Have been using this setup for clients on a Netware 4.20 network for Years now.

Ms tries to prevent XPHome users from this by not including IPX stack in
that product. But Novells client´s IPX stack works fine.

That is works fine for made installations. However to make new
installations work (that is to find servers to log onto) is tricky, some
hand on work with several installations/deinstallations changes in setup
parameters etc is required every time I set up a new network client now.

I can´t see the pattern, what makes it work, doesn´t make it work?

Installation on XPPro works fine everytime. But that license is more expensive.