Network File System (NFS)

What is NFS?

Network File System (NFS) is a distributed file system protocol originally developed by Sun Microsystems in 1984. It allows users to access files on a remote server as if they were located on their local computer. NFS is a client-server protocol, which means that there are two types of computers involved in an NFS network: clients and servers. Clients are the computers that access files on the server, while servers are the computers that store the files.

NFS Benefits

There are many benefits to using NFS, including:

  • Ease of use: NFS is a very easy protocol to use. Clients can access files on NFS servers using the same commands that they would use to access files on their local computer.
  • Scalability: NFS is a scalable protocol that can be used to connect a large number of clients to a single server.
  • Security: NFS supports a variety of security features, including authentication, authorization, and encryption.
  • Reliability: NFS is a reliable protocol that is designed to withstand network failures.

How does NFS Work?

When a client wants to access a file on an NFS server, it sends a request to the server. The server then sends the file to the client. NFS uses a number of different protocols to transfer files, including the Remote Procedure Call (RPC) protocol and the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP).

Versions of NFS

There are currently four major versions of NFS:

  • NFSv1: NFSv1 was the first version of NFS, released in 1984. It is no longer widely used.
  • NFSv2: NFSv2 was released in 1986. It is still used in some environments, but it is being gradually replaced by NFSv3 and NFSv4.
  • NFSv3: NFSv3 was released in 1993. It is the most widely used version of NFS.
  • NFSv4: NFSv4 was released in 2000. It is the most recent version of NFS and it offers a number of new features, such as improved security and performance.

Updated: April 27, 2023

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