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Documentation for NFS features and conventions #744

theWebalyst opened this issue Feb 23, 2019 · 0 comments


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commented Feb 23, 2019

Despite having written a lot of code for it now, and having many discussions about it, there are things that are not clear about SAFE NFS use and implementation that are lacking explanation in documentation, which leads to difficulties using the API, and will ultimately cause incompatibilities between apps.

This issue is a request for a detailed explanations of how SAFE NFS is implemented along with how it is intended to be used. I will give a couple of examples that I've come across which have prompted me to open this, although I expect it isn't everything:

  • I've seen the Web Hosting Manager create sub-containers in places without any clarity over why. I thought they were bugs, but if not, there's an issue over helping developers to know what to expect and when to do this themselves. For example, depending on how you upload files for a website you can get either just one NFS container entry in _public, such as _public/<public-name>/root-<sub-name>/, or you can get that plus one or more additional containers on subpaths. It seems unusual that the way a user interacts with the UI should affect how many NFS container MDs are created and how many entries in _public are used up for identical websites. I made posts about this on the dev forum a long long time ago but I don't think anyone from Maidsafe has explained this. Here's a dev forum post where I raised this as well as trying to clarify the NFS API in the past.

  • just recently I read that you can have empty NFS directories, and that you can have NFS containers within an NFS container (which is how you achieve the former). I'm still not certain if this is in fact the case, because it isn't documented AFAIK and in the past I've asked about adding the ability to have empty directories to the NFS API, and Maidsafe have not previously told me the feature already exists. So this needs confirming, and some hints about when to use sub containers and when not etc. to help devs make these choices. See dev forum discussion

In both cases I realise things may depend on changes currently under discussion wrt Appendable Data and RDF, so I'm not really expecting much to happen - although brief answers about current status would be helpful.

In the mean time though I'm not really sure what I should cater for, or what features I should make use of, so clarifications would be appreciated.

This issue can at least act as a placeholder to ensure the questions are not forgotten.

Related issue: #700

@theWebalyst theWebalyst changed the title Documentation for NFS conventions Documentation for NFS features and conventions Feb 23, 2019

@m-cat m-cat added the documentation label Mar 12, 2019

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