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+NILFS2 is a log-structured file system (LFS) supporting continuous
+snapshotting. In addition to versioning capability of the entire file
+system, users can even restore files mistakenly overwritten or
+destroyed just a few seconds ago. Since NILFS2 can keep consistency
+like conventional LFS, it achieves quick recovery after system
+NILFS2 creates a number of checkpoints every few seconds or per
+synchronous write basis (unless there is no change). Users can select
+significant versions among continuously created checkpoints, and can
+change them into snapshots which will be preserved until they are
+changed back to checkpoints.
+There is no limit on the number of snapshots until the volume gets
+full. Each snapshot is mountable as a read-only file system
+concurrently with its writable mount, and this feature is convenient
+for online backup.
+The userland tools are included in nilfs-utils package, which is
+available from the following download page. At least "mkfs.nilfs2",
+"mount.nilfs2", "umount.nilfs2", and "nilfs_cleanerd" (so called
+cleaner or garbage collector) are required. Details on the tools are
+described in the man pages included in the package.
+Project web page: http://www.nilfs.org/en/
+Download page: http://www.nilfs.org/en/download.html
+Git tree web page: http://www.nilfs.org/git/
+List info: http://vger.kernel.org/vger-lists.html#linux-nilfs
+Features which NILFS2 does not support yet:
+ - atime
+ - extended attributes
+ - POSIX ACLs
+ - quotas
+ - fsck
+ - defragmentation
+NILFS2 supports the following mount options:
+(*) == default
+barrier(*) This enables/disables the use of write barriers. This
+nobarrier requires an IO stack which can support barriers, and
+ if nilfs gets an error on a barrier write, it will
+ disable again with a warning.
+errors=continue Keep going on a filesystem error.
+errors=remount-ro(*) Remount the filesystem read-only on an error.
+errors=panic Panic and halt the machine if an error occurs.
+cp=n Specify the checkpoint-number of the snapshot to be
+ mounted. Checkpoints and snapshots are listed by lscp
+ user command. Only the checkpoints marked as snapshot
+ are mountable with this option. Snapshot is read-only,
+ so a read-only mount option must be specified together.
+order=relaxed(*) Apply relaxed order semantics that allows modified data
+ blocks to be written to disk without making a
+ checkpoint if no metadata update is going. This mode
+ is equivalent to the ordered data mode of the ext3
+ filesystem except for the updates on data blocks still
+ conserve atomicity. This will improve synchronous
+ write performance for overwriting.
+order=strict Apply strict in-order semantics that preserves sequence
+ of all file operations including overwriting of data
+ blocks. That means, it is guaranteed that no
+ overtaking of events occurs in the recovered file
+ system after a crash.
+norecovery Disable recovery of the filesystem on mount.
+ This disables every write access on the device for
+ read-only mounts or snapshots. This option will fail
+ for r/w mounts on an unclean volume.
+discard This enables/disables the use of discard/TRIM commands.
+nodiscard(*) The discard/TRIM commands are sent to the underlying
+ block device when blocks are freed. This is useful
+ for SSD devices and sparse/thinly-provisioned LUNs.
+To use nilfs2 as a local file system, simply:
+ # mkfs -t nilfs2 /dev/block_device
+ # mount -t nilfs2 /dev/block_device /dir
+This will also invoke the cleaner through the mount helper program
+Checkpoints and snapshots are managed by the following commands.
+Their manpages are included in the nilfs-utils package above.
+ lscp list checkpoints or snapshots.
+ mkcp make a checkpoint or a snapshot.
+ chcp change an existing checkpoint to a snapshot or vice versa.
+ rmcp invalidate specified checkpoint(s).
+To mount a snapshot,
+ # mount -t nilfs2 -r -o cp=<cno> /dev/block_device /snap_dir
+where <cno> is the checkpoint number of the snapshot.
+To unmount the NILFS2 mount point or snapshot, simply:
+ # umount /dir
+Then, the cleaner daemon is automatically shut down by the umount
+helper program (umount.nilfs2).
+A nilfs2 volume is equally divided into a number of segments except
+for the super block (SB) and segment #0. A segment is the container
+of logs. Each log is composed of summary information blocks, payload
+blocks, and an optional super root block (SR):
+ | |SB| | Segment | Segment | Segment | ... | Segment | |
+ 0 +1K +4K +8M +16M +24M +(8MB x N)
+ . . (Typical offsets for 4KB-block)
+ . .
+ | log | log |... | log |
+ . .
+ . .
+ . .
+ | Summary | Payload blocks |SR|
+The payload blocks are organized per file, and each file consists of
+data blocks and B-tree node blocks:
+ |<--- File-A --->|<--- File-B --->|
+ | Data blocks | B-tree blocks | Data blocks | B-tree blocks | ...
+Since only the modified blocks are written in the log, it may have
+files without data blocks or B-tree node blocks.
+The organization of the blocks is recorded in the summary information
+blocks, which contains a header structure (nilfs_segment_summary), per
+file structures (nilfs_finfo), and per block structures (nilfs_binfo):
+ | Summary | finfo | binfo | ... | binfo | finfo | binfo | ... | binfo |...
+The logs include regular files, directory files, symbolic link files
+and several meta data files. The mata data files are the files used
+to maintain file system meta data. The current version of NILFS2 uses
+the following meta data files:
+ 1) Inode file (ifile) -- Stores on-disk inodes
+ 2) Checkpoint file (cpfile) -- Stores checkpoints
+ 3) Segment usage file (sufile) -- Stores allocation state of segments
+ 4) Data address translation file -- Maps virtual block numbers to usual
+ (DAT) block numbers. This file serves to
+ make on-disk blocks relocatable.
+The following figure shows a typical organization of the logs:
+ | Summary | regular file | file | ... | ifile | cpfile | sufile | DAT |SR|
+To stride over segment boundaries, this sequence of files may be split
+into multiple logs. The sequence of logs that should be treated as
+logically one log, is delimited with flags marked in the segment
+summary. The recovery code of nilfs2 looks this boundary information
+to ensure atomicity of updates.
+The super root block is inserted for every checkpoints. It includes
+three special inodes, inodes for the DAT, cpfile, and sufile. Inodes
+of regular files, directories, symlinks and other special files, are
+included in the ifile. The inode of ifile itself is included in the
+corresponding checkpoint entry in the cpfile. Thus, the hierarchy
+among NILFS2 files can be depicted as follows:
+ Super block (SB)
+ Super root block (the latest cno=xx)
+ |-- DAT
+ |-- sufile
+ `-- cpfile
+ |-- ifile (cno=c1)
+ |-- ifile (cno=c2) ---- file (ino=i1)
+ : : |-- file (ino=i2)
+ `-- ifile (cno=xx) |-- file (ino=i3)
+ : :
+ `-- file (ino=yy)
+ ( regular file, directory, or symlink )
+For detail on the format of each file, please see include/linux/nilfs2_fs.h.