Help on istalling NFS
ckosloff
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Joined: 21 Dec 2011
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Location: South Florida
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Hi all,

I have two computers and I need them networked because each performs different tasks.
Computer 1) is a wired desktop with printer, OS debian stable + backports, could never install scanning software because it reports segmentation fault.
Computer 2) is a laptop same OS debian stable + backports, scanning software installed fine, which is weird, this one is connected via wifi.
For job purposes I need to scan documents and upload to a control panel, sometimes print, so I need to share.
I could never find a tutorial to install NFS on Debian, either they are obsolete or don't apply, and I think that samba would be overkill so please help.
Thank you.
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techAdmin
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Joined: 26 Sep 2003
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Location: East Coast, West Coast? I know it's one of them.
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I don't think samba would be overkill, but nfs is easier to setup.

I've never heard of scanner stuff in connection to nfs, nfs just shares machines across a network.

you have to have all the nfs packages installed, basically once you set it up once, it works fine for most but not all uses thereafter.

any machine that is serving nfs shares has to have nfs-kernel-server or whatever the package name is, and any client has to have the client stuff, I don't setup nfs much since once it's setup it runs, with maybe a fix or two for major version changes like 3 to 4, which involved some issues. You have to understand local networking, which I'm not going to teach you if you don't know that, you have to know how to find machines on the network, all that stuff, the machine that is serving has to be listening, which I think is automatic once the nfs kernel server daemon is running.

there's tons of howtos, i never had any problem finding the docs for how to set it up, but there is a learning curve. nfs has not changed very much over the years, it used to be I believe a Sun microsystems product, but it's been open source for years, but it's such a basic network machine file sharing tool that most of the work goes into samba, which is used by everything.

scanner issues have zero relationship to this, the core linux scanner/printer stuff has always sucked, and sucks today just like it always has. There is only one way that you can have a decent printer or scanner experience, for scanners, it's making sure your scanner is 100% supported on the xsane scanner database, same for printers, except that is cups.

If you didn't find any docs you found understandable, the obvious solution is to document your own journey and share it for others who might hit the same things they don't know, but you can't really write complete lan networking docs because you have to assume some technical abilities to start or else it's like trying to write a book for people who know nothing about anything, about something very technical, that's not a type of documentation you will find very often to be honest because it's very hard to write, and does almost no good since people who don't know how to do much with computers don't know how to find docs to learn either as a rule, making the entire enterprise a waste of time.

but for average linux users, the nfs docs are clear and fairly easy to follow, assuming you find the right one.

take a look at arch docs, they tend to be good, if a bit too geeky, but they are often decent.
wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/NFS

basically if you hit stuff you don't understand there, and of course, arch uses different package names than debian, then learn the stuff you don't understand, and away you go.

actually there's a lot of silly crap in that arch nfs howto, it's really silly and overgeeky.

basically you assign on the server the network share in the nfs config file, you stop the nfs-kernel-server, you start it, it reads the added share, you also set the right permissions, then you have your other machines know how to find the nfs server, and connect to it, either automatically, which is risky because linux and nfs do not do well together, if nfs is removed while client is running, and then you try to use the client, the kernel starts freaking out because it doesn't know where the nfs file system is.

samba is a lot easier to deal with imo, but harder to setup.

I'm not doing a howto here, no interest, but these are some gotchas I see often using nfs, which I've done for ages.

Debian has one which I'm sure is much less silly than the arch version:
wiki.debian.org/NFSServerSetup

you don't need the portmap stuff with current nfs servers. You want the nfs v4 part, ignore the 2 and 3, those are ancient.
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ckosloff
Status: Contributor
Joined: 21 Dec 2011
Posts: 292
Location: South Florida
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I very well understand that scanner stuff is irrelevant in this context, just wanted to explain why I need two machines as scanner software from repo does not work on main desktop, throws segfault, which it doesn't in laptop with same OS, I could never find the source of the segfault.
Will try to install NFS, I think there are some instructions in the Debian Handbook, if problems will be back here, will check out your resources as well.
Thanks for the lengthy and detailed response.
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