 4, "Administering Network Registrar."

The remainder of this section describes how to use the nrcmd program and describes the following:

Invoking and exiting the program

Using command arguments

How the commands are organized and structured

Invoking the CLI

You can use the nrcmd program in batch mode by executing scripts that use the commands. You can also use the program interactively, where you enter commands at the "nrcmd>" prompt.

The nrcmd program is located on:

Windows—By default, in the \Program Files\Network Registrar\bin directory

Solaris or Linux—In the /install-path/nwreg2/usrbin directory

The command syntax is as follows (the square brackets indicate optional entries):

nrcmd [-C clustername] [-N username] [-P password] [-r] command specific-options 

The general options are:

-C clustername 
-N username 
-P password 
-r          (opens a read-only version of nrcmd)

If you omit the general options, Network Registrar gets them from the Registry or environment variables. If Network Registrar cannot find values for these parameters, it prompts you for them. If you omit the cluster name on a system where Network Registrar servers are installed, the nrcmd program assumes access to localhost and does not prompt you.

The Registry and environment variables are AIC_NAME for the name, AIC_PASSWORD for the password, and AIC_CLUSTER for the cluster name. The Solaris and Linux registry keys are in a file with the user's login name in the var/nwreg2/data/registry directory, with the file contents in the form name=value. The Windows Registry path is HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\American Internet\Network Registrar\2.0.

To execute the command line interface in interactive mode, enter:

nrcmd [-C clustername] [-N username] [-P password] 

This displays the interactive "nrcmd>" prompt, after which you enter a command and any parameters.

nrcmd> command [parameters] 

To specify a series of parameter values, use a comma between the values, without additional spaces.

Exiting the CLI

Exiting the Network Registrar user interfaces does not affect your network servers' or your hosts' ability to request leases or access the Internet.

To exit the Network Registrar CLI, use the exit command. Network Registrar writes all unsaved changes to the database. However, the server does not read the new changes until you use the server type reload (or simply server-type reload command, such as dhcp reload). If Network Registrar cannot save the changes, it displays the same error code as if you had used the save command.

nrcmd> server dns reload 
nrcmd> dhcp reload 
nrcmd> exit 

Getting CLI Help

To view the online help for the Network Registrar CLI, enter the help command.

nrcmd> help [command] 

CLI Command Structure

The nrcmd commands specify a class of objects that you can create, delete, or list. Each of these objects has attributes that you can set, unset, and get; or enable and disable. These objects can also have methods that are specific to the type of object, where you can perform operations on groups of properties.

When you use nrcmd commands to configure Network Registrar, you manipulate the following:

Classes—Objects that you can create, delete, or list. Examples are scopes, policies, and zones.

create—Creates an entry

delete—Removes an entry

list—Displays all the object entries

Properties—Attributes that you set or display. Examples are a zone's minimum TTL and lease times.

set—Sets the attribute value

unset—Removes the attribute value

get—Displays the attribute value

show—Displays all the object's attribute values

Features—Attributes that you enable or disable. Examples are enabling permanent leases and the DHCP LDAP service. After you enable a feature, you often need to set associated properties.

enable—Enables an attribute

disable—Disables an attribute

unset—Removes the attribute's enabled or disabled setting

get—Displays whether the attribute is enabled, disabled, or unset

Methods—Operations you can perform on groups of properties. Examples are adding a range of IP addresses to a scope and removing hosts from a zone.

How you specify a series of arguments depends on the type of command you use. The following sections describe the difference between using the create, set, and enable keywords.

Using the Create and Delete Keywords

You must supply the required arguments for the create keyword, although others are optional. The required arguments are positional—they must be in the specified order indicated in the syntax. The optional arguments are not positional.

For example, the syntax for creating a scope is scope name create ipaddr mask [attribute=value...]. This means that when you create the scope, you must supply it with a name, IP address, and subnet mask, in that order. You can add the optional attributes (indicated in square brackets) in any order.

The following command creates the scope testScope with the IP address and a mask of, and adds an optional attribute specifying the zone for any host created.

nrcmd> scope testScope create 

If you omit the attribute or its value, Network Registrar uses a default value. After the create keyword creates and assigns all specified parameters to the object, Network Registrar confirms that all the required arguments are in the right order and that the attributes have values, either default or user-specified ones. You get an error message if you omit the required arguments.

