What method is best to use for mounting a NFS share
from another machine? Mount using /etc/fstab entry or Mount using autofs?
what is the difference between them?
Autofs , is auto mounting filesystem on demand like when ever you need it.
NFS is like mounting a complete partition remotely and you will have availability of whole content of the partition.
But there are few advantages with autofs over nfs
Advantages of AutoFS
1 Shares are accessed automatically and transparently when a user tries to access any files or directories under the designated mount point of the remote filesystem to be mounted.
2 Booting time is significantly reduced because no mounting is done at boot time.
3 Network access and efficiency are improved by reducing the number of permanently active mount points.
4 Failed mount requests can be reduced by designating alternate servers as the source of a filesystem.
The difference will affect you when the machine boots up (like after a reboot). Your NFS mount will not be present. With some Operating Systems the machine will not boot.
/etc/fstab is read early in the boot sequence to mount filesystems
autofs is a daemon started later in the boot sequence. At a high level:
- First your filesystems are mounted from
- Next, your network is brought online
- Subsequently, the automounter daemon
I have seen a machine unable to boot because someone added the following to
The machine tried and failed to load that NFS mount point because the network service had not yet started.