OpenAFS is a freely available implementation of the distributed filesystem known as AFS (the Andrew File System), which works on Unix, Windows, and MacOS X. These notes outline the very easy installation and configuration of OpenAFS on MacOS X, along with a comparison to how things are done on other Unix installations.
Last updated: 2 October 2009
OpenAFS is a freely available implementation of AFS (the Andrew File System), a distributed filesystem originally developed by Carnegie Mellon University and Transarc Corporation (now IBM Pittsburgh Labs). OpenAFS provides a scalable, location independent, client-server architecture for sharing files across both a local network domain and across the entire Internet. More detailed information about OpenAFS is available from www.openafs.org.
OpenAFS runs on a wide range of platfroms, which includes Windows NT/2000, just about every popular flavour of Unix, and MacOS X. Installation of OpenAFS is almost as easy as installing most other software packages for Mac OS X. These notes outline the steps required for installation and compare it to the configuration of AFS on other Unix platforms.
As of January 2005 the latest stable release of OpenAFS won't mount on my MacOS X 10.3.6 machine, due to problems with the mountpoint /Network/afs . I have found that the latest developmnet release (version 1.3.79) works fine.
The software is packaged as a gzip'd tar file containing an Installer package. On MacOS X this should automatically unpack itself when downloaded, leaving the Installer package on the desktop called OpenAFS.pkg If it does not unpack automatically then double-click on the file and that should uncompress it and extract the package.
You can't create or edit system files in /var/db using GUI tools on MacOS X, so the simplest way I've found to create this file is to open the Terminal application and give a command like:
echo openafs.org > /var/db/openafs/etc/ThisCellUse a different cell name, like physastro.vassar.edu or umich.edu in place of openafs.org to join that particular cell.
When the machine comes up again there should be an icon on the desktop for a Network Volume called AFS. The icon may also appear in the sidebar of any Finder window you open. You can control whether or not the icon appears in both places in the Preferences menu for the Finder.
Each AFS cell appears as a folder on this Network Volume. Each cell can also be accessed via the command line under the directory path /afs. Again, keep in mind that not all cells are open for public viewing.
|AFS Item||Unix||Mac OS X|