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PLFS is a parallel virtual file system that rearranges random, concurrent writes into sequential writes to unique files (i.e. N-1 into N-N). Available under LANL LA-CC-08-104.
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README

###############################################################################
          PLFS: A Checkpoint Filesystem for Parallel Applications
###############################################################################

PLFS is a parallel virtual file system that rearranges random, concurrent
writes into sequential writes to unique files (i.e. N-1 into N-N). This
rearrangment allows write access patterns to be optimized for the underlying
file system.

Additional info:
http://institutes.lanl.gov/plfs. Available under LANL LA-CC-08-104.

Email plfs-users@lists.sourceforge.net with any user questions.
Email plfs-devel@lists.sourceforge.net with any developer questions.


***************************************************************************
What's New
***************************************************************************

A list of new features and bug fixes for each release is maintained in
Changelog. Please refer to that file for more information on what changes in
PLFS between releases.


***************************************************************************
Installing PLFS
***************************************************************************

For building and installation instructions, please see README.install.


***************************************************************************
Using PLFS
***************************************************************************

There are three ways to use PLFS: through the FUSE system, through MPI/IO, and
through the PLFS API.


*** Mounting a PLFS file system using FUSE: ***

1) Build and install PLFS with FUSE support (please see README.install)
2) Make sure your plfsrc file is correct by using plfs_check_config. In order
   to quickly create the needed directories, use 'plfs_check_config -mkdir'.
3) Launch the PLFS daemon (which calls fusermount):
   plfs /path/to/mount
4) The PLFS daemon can be killed via fusermount:
   fusermount -u /path/to/mount

/path/to/mount can now be used as any POSIX file system. To check FUSE stats
and make sure everything is working, run the following:
cat /path/to/mount/.plfsdebug

NOTE: The plfs binary does not check the existence of backend directories;
only the existence of the mount point directory is checked. Therefore it is
possible to successfully run plfs even if plfs_check_config reports that there
are missing backends. If plfs is started on a mount point that is missing
backends, the mount point will not be usable. As soon as all of the backends
are available, the plfs mount point will be usable (no restart is necessary).

NOTE: Not checking for the existence of backend directories is
done to make mounting plfs scalable on a large cluster. If plfs is configured
to start at boot time and plfs checks backend directories when it is started,
this could result in thousands or millions (or more) of stat calls to the
underlying filesystem in a very short period of time.

NOTE on the above NOTES: Not checking backend directories only applies to
fuse's actual mount command; plfs will not check the existence of backend
directories during that call. However, it is possible for fuse to issue
additional calls on the mount point, such as statfs, when
'plfs <mount point>' is executed on the command line. These calls will fail
and it may not be possible to mount plfs without the backend directories
for those versions/implementations of fuse. It is possible to see what
commands fuse makes when running 'plfs <mount point>' by using strace.

Several options can be passed to the plfs binary that are passed on to the FUSE
system. Use the plfs binary's -o command line parameter. Use 'plfs -h' to see
all options that can be passed. Some useful ones are:
allow_other   : if mounting as root, this allows others to use plfs
big_writes    : newer versions of fuse can break writes into 128K chunks 
direct_io     : older versions can too, but then mmap doesn't work
auto_cache    : if you are writing to PLFS through MPI-IO or PLFS-API and you want
                to read from a PLFS FUSE, then use this flag

Example:
plfs -o big_writes,allow_other /path/to/mount


*** Using PLFS as a ROMIO ADIO layer for MPI/IO ***

Please see mpi_adio/README for information on using PLFS as a ROMIO ADIO layer.


*** Using the PLFS API ***

1) Build and install the PLFS library. Verify your plfsrc file is correct by
   using plfs_check_config.
2) Look at plfs.h to become familar with the PLFS API.
3) Modify application source to use the PLFS API. Basically, you just change
   opens to plfs_opens, etc.
4) Link the PLFS library to your application at compile time. Please see the
   linking requirements in using PLFS as a ROMIO ADIO layer for what the
   linking command should look like.

*** For an example of an application ported to use the PLFS native API, see
    the open source LANL fs_test at: https://github.com/fs-test/fs_test


***************************************************************************
Other Info
***************************************************************************

For information on PLFS's POSIX-compliance, please see README.POSIX.

Information about the logging capabilities of PLFS is contained in
README.mlog. Please see that file for more information about getting log
information from PLFS.

Information for developers, such as rules for coding and working with the
source repository, is contained in README.developer.


***************************************************************************
Testing
***************************************************************************

Some functionality tests are provided in the 'tests' directory. Please see and
use tests/Tester.tcsh.

A regression suite is also available for PLFS, but is not included in the
normal source tree for PLFS. It is included in the PLFS project on github:

https://github.com/plfs/plfs-regression

The following command should be sufficient to check out the regression suite,
but if there are any problems, please look at the above URL and follow the
directions there for getting the regression suite:

git clone git@github.com:plfs/plfs-regression.git

The regression suite is kept up-to-date with PLFS's master branch. As working
with PLFS changes, the regression suite changes. This means that the regression
suite's master branch may not work with a particular PLFS release if there has
been significant divergence in source tree layout and PLFS configuration
capabilities between the release and master branch. As PLFS does a release, the
regression suite will be tagged with that release. Thus, it is possible to use
git to get the regression suite in to a state that should work with a
particular release if the master branch no longer works with that release.

The regression suite has its own set of documentation, so please refer to its
README for further information.
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