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NFS Tuning Secrets, or, Why Does "Sync" Do Two Different Things?

I'm often asked to rescue situations where NFS is working too slowly
for people's liking. Sometimes the answer is pointing out that NFS is
already running as fast as the hardware will allow it. Sometimes the
answer involves undoing some clever "tuning improvements" that have
been performed in the name of "increasing performance". Every now
and again, there's an actual NFS bug that needs fixing.

This talk will distill that experience, and give guidance on the
right way to tune Linux NFS servers and clients. I talked a little
about this last year, in the context of tuning performed by SGI's
NAS Server product. This year I'll expand on the subject and give
direct practical advice.

I'll cover the fundamental hardware and software limits of NFS
performance, so you can tell if there's any room for improvement.
I'll mention some of the more dangerous or slow "improvements" you
could make by tuning unwisely. I'll explain how some of the more
obscure tuning options work, so you can see why and how they need to be
tuned. I'll even cover some bugs which can cause performance problems.

After hearing this talk, you'll leave the room feeling rightfully
confident in your ability to tune NFS in the field.

Plus, you'll have a warm fuzzy feeling about NFS and how simple and
obvious it is. Sorry, just kidding about that last bit.

Project: Linux NFS 


Greg Banks

Greg is a senior software engineer in SGI's FIle Serving Technologies group in Melbourne. He's been working with Linux NFS at SGI for five years, submitted his first kernel patch in 1999, and installed his first Linux machine in 1995. He's been a professional Unix application programmer since 1990.

Greg Banks

Greg is a senior software engineer in SGI's FIle Serving Technologies group in Melbourne. He's been working with Linux NFS at SGI for five years, submitted his first kernel patch in 1999, and installed his first Linux machine in 1995. He's been a professional Unix application programmer since 1990.

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