Linux 101 : Sharing files over NFS

With NFS we can mount directories from the remote NFS server so that they appear as a local partition on the NFS client.

We can define client access to the NFS server storage through the /etc/exports file.

On NFS server we write for example the below line in the /etc/exports file:

  • /data : is the directory on the server that we want the clients to use. 
  • the IP address of the NFS client accessing the server resources.
  • rw : gives the clients read/write permissions on directory.
  • sync : synchronizes changes to disk before serving data.
The default NFS values, if none are mentioned, are:
  • ro : for read-only access.
  • root_squash : to prevent clients from logging in as "root" on the server. 

The no_root_squash enables "root" actions on the server.

To give access to a whole network of clients, we add the below lines in the /etc/exports file on the NFS server:


No space between the address and the access rights rw,sync, otherwise access will be granted to everybody.

The next step is to run the below command on the server:

  • r flag : to synchronize the file system
  • a flag : means all directories.
To check our exported directories, we use the below command:

On our client, we create a mount point for the remote directory:

And we mount the exported directories on it the newly created mount point:

- : is the server's IP address.

We unmount the NFS remote directory using the below:

To allow our share to be mounted automatically, we could add it in the client's /etc/fstab file as below:

nfs is the filesystem type.


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