The delete keyword deletes an object from the database.

Using the Set and Unset Keywords

Use the set keyword in a command to set or change an attribute value, using an equal sign. If there are multiple values to set for an attribute, separate each value after the equal sign with a comma. To set multiple attribute/value definitions on a single command line, separate each one with a space character.

The following example sets the name of the DNS zone to which a DHCP client's hostname should be added for a scope, specifies a list of IP addresses you allow to perform zone transfers, and sets the client's client-class and domain name.

nrcmd> scope testScope set 
nrcmd> zone set auth-servers=, 
nrcmd> client 1,6,00:d0:ba:d3:bd:3b set client-class-name=classPC 

The unset keyword removes any explicitly defined values from attributes.

Using the Enable and Disable Keywords

Use the enable keyword in a command to enable an attribute. After enabling the attribute, you often have to set its associated properties. You must enable and set attributes on separate command lines.

The following example enables incremental transfer processing for the DNS server, and then changes the incremental transfer expiration interval.

nrcmd> dns enable ixfr-enable 
nrcmd> dns set ixfr-expire-interval=10d 

Use the disable keyword to disable an attribute. Many attributes have default enabled or disabled settings.

Saving CLI Changes

The CLI saves your changes to the database after you do one of the following:

Use the save command

Use the server type reload (or simply server-type reload) command

Exit from the CLI

CLI Commands List

This section contains the complete list of commands, grouped alphabetically (Table 3-1). You can use them at the "nrcmd>" prompt or insert them into scripts.

Table 3-1 CLI Commands 

This command...
Does the following...


Creates administrators and assigns them passwords


Defines the address block for DHCP subnet allocation


Defines the embedded policy for the address block


Creates clients and assigns them to client-classes


Creates client-classes

client-class policy

Sets embedded client-class policies


Sets embedded client policies


Creates a custom DHCP option


Specifies the DHCP server's properties


Specifies the IP address of the DHCP server's hardware card


Specifies the DNS server's properties


Quits the nrcmd program


Writes the state of the lease or a zone to a file

export addresses

Exports address into a file or database


Integrates user-written DHCP extensions into the Network Registrar DHCP server


Obtains an exclusive lock for the nrcmd program session


Provides online help


Loads configuration information from a file


Specifies the LDAP remote server's properties


Controls DHCP leases


Notifies you when you run out of available leases in a scope


Views and updates license information


Defines the namespace for virtual private networks (VPN) in DHCP


Defines data types for vendor-specific DHCP options


Specifies the policy information


Specifies information about remote DNS servers


Creates a summary of the dynamic and static address use for one or more clusters


Saves the current configuration changes


Specifies the scopes' properties


Sets embedded scopes properties


Creates scope selection tags


Affects server behavior


Configures session parameters


Controls DHCP subnets


Specifies the TFTP server's properties


Enables or disables SNMP traps


Defines vendor-specific DHCP options


Specifies the DNS zones' properties

Graphical User Interface

You can also use the Network Registrar graphical user interface (GUI) to control your servers' operations. The GUI consists of the following elements:

Commands invoked from the menu bar


Two windows—Server Manager (Figure 3-1) and Server Status Monitor (Figure 3-2)

Figure 3-1 Network Registrar Main Window

Figure 3-2 Status Monitor Window

Starting the GUI

To start Network Registrar, you need to start the program and log on to a cluster. A cluster is the physical host running the Network Registrar DNS, DHCP, and TFTP servers. If a cluster does not exist, you must create one first.

You need to connect to this cluster to configure or administer the servers in it. Often, Network Registrar's DNS, DHCP, and TFTP servers run on the same physical machine. You can specify localhost for the servers running on the same system as the GUI.

You can start the Network Registrar GUI at any time. The servers do not need to be running. However, you cannot save changes unless the servers are running. You can stop the DNS, DHCP, and TFTP servers, but the server agent must be running on the cluster to which you want to connect.

Tip On Solaris, choose the Common Desktop Environment (CDE), if available, in preference to the OpenWindows Desktop. The appearance of the Solaris GUI is superior under CDE.

To start the GUI on a Windows or Solaris system, perform the following steps:

Step 1 Invoke the GUI program based on the operating system:

On Windows—Choose Start > Programs > Network Registrar 5.5.

