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Please help me to understand the IFS

Frosty the Coder

Legendary Poster
I've never had to work with the IFS and believed that it was a way to "share" documents on the iSeries and Network.

I thought that if you had a folder, within a path on the network, and had defined that same folder/path in the IFS that you could drop data into the windows folder and see/work it from the IFS.
I thought that this was something that happened automagically.

I thought wrong.
(Not the first time, certainly not the last)

SO, the network guys created \\fileserver\frostyfolder\frostysubfolder on the network.
The iSeries admin created a similar setup w/in the IFS.
However the data that is in the network folder is not shown in the IFS.

What do I need to do to have the IFS folder "see" the files on the network?

Reading the manuals, I might be able to use CPYFRMIMPF (copy from import file) or CPYFRMSTMF (copy from stream file)
to get the data once it is in the IFS.


VIP Member
Hey Frosty,

True, there is no magic integration between an IFS "share" and a network share.

Have a look at this: http://www-01.ibm.com/support/docview.wss?uid=nas8N1021028

The QNTC files system can act as a SMB/CIFS client and mount Windows shares to the AS/400. I have used this once many years ago. It worked fine. That was probably a Windows 2003 server-based share. My guess is that there can be dramas with domain controller security level/SMB version depending on your Windows version and your i OS version.

A quick Google search on that question brought up these:

"QNTC and NetServer only support SMB 1.0 in V7R1 and lower releases. Support for SMB V2.0 is available in V7R2 and above. As of V7R3 (current version), there is no support for SMB V3.0.


For those of you on V7R2 and later, here is an important Technote related to SMB V2.0:



Legendary Poster
Just to add to Justin's great response … And forgive me if I'm over-simplifying or stating the obvious … The IFS is a stream based filesystem, not database/record based or file/member based. It's like a C:\ drive on your iSeries.

Last edited:


Well Known Member
Frosty -

Using the QNTC file system has some twists and turns.

1) We have found that using a Windows Domain account does not work with QNTC on our systems, thus it was necessary to create a local account on the Windows servers with the same name and password as the IBM i user. We also had trouble using mixed-case passwords, so we always use a password that is all upper case. Please note that the password for the IBM i user must exactly match the password for the Windows local account.

2) If the Windows systems are not in the same subnet on the local network, you will need to use MKDIR to create links under the QNTC folder in the IFS - these commands will need to be in your system startup program, because the QNTC links disappear after each IPL.

For example, if you have a Windows Server named Server100, use the command MKDIR '/QNTC/Server100' to create the IFS link for the server. Once you have this link created under /QNTC, you should be able to see any shares that are available which your IBM i account has permissions by using option 5 to browse the link for that server under QNTC.

3) Also, we don't create Windows local accounts for the regular IBM i users - we create "Service" accounts for doing copies to the Windows shares and in our programs use the IBM API's to do a profile swap such that the regular user can run the job but it swaps to the Service account when copying the file to the Windows share, then uses the API to swap back to the regular user account once finished.

4) Also note that the SMB protocol is horribly slow when transferring files over a Wide-Area network, this is one of the downsides of using QNTC and is documented (although poorly) by IBM.

I will send you a private message with my telephone number if you want to discuss further, let me know.