The Kernel View of File Systems

To isolate the rest of the kernel from the type-specific structures used by various file system types, a Virtual File System (VFS) abstraction layer is employed. Figure 8-11 gives us an overview of the VFS components.

Figure 8-11. Kernel File System Tables

The VFS abstraction layer was first introduced to UNIX by Sun Microsystems engineers while they were developing the Network File System (NFS). They wanted local users and applications to be oblivious to the actual location of the files they were using. Current UNIX operating systems frequently build on this approach to masquerade the specifics of local and remote ...

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