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AFS Techologies Workshop

OpenAFS Newsletter, Issue 2, June 2009

Yay! This is the second issue of the OpenAFS newsletter. The newsletter summarizes what is happening in the OpenAFS community. This issue has coverage of the workshop.

As always, volunteers, patches, bug reports, or any other type of help is greatly appreciated.

Feedback on this newsletter is welcome. The goal is to summarize the various development efforts and news of OpenAFS for the community. Please let Jason Edgecombe <> know what you would like to see out of this newsletter.

The current and past issues of this newsletter are available at

General OpenAFS Progress

OpenAFS 1.4.11rc1 was released on June, 11, 2009. It's expected to be the last release from CVS. A transition to git will be made and 1.5.x releases will come from that, with the current CVS HEAD becoming the starting point for the next 1.5.x release. Tools will be needed and are being developed to work with git. We obviously seek people to help us with git (and gerrit) tools, the latter of which requires Java expertise. Many build system changes are in place in the new 1.5.x tree, most for the better.

Testers are wanted. Reports of success or failure of the release candidate should be sent to

OpenAFS 1.5.60 was released on May 31, 2009. Source and binaries are available from

The 1.5 branch is now dead. In preparation for the conversion to git, the CVS HEAD was purged of anything that is not on 1.5, and the 1.5 and HEAD branches were then synchronized. 1.5.61 will be cut from git once the head is officially converted.

Issues to look out for

Known issues in 1.4.10:

In Windows OpenAFS clients, iTunes can cause issues on 32bit Windows with cache sizes larger then 500MB

Ref: Bug# 124917


The Sixth Annual International AFS & Kerberos Best Practices Workshop was held at Stanford University on June 1-5, 2009.


Despite a slightly smaller than usual attendance, OpenAFS administrators and developers from a half dozen countries gathered at Stanford University the first week in June for the sixth annual AFS & Kerberos Best Practices Workshop. As always, there were full-day classes in the use and best practices of OpenAFS and Kerberos. Social activities included a fantastic evening at the Computer History Museum and a BBQ dinner. (Organizer Derrick Brashear commented, "No blows were exchanged." However, there was much beer consumed.)

Great talks over two and a half days ranged from status reports and updates on existing software to new toys, plus a repeat of last-year's favorite, the troubleshooting panel. Keynotes were given by Roland Dowdeswell, talking about how a hypothetical multi-national financial firm could use Kerberos in their world-wide infrastructure, and Jim Morris, talking about the origins of what's now called AFS. Slides from most talks are available from the website (

Plans are already underway for the seventh Workshop, to be held May 24-28, 2010, at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. We hope to see you there.


Disconnected AFS support

Project Contacts:

There have been no code changes since the last newsletter, although a number of people continue to test the code. Please consider trying it out, and share any experiences, good or bad. --Simon

There was no progress on my side. -- Dragos

Security Releases

Security Officer:

No security issues since 1.4.9, 1.4.10, and 1.5.59 were released in April 2009.

Fedora 11 and Linux 2.6.29 support

Project Contact:

Fedora 11 contains updates to the kernel and glibc which means that OpenAFS 1.4.10 will neither build, nor run correctly. Prebuilt binary and source RPMs containing the necessary patches are available from the OpenAFS website, or simply install and run 'yum install kmod-openafs openafs-client openafs-krb5' to install an OpenAFS client.

If you wish to use an existing source tarball on Fedora 11, then you will need to grab the deltas STABLE14-dprintf-rename-20090427 and STABLE14-linux26-defer-cred-changing-20090511 from . The forthcoming 1.4.11 release will contain both of these fixes.


Project Contact:

As has been heavily trailed, our change over from CVS to git for revision control is almost upon us. Along with the new revision control system, we also intend to make use of Google's gerrit code review tool. Gerrit will provide a mechanism by which anyone in the community may submit, review and comment upon forthcoming code changes. More details, and a sneak preview of what is to come, are available in

Binary Packaging

Project Contact:

With the arrival of Fedora 11, we say goodbye to Fedora 7. No new binary builds for OpenAFS on Fedora 7 will be produced. This is a significantly longer life than Fedora themselves provide for releases, but please do let us know if this will cause problems. We currently automatically build RPMs for all kernels on both ix86 and x86_64 architectures for Fedora 8, Fedora 9, Fedora 10, Fedora 11, RHEL4 and RHEL5. All these packages are available from the OpenAFS site.


Project Contact:

Progress is good. We have a second issue of the newsletter. I received positive feedback from multiple people. Even one of our very active contributors was surprised by how much was going on. This means that the newsletter is serving a valuable purpose.

