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Using the Network File System (NFS) in a large workstation environment requires a bit of planning. The idea of NFS is to share files on one host with other hosts. In most cases, filesystems to be shared across the network fall into two categories: binary filesystems (those which contain compiled software) and user or home filesystems (which contain users' login areas).
The most simple minded way to share resources would be to mount every resource (each available NFS filesystem) onto every host. To avoid collisions, each filesystem would have to have a unique name. This is one possibility, but not a very intelligent one. As experienced users will realize, cross-mounting too many NFS filesystems is a recipe for all kinds of trouble.
Cfengine offers a simple model which can help you pick out only the
resources you need from the list of NFS filesystems. It will then mount
them automatically and edit the appropriate filesystem tables. It does
this by defining classes of hosts. For instance -- you really don't
need to mount a binary filesystem for an
ultrix system onto an
HPUX system. There would be no point -- binary resources are
architecture or hard-class dependent. But home directories
are architecture independent.
Cfengine lets you to define a list of allowed servers for various hosts so that only filesystems from the servers will be considered for mounting!
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