Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 14:12 UTC, submitted by diegocg
General Unix HP has announced that they will open source the AdvFS under the second version of the GPL. AdvFS is a mid-90's file system that is used by the Tru64 UNIX operating system. The Wikipedia page on AdvFS provides the necessary background information and feature set of the AdvFS file system.
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Excellent News
by mattst88 on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 16:19 UTC
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This is excellent news. Let's hope it's implemented in the Linux kernel.

I also hope the Linux implementation will be compatible with the Tru64 implementation so that we don't have another XFS-like on disk incompatibility.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Excellent News
by diegocg on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 17:12 UTC in reply to "Excellent News"
diegocg Member since:

Its not clear if they'll integrate it in linux.

In case its not clear, this is a GPLv2 technology release, not an actual port to Linux. We're hoping that the code and documentation will be helpful in the development of new file systems for Linux that will provide similar capabilities, and perhaps used to make tweaks to existing file systems. We'll get the tests posted soon.


But in you can read that they're releasing two generations of advfs source code: "The first generation is the version that is currently shipping on Tru64 which represents a well tested enterprise quality file system that has been deployed worldwide for many years. The second generation is a port [to Linux] that was completed a few years ago but never productized."

So it's not clear that they're doing anything with this code. For now, they've just packed up the source and put it in a website. But how useful would be to release this code if they're not planning to port it to linux?

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Excellent News
by wazoox on Tue 24th Jun 2008 13:14 UTC in reply to "RE: Excellent News"
wazoox Member since:

I've downloaded this stuff and AdvFS v2 is actually a port to HP-UX, not Linux. There aren't any makefiles, and though the userland part may compile quite easily under Linux (not tested though) the kernel part is a tougher one...

Reply Score: 2

Comment by diegocg
by diegocg on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 17:06 UTC
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There's already a website with liks to the code that i didn't notice when i sent the news -

Apparently, advfs has a ZFS-like concept of "storage pool" and snapshots. It's interesting to know that such ideas already existed long time ago (in fact competing with tru64 was probably the reason ZFS was born). In other places it seems inferior, for example journaling, which ZFS doesn't use.

Edited 2008-06-23 17:22 UTC

Reply Score: 3

I wonder if this move is to allow...
by IridiumAlly on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 17:14 UTC
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HP to compete with Sun's ZFS file system. If HP can get their file system into the kernel before Sun can GPL ZFS then HP will have some bragging rights.

Reply Score: 3

by pysiak on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 18:43 UTC
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The wikipedia articles mentions a cool feature:
- high performance

Now this is a truly uncommon thing to have / advertise ;-)

Even better you don't actually give numbers.

Reply Score: 2

by jwwf on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 18:45 UTC
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This is really cool. On first glance the code is both huge and respectably commented. I wonder if / when someone will attempt a port, and if any layers will be violated. (Ducks and covers! ;) )

Also, I wonder if there are Veritas IP issues. I saw in some Compaq docs that LSM was VxVM derived, so I wonder if pieces are missing? Regardless, I heard a rumor that VxVM would be open sourced. Since hell just froze over here, who knows?

Would love to dig around all day. Too bad I have a real job! ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE: Awesome
by shotsman on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 20:18 UTC in reply to "Awesome"
shotsman Member since:

LSM is/was a layer that sits beteen ADVFS and the block I/O device files.They are separate products. You could always run ADVFS directly on the partition. If you wanted RAID features you use LSM (Logical storage manager) in between.
There should not be any Veritas code in ADVFS

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Awesome
by jwwf on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 20:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Awesome"
jwwf Member since:

Yep. Should have read the hitchhikers guide they posted before I posted. I had always thought they were tightly integrated, but not so. Of course, I only ever used Tru64 as an end user...

Reply Score: 3

by madcrow on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 20:43 UTC
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It's like ZFS, only it came out 15 years earlier. This makes one wonder why exactly everybody was acting like ZFS was/is so innovative when it point of fact, it looks like it was just a clone of something good old DEC was doing in the early-mid 90s.

Edited 2008-06-23 20:45 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Wow...
by jwwf on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 21:01 UTC in reply to "Wow..."
jwwf Member since:

It's like ZFS, only it came out 15 years earlier. This makes one wonder why exactly everybody was acting like ZFS was/is so innovative when it point of fact, it looks like it was just a clone of something good old DEC was doing in the early-mid 90s.

It's because, sadly, this is too late. If HP had done this 3 to 5 years ago, say when they canned the HP-UX port, ZFS would have been less exciting as open source.

ZFS passingly resembles NetApp's WAFL, too. The difference is availability, not the buzz word, but the fact that it is here, it works, and anyone is allowed to use it for free. The same argument that people use for Linux all the time.

Storage management is my favorite part of UNIX. But even I recognize two things: 'Works reliably' is the best feature, and selling storage management for UNIX in a closed model is so 1995, when AdvFS and XFS were new and exciting. ZFS works and it's not closed. WAFL works, but it's closed, and AdvFS is open, but it doesn't work (on linux).

This is really cool, I hope someone ports it, and I will enjoy perusing the code. But if HP really wanted to do something serious for linux storage, they would release the Polyserve code they bought.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Wow...
by akro on Mon 23rd Jun 2008 23:57 UTC in reply to "RE: Wow..."
akro Member since:

Well with as many Polyserve isntalls I have done lately I doubt we will see it open source anytime soon. However ADV-FS does have a DLM as it was the core of trucluster. So I am guessing the plumbing is there for a CFS Linux implimentation....

Reply Score: 1