NFSv4 in Solaris 10

One new feature of Solaris 10 that has slipped under the radar is NFSv4. I work on the client side for Solaris. You can find the rfc here and the community website here. Original Design Considerations.

So what's the big deal of NFSv4 anyways?

  • NFSv4 makes security mandatory. NFS IS SECURE!
  • Sun gave up control of NFS to the IETF.
  • A common ACL model (Unix and Windows working together before Gates and Papadopulos made it popular).
  • File level delegation to reduce network latency and server workload for a class of applications.
  • COMPOUND procedure to allow for flexible request construction and reduction of network latency and server workload.
  • Built in minor versioning to extend the protocol through the auspices of the IETF protocol process.
  • Integrated locking (no need of a separate protocol - NLM, and we work with Windows locking semanctics).
  • One protocol and one port (2049) for all functionality.

    So who else is implementing NFSv4?

  • University of Michigan/CITI has putback to Linux 2.6. Back in 1999/2000, this is where I spent my last year in school working.
  • Netapp has already released their implementation.
  • IBM too.
  • Have Windows in your environment? Hummingbird can hook you up today.
  • Rick at the University of Guelph is implementing a server for BSD.

    I'll go into details for some of the features of NFSv4 in future posts.

    We hold regular interopability-fests about every 4 months via Connectathon and (NFSv4 only) bake-a-thons ( last one).
  • Comments:

    Will there be cachefs support for NFSv4?

    Posted by guest on December 08, 2004 at 02:43 PM PST #

    CacheFS will not be supported for NFSv4. The technical reason really stems from cacheFS's internal knowledge and use of NFS filehandles as file references.

    CacheFS already doesn't work properly with client-side failover, and NFSv4 brings the concept of volatile filehandles (for OS's like Linux). Both of these require a method for the NFS client to update the filehandles cached as references in CacheFS - we don't have that method as of yet.

    So an interesting question is your network fast enough that you don't need cacheFS anymore? how fast is your disk?

    Maybe leveraging off of delegations is a better design.

    Posted by eric kustarz on December 09, 2004 at 04:47 AM PST #

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