FYI, the newsletters are writen in POD format and stored alongside the html files on the OpenAFS web site.

Google Summer of Code 2009

OpenAFS received four slots for the 2009 Google Summer of Code.

Go to for more information about the GSoC projects.

Three of the projects are still active. Unfortunately, one student had to back out.

The active student projects are:

OpenAFS Server Preference Based on Network Conditions

Student Developer: Jake Thebault-Spieker <>

Mentor: Derrick Brashear <>


Current work in re-ordering the server preferences list takes into account four things. Timeout time from the server, the round-trip time smoothed to allow for short-term network hiccups, and the ratio between packets send and the packets that needed to be resent. Work is still being done to decide how the rank should be scaled for each of these variables, but this may get pushed back until later, as the goal at this point is to get something working. Things in the pipeline: How this affects initial rank after boot-time, having the ranking be adjusted at some time interval, data available to be inferred from the application layers, and the windows client.

OpenAFS Management Console on Windows

Student Developer: Brant Gurganus <>

Mentor: Jeffrey Altman <>


I'm intending to make something available this week to make sure it's installing fine and so forth. Last week I didn't really do much since I was at the workshop, though it was nice to get a few questions about the project.

I've probably done more work prior to Google Summer of Code's official coding start time. In that time, I've researched how to tie the MMC framework to Windows Forms, how to install and register an MMC snap-in assembly, and simply looked into how the MMC framework is architected. I've also looked at authoring an MSC console.

(Ed: This was received on June 7, 2009)

Implementing OpenAFS Features into RedHat's kafs Kernel Module

Student Developer: Wang Lei <>

Mentor: David Howells <>


In brief, we have finished three kAFS pioctl operations and have several pioctls partially implemented. I have read some of the OpenAFS documents and I am becoming more familiar with kAFS and OpenAFS as the project progresses.

With the help of my mentor, I have built an environment with one OpenAFS server, one OpenAFS client and one kAFS client for development and testing, and I have become familiar with the tools and development environments, e.g. git and the formatting of kernel patches. I have learnt a lot about OpenAFS and dealing with open source projects, since the Linux kAFS GSoC project started. Next, I will work to accelerate the completion of the rest of the pioctl operations.

Workshop presentation on kAFS:

Kerberos v5 and Multiple Encryption Types

Project Contacts:

Rxk5 patches against 1.5.60 and 1.4.10 are available for folks who would like to try rxk5 in a test cell. (A number of sites have offered to do this.) We will provide assistance as needed. Marcus is working on a draft protocol description to be published in afs3-standardization. David Howells is beginning an implementation of rxk5 in kAFS.

*BSD Support

Project Contacts:

Support for OpenBSD 4.5 was -really- added. Build support for Freebsd 7.2 should appear shortly. Fixes for at least one outstanding locking issue on FreeBSD post 7.0 are being worked on. A NetBSD cache manager port is in progress.

Extended Callback Information

Project Contacts:

I've created preliminary patches against openafs-devel-1.5.x for extended callbacks and dependencies. There's still some testing work for the latest xcb changes, which added features over the previous milestone of Aug. 2008. I'll be publishing paths to patches and requests for review over the next few weeks.

Rx OSD integration & Raw Vicep Access in Clients

Project Contacts:

RXOSD is an extension for OpenAFS to allow file data to be put into dedicated "object storage", which is arbitrarly spread across servers. Among other things, this allows read/write replication of data. An enhancement to the basic object storage paradigm is the ability to transparently archive and restore data to and from HSM systems, similar to the way MR-AFS used to facilitate. Hartmut Reuter and Christof Hanke (both RZG) and Felix Frank (DESY) work on the integration of this extension of OpenAFS. Patches submitted to the OpenAFS-Gatekeepers are aimed to be small and amount to no more than one change each. Everyone interested in RXOSD and/or its integration into OpenAFS is cordially invited to send an email to the integrators or the openafs-info mailing list.


Concerning vicep-access I can tell you that this will come into OpenAFS along with RXOSD because it's just another protocol supported by the restructured client. However, it's ifdefed and configured separately so that it could be used independently from RXOSD. But, of course, it makes more sense to use it along with RXOSD because filesystems such as Lustre and GPFS are good for large files, but slow for file creation and deletion. So you would prefer to keep the small files in the fileserver's local partition.

Workshop Presentation on vicep direct access:

Better Documentation

Project Contacts:

Thanks to contributions from Steven Jenkins and Mike Robinson of End Point, our man page coverage is now essentially complete. Every OpenAFS command has a corresponding man page.

