Combining directories from multiple servers on a single mountpoint
Many to One
With some simple tuning, SSHFS performance is comparable to NFS almost across the board. In an effort to get even more performance from SSHFS, we examine SSHFS-MUX, which allows you to combine directories from multiple servers into a single mountpoint.
SSHFS is a userspace filesystem that allows you to mount a remote filesystem via SFTP over SSH using the FUSE library . It is a very cool concept for a shared filesystem with reasonable security courtesy of SSH. Although the encryption and decryption processes increase CPU usage on both the server and client, a few tuning techniques will bring performance fairly close to NFS .
FUSE filesystems are easy to write and maintain compared with kernel-based filesystems, leading to their proliferation. One, SSHFS-MUX , builds on SSHFS to allow you to combine directories from different hosts into a single mountpoint (Figure 1). "MUX" is short for multiplexer, which generically allows the device to select one of several input signals and forward it as a single output from the mux.
Although SSHFS-MUX (SSHFSM) might generate some yawns, "muxing" directories is actually very powerful. To illustrate this power, I'll look at a situation in which I'm a user on a system with my
/home/layton directory on my local system (host = desktop). I also access an HPC system that has its own
/home/jlayton directory (the login node is login1).
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