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Date:      Mon, 14 Jan 2008 11:13:50 -0500
From:      Jerry McAllister <>
To:        "Marc G. Fournier" <>
Subject:   Re: AFS ... or equivalent ...
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <>

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On Mon, Jan 14, 2008 at 12:34:24AM -0400, Marc G. Fournier wrote:
> Hi ...
>   I recently started working for a company that is using AFS to mirror their 
> data between various data centers, in the US, Asia and the EU ... the idea is 
> that the several thousand servers that are being run have access to identical 
> information ..
> Now, depressingly enough, it looks like OpenAFS works on everything *but* 
> BSD ... :(
>     IBM AFS for AIX, Version 3.6
>     IBM AFS for Digital Unix, Version 3.6
>     IBM AFS for HP-UX, Version 3.6
>     IBM AFS for Linux, Version 3.6
>     IBM AFS for SGI IRIX, Version 3.6
>     IBM AFS for Solaris, Version 3.6
>   Does anyone know if there is any serious work being done to get AFS working 
> under FreeBSD?  I have a large project that I'm working on that AFS (or 
> something equivalent) would be *very* useful for, but we're trying to keep it 
> as FreeBSD-pure as possible ...

Well, there is a client-only AFS project called Arla.   I have been 
using it for about 1 1/2 years with no problem.   But, it tends to 
be some versions behind in the FreeBSD it supports.  Whoever supports
it apparently doesn't have the time or other resources to keep up to
the most recent FreeBSD versions.

I have been told by persons who have done an AFS port here to a proprietary
BSD based UNIX (but not any of the current free ones),  that the difficuly
part is the client and that the server is relatively easy to port.  The
reason being that the client has to reach deep in to the kernel, but
the server does not - is pretty much sufficient unto itself.

I know that one of the impediments in the past was the politics with 
the AFS group that was spun out of CMU, vs IBM vs some other interests 
and whose pocketbook was going to get gored all confounded with some 
claims for a newer, more wonderful thing called DFS which was supposed 
to obsolete AFS and also be integrated with a distrubuted queueing system, 
but which now seems like will never become real.  

But those issues are fairly ancient and mostly settled.   OpenAFS seems 
to be the result and it runs well on the systems listed in the OP.  So it 
would seem like folks could just ignore all that and move on to getting
a good working OpenAFS port -- if only enough people could spare the
resources for doing the necessary work.

I would sure like to see both a good AFS client and an AFS server become
well supported.    OpenAFS has some new big technical issues to solve.
Maybe having the smarts of FreeBSD contributing to the thinking, it would
help those issues come to reasonable solutions too.


>   Thoughts?  Pointers?
> - ----
> Marc G. Fournier           Hub.Org Networking Services (
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