[Mailman-Users] Mailman on Solaris-based web server

Brad Knowles brad at stop.mail-abuse.org
Thu Oct 21 21:43:15 CEST 2004

At 7:08 PM +0100 2004-10-21, Richard Barrett wrote:

>  I have been warned by experts that NFS locking could be a problem with
>  this way of working but thus far it has not proven to be a problem.

	Locking is the bane of any administrator using NFS.  Nick 
Christenson wrote a seminal paper on how to build a scalable mail 
system using NFS as the message store (see 
<http://www.jetcafe.org/~npc/doc/mail_arch.html>).  It's hard to do 
the same kind of thing in an IMAP environment -- the only IMAP server 
I know of that uses Maildir (a storage format that is supposedly 
NFS-friendly) is Courier-IMAP, and it has some serious scalability 

	For large-scale systems, this is a real PITA.

>  The only problems I have had with Linux and NFS is due to what I believe
>  to be a kernel lock handling problem on Linux.

	Cross-platform NFS server/client environments are usually the 
worst possible thing you can do.  NFS appliance vendors like NetApp 
work very hard to make their products compatible with the broadest 
array of client OSes, and even they can't satisfy everyone.

	In my experience, this is the single most difficult/impossible 
problem to solve in an NFS environment.

Brad Knowles, <brad at stop.mail-abuse.org>

"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little
temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

     -- Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), reply of the Pennsylvania
     Assembly to the Governor, November 11, 1755

   SAGE member since 1995.  See <http://www.sage.org/> for more info.

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