Dan, could you please elaborate on the problems you see with the test?
As far as I see, the only thing that would happen if super.tearDown is called, is that a rollback is issued and the the connection is closed.
I do not understand how not doing this would affect other tests with regard of "the extra time needed to start the network server".
I think that due to the other problems I had with converting the test, I forgot to close the connection manually. This would have to be done inside a try-block, where any exceptions are ignored. This is because setting the debug property causes havoc in the communication between the client and the server. My intention was that the network server I use is to be used only for this test, since simply unsetting the debug property is not enough for it to recover.
Also, what authentication errors are you seeing?