On Solaris—Enter the following at the command line (the install-path is the installation directory):


This opens the Network Registrar main window with the Server Manager window inside it (Figure 3-1).

Step 2 If you are starting the GUI for the first time, there are no clusters listed in the Server Manager window. You must add a cluster. Right-click the List of Clusters object in the Server Manager window and click Add Cluster. Alternatively, from the Admin menu, click Clusters, then Add cluster in the Clusters dialog box. Either way opens the Add Cluster dialog box (Figure 3-3).

Figure 3-3 Add Cluster Dialog Box

If you are starting the GUI with a cluster already created, the Login for Network Registrar dialog box appears. Go to Step 5.

Step 3 In the Add Cluster dialog box, add the hostname of the cluster. Enter localhost if the cluster is on the same machine as the GUI. Because of the way Network Registrar concatenates the name of the cluster with the name of the server in each cluster with the "at" (@) symbol, do not enter a hostname that includes this symbol.

If you want to connect to the cluster immediately, check the "Connect to this cluster once added" box. If the cluster is invalid or does not exist on the network, a warning message indicates that you cannot connect to it. Re-enter a valid cluster name.

Step 4 Click OK in the Add Cluster dialog box.

Step 5 In the Login dialog box, either for Network Registrar or the cluster, enter the username admin and tab to enter the password changeme.

If you want read-only access to Network Registrar, check the Read Only box in the Login dialog box. Note that read-only access provides limited functionality. The Server Manager window indicates after the cluster name whether you set read-only access to the cluster.

Step 6 Click OK in the Login dialog box.

Step 7 The first time you connect to a newly installed cluster, you must enter a license key. See the "Entering or Editing a License Key" section.

Step 8 Change the changeme password as soon as you can for security purposes. From the Admin menu, click Change Administrator Password.

Starting From a Remote Site

If you run the Network Registrar GUI remotely rather than from your server machine, you must first add a cluster. See the "Starting the GUI" section. Adding a cluster connects the remote machine on which you are running the GUI to the server that provides DNS, DHCP, or TFTP services. After you add the cluster, you can configure and monitor the servers. The connection and login process is the same as that described in the "Starting the GUI" section.

Entering or Editing a License Key

Network Registrar licensing controls the ability to configure your servers. Every copy of Network Registrar requires a license. You can find the license key on the back of the software CD-ROM case. You must enter the license key the first time you configure each cluster.

If you have a permanent license, you do not see the license dialog box again.

If you have an evaluation copy of Network Registrar, you have a license that will expire.

If you have an invalid or missing license key, you cannot configure or manage the Network Registrar servers. However, the servers will continue to function normally.

Perform the following steps to enter or edit the license key:

Step 1 If the Invalid License dialog box appears, click New Key. If you have an existing cluster and want to change the license key, right-click the cluster object in the Server Manager window and click Properties.

Step 2 In the Properties dialog box for the cluster, check the "Edit license key" box.

Step 3 Copy the 16-character license key from the back of the CD-ROM case. Enter it in the four fields of the Properties dialog box, four characters per field.

Step 4 Click OK.

Menu Bar Selections

The menu bar commands handle administration and determine the way you can view Network Registrar activity. Commands are grouped in task-specific menus on the menu bar (Figure 3-4).

Figure 3-4 Network Registrar Menu Bar

Admin Menu

Use commands on the Admin menu (Figure 3-5) to do the following:

Add, connect to, remove, and disconnect from Network Registrar clusters

Add administrators and set the clusters for which they are responsible

Change administrator passwords

Exit Network Registrar

Figure 3-5 Admin Menu

Servers Menu

The Servers menu (Figure 3-6) is active only if you click a server object in the Server Manager window.

Figure 3-6 Servers Menu

Use the Servers menu to do the following:

Start a server

Stop a server

Reload a server to update changes made to server information

Add the server to the Status Monitor (Figure 3-2)

Remove a server from the Status Monitor

Show server statistics

Show related servers—DHCP failover servers only

See Figure 3-2 for the Status Monitor.

Tip You can also invoke these commands, after clicking a server object, from the right-mouse-click menu. For details on server administration tasks, see Chapter 4, "Administering Network Registrar."

