[OpenAFS-announce] OpenAFS celebrates its 5th birthday by releasing OpenAFS 1.4.0
Tue, 01 Nov 2005 19:05:36 -0500
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The OpenAFS Gatekeepers are pleased to announce the release of version
1.4.0 of OpenAFS. This version incorporates hundreds of enhancements
and improvements since the 1.2 series. Many bugs and programming
inefficiencies (some of which have been present since IBM's donation
of AFS to the open source community) have been eliminated, resulting
in a much more stable product. Improvements for Windows users are
OpenAFS 1.4.0 also represents a significant step forward for Kerberos 5
integration. This release allows Kerberos 5 KDCs including Microsoft
Active Directory to be the source of AFS client authentication.
Changes under UNIX (tm) and *nix Operating Systems
Increased Performance and Stability:
The addition of pthreaded servers and thread optimizations in the
RPC and RX libraries provide increased performance over the 1.2
release. Cache chunk locking has been refined, and native operating
system vnodes on Linux and MacOS X are now supported. Support for files
larger than two Gigabytes in the AFS file system is now available to
operating systems providing native support for large files. ntp,
rlogind, rsh and other unnecessary and potentially insecure services
have been removed.
Increased Server Efficiency in Handling Mobile Clients:
Use of multi-host probing has been improved, reducing the time a
server needs to timeout clients no longer accessible on the network.
Server load is reduced by new functionality allowing servers to queue
callback notifications for unreachable clients until the client contacts
Audit logs are available for all servers augmenting existing server
monitoring and debugging tools. All logs can be output to named pipes
allowing organizations to deploy custom filters. Groups of groups
(a.k.a. Supergroups) can now be created on the protection server
providing additional flexibility in the administration of user access.
The Kerberos 5 authentication tool, aklog, is now distributed as part
Other New Features:
The new "vos copy" command allows an administrator to create a new
volume and copy the contents of an existing volume in one step. This
eliminates the need to perform a "vos dump" followed by a "vos restore".
The "vos convertROtoRW" command allows an administrator to convert an
existing RO replica into a new RW site in the event the current RW site
The -vattachpar file server option reduces file server startup time by
instructing the file server to attach volumes from multiple vice
partitions in parallel.
Changes under Microsoft Windows (2000, XP, and 2003 - 32-bit editions)
Performance has been enhanced by support for a persistent cache. The
default cache size is now 96 Megabytes with 10,000 cache entries. The
maximum cache size has been extended to 1.2 Gigabytes. Overall, the 1.4.0
release is between 30% and 150% faster than the 1.2 release, depending
on the mode of operation.
Improved User Experience:
Integration into the Windows environment has been significantly enhanced
with the addition of support for browsing of AFS servers, an AFS context
sensitive pop up menu, an improved Sys tray tool, and enhancements to both
the GUI and command line programs.
All of the known security problems present in 1.2.10 have been fixed.
Compatibility with the Cisco IPSec VPN client has been added, and the
AFS Client now communicates with Microsoft's integrated firewall to open
ports as needed, allowing receipt of callback messages from the server
without manual configuration.
Enhanced Integration in Heterogeneous Environments:
AFS UNC paths are now supported, eliminating reliance on mapped drive
letters and allowing for true worldwide path usage and cross platform
file system links. By default, filenames beginning with a period are no
longer displayed (reducing user confusion when viewing home directories
shared by Unix environments). Also, the AFS Client now works correctly
at sites using cross-realm trusts between a Unix based Kerberos realm
(MIT/Heimdal) and multi domain Windows Forests. Multi homed file servers
are now supported for use in complex network environments, and automatic
fail over to available server volumes added providing greater fault
tolerance for large scale installations and mission critical applications.
Support for AFS records in DNS has been added, so that the locations of
a site's AFS servers no longer need be specified in CellServDB files on
individual machines. This means that users can access new cells without
reconfiguring the client, and that changes in AFS server configurations
can be propagated transparently to clients without touching individual
workstations, and installation no longer requires inclusion of a site
specific server list in a local file.
Addition of Freelance Mode:
Freelance Mode allows users to start AFS on boot without access to their
home AFS cell. The volume loaded at AFS Client is maintained locally in
the registry without access to a cell. Whenever a user attempts to
contact an AFS path in a previously unknown cell, mount points and
symlinks are dynamically created and stored in the registry.
Improved Network Support for Mobile Users:
Support for network events and power management have been added and
enhanced. A Microsoft Loopback Adapter is now part of the installation,
resulting in improved stability for users of dynamically configured
networking devices, and allowing users to specify which network adapter
to use with AFS. The AFS Client is aware of the current state of the
network connection, and is able to start itself and prompt the user for
tokens as needed. Laptop users can thus now move about freely or change
network interfaces without having to reboot or restart the AFS service,
and the "hangs" associated with brief interruptions in network
Support for SMB/CIFS messaging has been extended, reducing hangs and
stalls in file transfers. File timestamps are reported entirely in UTC
resulting in improved stability in backup and syncing operations. The
Client Service now checks the versions of DLLs on startup to verify that
the code is from the same version, resulting in fewer problems after
upgrades. When an exception does occur, minidumps are created locally,
and can be created as needed via the command line. Also, although the
AFS client service provides crash reporting, the 1.4 release can also be
configured through an Active Directory policy to report crashes within
the domain for machines running XP and above.
Enhanced Central Administration:
An AFS Client Admins group is now created by the AFS installation,
allowing for the first time control over who can alter the configuration
of the AFS Client Service. All configuration data except the contents of
the CellServDB file (which is no longer required for access to sites
supporting AFS service records in DNS) are now stored in the Registry,
and are thus configurable via Active Directory Group Policies. An MSI is
also available for those who wish to deploy AFS or customize existing
installations for their users. Using integrated login, the network
provider can be configured to have different behavior depending on the
domain that the user logs into.
Supported Platforms: (! == new)
AIX 4.2, 4.3, 5.1!, 5,2!, 5.3!
HP-UX 11i (pa-risc), 11.22 (pa-risc), 11.23 (ia64)!
Solaris 7 (sparc,x86), 8 (sparc,x86), 9 (sparc,x86), 10! (sparc,x86,amd64)
MacOS X 10.3 (10.4 will be supported in the 1.4.1 release)
Microsoft Windows 2000, XP! (x86), 2003! (x86), 2003 R2! (x86)
Linux 2.4 kernel: x86, x86-uml, amd64, ia64, pa-risc!, ppc, ppc64!,
s390, s390x, sparc, sparc64
Linux 2.6 kernel: x86!, x86-uml!, amd64!, ia64!, ppc!, ppc64!,
OpenBSD (x86) 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 3.8
NetBSD (x86; server only) 1.5, 1.6, 2.0, 2.1, 3.0
FreeBSD (x86; server only) 4.7, 5.3, 6.0-beta
SGI Irix 6.5
OpenAFS 1.4.0 can be downloaded from the web at:
and via AFS at:
A Note of Thanks
The OpenAFS Gatekeepers wish to thank all of the individuals and
organizations that have contributed to the development of OpenAFS
over the last five years.
on behalf of the OpenAFS Gatekeepers
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