About

FraunhoferFS (short: FhGFS) is the high-performance parallel file system from the Fraunhofer Competence Center for High Performance Computing. The distributed metadata architecture of FhGFS has been designed to provide the scalability and flexibility that is required to run today's most demanding HPC applications.

Key Benefits

  • Distributed File Contents and Metadata: One of the most fundamental concepts of FhGFS is the strict avoidance of architectural bottle necks. Striping file contents across multiple storage servers is only one part of this concept. Another important aspect is the distribution of file system metadata (e.g. directory information) across multiple metadata servers. Large systems and metadata intensive applications in general can greatly profit from the latter feature.
  • HPC Technologies: Built on scalable multithreaded core components with native Infiniband support, file system nodes can serve Infiniband and Ethernet (or any other TCP-enabled network) connections at the same time and automatically switch to a redundant connection path in case any of them fails.
  • Easy to use: FhGFS requires no kernel patches (the client is a patchless kernel module, the server components are userspace daemons), comes with graphical cluster installation tools and allows you to add more clients and servers to the running system whenever you want it.
  • Client and Servers on any Machine: No specific enterprise Linux distribution or other special environment is required to run FhGFS. FhGFS client and servers can even run on the same machine to enable performance increases for small clusters or networks. FhGFS requires no dedicated file system partition on the servers - It uses existing partitions, formatted with any of the standard Linux file systems, e.g. XFS or ext4. For larger networks, it is also possible to create several distinct FhGFS file system partitions with different configurations.
  • Increased Coherency (compared to simple remote file systems like NFS): FhGFS provides a coherent mode, in which it is guaranteed that changes to a file or directory by one client are always immediately visible to other clients.