System Administration Guide: Devices and File Systems

Automounting or AutoFS

You can mount NFS file system resources by using a client-side service called automounting (or AutoFS). AutoFS enables a system to automatically mount and unmount NFS resources whenever you access them. The resource remains mounted as long as you remain in the directory and are using a file within that directory. If the resource is not accessed for a certain period of time, it is automatically unmounted.

AutoFS provides the following features:

The AutoFS service is initialized by the automount utility, which runs automatically when a system is booted. The automountd daemon runs continuously and is responsible for the mounting and unmounting of NFS file systems on an as-needed basis. By default, the /home file system is mounted by the automount daemon.

With AutoFS, you can specify multiple servers to provide the same file system. This way, if one of these servers is down, AutoFS can try to mount the file system from another machine.

For complete information on how to set up and administer AutoFS, see System Administration Guide: IP Services.