Thanks to Jeff Altman of Your File System, Inc., the old IBM architecture and protocol documentation has been converted to header files with Doxygen comments, allowing us to generate that documentation from editable source and eventually better integrate it with the OpenAFS source. This work was funded under a SBIR grant.

The build system for the OpenAFS manuals has been overhauled to use more current tools. We now generate Windows Help files from the same source as well as much better HTML and PDF output and get the version number for the manual from the OpenAFS build system.

Thanks to edits by Jason Edgecombe and reviews by Jeffrey Altman and Russ Allbery, chapter 1 of the Admin Guide has been updated to give warnings about kaserver and include Kerberos 5.

Resolved Tickets

Here is a list of tickets that have been resolved since May 1, 2009:

  ticket # state     created       title
    20947: resolved  Aug 18, 2005  Better cache partition checks in afsd
    23750: resolved  Nov 29, 2005  1.4.0 client crash
    60275: resolved  Apr 25, 2007  'make dest' fails to create man dir + manpages
   124130: resolved  Jan 14, 2009  Convert MR-AFS Residency Command to Rx OSD
   124359: resolved  Feb 13, 2009  Read-write volume corruption on openafs 1.5.x
   124514: resolved  Mar 19, 2009  OpenAFS 1.4.9 milestone
   124522: resolved  Mar 20, 2009  krb5 platform build defaults
   124551: resolved  Mar 28, 2009  [PATCH] encryption for PTS queries
   124552: resolved  Mar 28, 2009  [PATCH] Use $AFS_POST_INIT in Red Hat initscript if defined
   124563: resolved  Mar 31, 2009  Print unsigned values as such in rxdebug
   124569: resolved  Mar 31, 2009  fbsd 1.5.x sig_t old typo
   124581: resolved  Apr 02, 2009  stack overflow afs_GetDownD
   124627: resolved  Apr 15, 2009  Re: [OpenAFS-devel] Cache inconsistency in client 1.4.8 and above
   124671: resolved  Apr 22, 2009  Handling last store of dirty pages with memcache
   124681: resolved  Apr 23, 2009  patch for building on freebsd5.5
   124709: resolved  Apr 28, 2009  linux26 issue with pagsh.krb and Pag location in group list
   124715: resolved  Apr 30, 2009  minor path remods for src/tests; refactor of src/tests/ to use new style
   124716: resolved  Apr 30, 2009  src/tests/OpenAFS/ should be cvs remove'd
   124719: resolved  May 01, 2009  obsd 44 and 45
   124725: resolved  May 04, 2009  Please pull up XML documentation
   124737: resolved  May 05, 2009  periodic kernel panic - linux / OpenAFS 1.4.10
   124742: resolved  May 06, 2009  AFS Explorer Shell IsPathInAFS broken for dead-end symlinks
   124770: resolved  May 12, 2009  1.5 build fix: mmap patch fallout
   124776: resolved  May 15, 2009  "vos partinfo" gives wrong output on windows.
   124787: resolved  May 18, 2009  AFS client 1.5.59 crashing with "Unhandled exception" on Windows 2003
   124788: resolved  May 18, 2009  compile_et man page
   124789: resolved  May 18, 2009  add copyauth man page
   124790: resolved  May 18, 2009  fs monitor man page
   124791: resolved  May 18, 2009  man page for restorevol
   124792: resolved  May 18, 2009  man page for rmtsysd
   124793: resolved  May 18, 2009  man page for vsys
   124794: resolved  May 18, 2009  fix CellServDB man page coveraged of -dynroot
   124799: resolved  May 18, 2009  fix .krb commands
   124800: resolved  May 18, 2009  New man pages for Windows installer
   124810: resolved  May 26, 2009  errno compile error in JAVA source
   124878: resolved  May 27, 2009  crash dump from Windows XP (32-bit) and 1.5.59 client
   124880: resolved  May 27, 2009  Add -rxmaxmtu parameter to afsd to help avoid VPN fragmentation of UDP packets
   124891: resolved  Jun 01, 2009  CellServDB parsing subject to buffer overflows
   124893: resolved  Jun 02, 2009  ptserver debug flag correction
   124894: resolved  Jun 02, 2009  ptprocs vicelog newlines and loglevels
   124898: resolved  Jun 03, 2009  src/aklog/klog.c uninitialized variable tofree
   124910: resolved  Jun 08, 2009  Windows: cm_cell_t lists not properly protected by cm_cellLock

CVS statistics

The CVS statistics have been removed for now. The HEAD branch has been synchronized with the 1.5 branch in preparation fo the git transition. The 1.5 branch is now dead.