Building an NFS Home Directory Server for the NTG Lab

  • @anonymous said:

    Couldn't you do the same thing with CentOS? What made you decide to use OpenSuse Leap? Also, how do I setup my other servers to mount this /home and not the local /home?

    Yes, you could very easily do this with any UNIX as NFS is essentially universal. It is the native file server protocol of the UNIX world (originally from SunOS, I believe.) So good choices include CentOS, Suse, Ubuntu, Debian, Arch, FreeBSD, Dragonfly, AIX, Solaris, OpenIndiana, NetBSD, etc.

    OpenSuse is my "go to" choice for storage appliances because they, more than any other Linux distro, focus on storage and cluster (we only care about the former here) capabilities and tend to run a few years ahead of their competitors in features (they were the first to use ReiserFS, long ago, first with BtrFS, etc.) BtrFS has long been stable and default on Suse, still not so on any other distro.

    OpenSuse Leap was chosen over Tumbleweed because for storage we want long term stability rather than the bleeding edge features. Leap is the long term support release of OpenSuse (it is a mirror copy of SLES, the Suse's world's CentOS to RHEL relationship) whereas OpenSuse Tumbleweed is a rolling release not unlike Fedora.

    And lastly, I'm working on the directions for how to do that today. There are several ways to do it, like I showed one in my example above, but for solid /home connections we want to do something special.

  • @anonymous said:

    The benefit of Btrfs allows users to take advantage of Snapper. Users can recover the previous status of the system using snapshots. Snapper will automatically create hourly snapshots of the system, as well as pre- and post-snapshots for YaST and zypper transactions. Also you can boot right into a snapshot to recover from corruption of important files on the system (like bash). A powerful system and a powerful tool.

    BtrFS: Think of it as native ZFS competitor for Linux (which is what it is.) Ten years newer than ZFS and not a port from another OS and no need for licensing work arounds like using FUSE. BtrFS is under heavy development and is generally considered to be the future of large capacity filesystems on Linux. Like ZFS it has volume management built in (no need for LVM) and software RAID.

  • @Dashrender said:

    What does YaST stand for? I'm to lazy for Google.

    YaST: Yet another Setup Tool

    YaST is one of the Suse claims to fame. Handles nearly everything and has been an integral part of the OS since 1996 making it TWENTY this year!!

  • YAST:


  • @scottalanmiller I used Suse back in the 90's. I think Yast had a GUI interface as well. Do you know if it still does?

  • Sure does, it is built on the Qt Toolkit. I don't have a desktop on my Leap install since it is a server but if you were making an OpenSuse desktop and run YaST from the "start" menu then you would get the full GUI version of it.

    I prefer the TUI version since I just want to see it over SSH.

  • Yast reminds me of a TUI version of webmin 🙂

  • Wasn't WebMin based on YaST?

  • @scottalanmiller No idea. Maybe. Webmin supports many more distros.

  • - a web interface for Yast

  • @anonymous said:

    @scottalanmiller No idea. Maybe. Webmin supports many more distros.

    Many more since it supports more than just Linux. YaST is Suse only (and once upon a time Unified Linux, too) and is OEM supported by Suse and fully integrated. WebMin is a YaST-like add on for generic UNIX systems.

  • @anonymous said: - a web interface for Yast

    Yeah, that has been around for a while. But not as long as WebMin.

  • For NFS why not just use

  • @anonymous said:

    For NFS why not just use

    Depends, do you want to access it over a VPN? Do you want to use Pertino or ZeroTier? Do you have VLANs or multiple subnets?

  • It is not uncommon to only have servers approved to access the storage listed. So many shops will go in and add a server one by one to enable access. If your servers almost never change, this works pretty well and is extremely secure. You can do this in the firewall too, for even more security. But if you are using DevOps and creating and destroying VMs regularly you will want to automate this in some fashion.