View Menu

The View menu (Figure 3-7) governs viewing the Network Registrar windows.

Figure 3-7 View Menu

Use the View menu commands to reveal or hide the following:

Server Manager tree (Figure 3-1)

Server Status Monitor (Figure 3-2)

Status bar (see the "Status Bar" section)

Window Menu

The Window menu (Figure 3-8) controls the appearance and positioning of the Network Registrar windows.

Figure 3-8 Window Menu

Use the Window menu to do the following:

Cascade the windows on top of each other, but slightly offset

Tile the windows so that they are divided equally at the top and bottom of the window

Show the number of current windows (a check mark appears next to the active window)

Help Menu

The Help menu (Figure 3-9) provides on-line help and the About Network Registrar window.

Figure 3-9 Help Menu

Toolbar Buttons

The toolbar (Figure 3-10) displays buttons that initiate the most frequently used commands.

Figure 3-10 Network Registrar Toolbar

Tip After you click an object in the Server Manager window, you can use the right-click menu to perform some of the toolbar commands, or double-click the object icon or name, to open a properties dialog box for the object.

Show Properties Button

Use the Show Properties toolbar button to show (and configure) the properties of the object you choose (from the cluster level down) in the Server Manager window.

Tip You can also open the properties for the object by double-clicking the object.

Control Button

The Control toolbar button opens the server's Control dialog box (Figure 3-11), from which you can start, stop, or reload the server. You must click OK to activate the start, stop, or reload.

Figure 3-11 Control Dialog Box

Note Stopping a server does not terminate it, but stops it from handling further requests.

Show Statistics Button

The Show statistics toolbar button opens the Statistics window (Figure 3-12) for the selected server. Refresh the statistics by clicking Refresh.

Figure 3-12 Statistics Window

Add Button

Use the Add button to add clusters, DNS zones, or DHCP scopes, depending on the object you chose in the Server Manager window.

Remove Button

Use the Remove toolbar button to remove clusters, DNS zones, or DHCP scopes, depending on what you chose in the Server Manager window.

Server Manager Window

Use the Server Manager and Status Monitor windows to configure and monitor the Network Registrar servers.

The Server Manager window provides standard tree control starting with clusters at the top level. Under each cluster is a list of DNS, DHCP, and TFTP servers. Under each server is a subtree of server-specific data structures. This display lets you choose servers for browsing, configuring, and control, or for status information.

Tip Each cluster and server object has a plus (+) symbol next to it, whether or not it has subobjects. When you click the plus symbol for an object that does not have a subobject, the symbol disappears.

Note Network Registrar treats the "at" (@) symbol in server names (tree control) as a special character. Before displaying the server name, Network Registrar removes all characters after and including the symbol. This is typically the cluster name. However, if you include the symbol as part of the server name, the characters after the symbol are lost.

The Server Manager uses icons to indicate different Network Registrar components. Table 3-2 lists all the icons in the Server Manager tree control.

Table 3-2 Network Registrar Icons

This icon...

List of clusters


DNS server

DNS server that needs to be reloaded (the red star indicates the need to reload)

DNS zone

DNS secondary zone

DHCP server

DHCP server that needs to be reloaded

DHCP scope

Status Monitor Window

The Status Monitor window (Figure 3-13) is where you can place server icons so that you can monitor their status. The icons change to reflect the server's current status.

Figure 3-13 Status Monitor Window

To find the status of a server, click the server in the Server Manager window. From the Servers (or right-mouse-click) menu, click Add to Status Monitor. To remove the server status icon from the Status Monitor window, right-click the icon and click Remove.

The traffic lights indicate the state of the server—Started is green, stopped is red.

The bar to the right of the traffic light shows the health of the server (how well it is running)—The health is a combination of the server's resources and network balance.

For details on what factors affect a server's health, see "Displaying the Server's Health" section on page 4-13.

When Network Registrar cannot contact the server, the warning triangle and exclamation point appear, and the green or red color is muted. The warning can mean the network is down, the server machine crashed, or someone stopped the server agent from the control panel.

Status Bar

The status bar at the bottom of the Server Manager window provides information about commands or actions. When you highlight a menu item, you see a short description of its function in the status bar. You can remove and re-activate the status bar from the View menu.