[OpenAFS] OpenAFS in the ISP environment. A good idea...

Derrick J Brashear shadow@dementia.org
Thu, 6 Mar 2003 10:50:01 -0500 (EST)

On Thu, 6 Mar 2003, Leland J. Steinke wrote:

> I doubt that the ratio of clients (SMTP, POP, FTP, and web servers) to OpenAFS 
> servers will ever get above 2:1, if that might be an issue.

I had an ISP friend I planned to do this for, but at the time licensing
AFS was hard, so it never happened.

> 1)  Is this a "Good Idea" or are we setting ourselves up for a disaster due to 
> performance/scalability issues?  AFS seems much more stable than more recent 
> distributed file systems and much more scalable than NFS or Samba.  The main AFS 
> clients and servers will be RedHat Linux 7.3 or 8.X boxes.

I find RedHat 8 questionable because of the "kernel of the week".
Otherwise I think it's a reasonable plan.

> 2)  How many volumes can we reasonably expect to fit in a single cell?  Earlier 
> discussions mentioned 40K, 60K, and 100K+ volumes per cell;  we would be looking 
> at few, if any, backup volumes and most volumes will be read/write.  A related 
> question is how many volumes can fit on a single disk partition before things 
> start to break?  archov-doc.pdf mentions a maximum of 3500, but that document is 
> over ten years old.

How much data will the volumes have, how big are the partitions, and how
much overcommitting do you want to do?

Lease space for the backup volume clones (a complete turnover could cause
a 100% greater disk usage if the quota was used up and then entirely
turned over the contents, but that's not worth worrying about)

> 3)  What is the status and future of OpenAFS, if my reading of IBM's 
> discontinuation of support for AFS is correct?  Is AFS a technology just waiting 
> to explode across the Internet (I saw Avi Freedman's endorsement of AFS over NFS 
> in the premier issue of ACM Queue this month.) or is it a niche technology 
> looking for the right time to die?

You're asking in the wrong place. Rosy glasses and such.

I think AFS's future depends if we can get the Windows client world
happier than it is now. We've been doing ok keeping up with MacOS and the
unix platforms.