Scroll to navigation

VLSERVER(8) AFS Command Reference VLSERVER(8)


vlserver - Initializes the Volume Location Server


vlserver [-noauth] [-smallmem]
[-p <number of threads>] [-nojumbo]
[-jumbo] [-rxbind]
[-d <debug level>]
[-rxmaxmtu <bytes>]
[-trace <trace file>]
[-database | -db <database path>]
[-logfile <log file>]
[-config <configuration path>]
[-enable_peer_stats] [-enable_process_stats]
[-auditlog <log path>]
[-audit-interface (file | sysvmq)]
[-restricted_query (anyuser | admin)]


The vlserver command initializes the Volume Location (VL) Server, which runs on every database server machine. In the conventional configuration, its binary file is located in the /usr/lib/openafs directory on a file server machine.

The vlserver command is not normally issued at the command shell prompt but rather placed into a file server machine's /etc/openafs/BosConfig file with the bos create command. If it is ever issued at the command shell prompt, the issuer must be logged onto a database server machine as the local superuser "root".

As it initializes, the VL Server process creates the two files that constitute the Volume Location Database (VLDB), vldb.DB0 and vldb.DBSYS1, in the /var/lib/openafs/db directory if they do not already exist. Use the commands in the vos suite to administer the database.

The VL Server maintains the record of volume locations in the Volume Location Database (VLDB). When the Cache Manager fills a file request from an application program, it first contacts the VL Server to learn which file server machine currently houses the volume that contains the file. The Cache Manager then requests the file from the File Server process running on that file server machine.

The VL Server records a trace of its activity in the /var/log/openafs/VLLog file. Use the bos getlog command to display the contents of the file. By default, it records on a minimal number of messages. For instructions on increasing the amount of logging, see VLLog(5).

By default, the VL Server runs nine lightweight processes (LWPs). To change the number, use the -p argument.

This command does not use the syntax conventions of the AFS command suites. Provide the command name and all option names in full.


Sets the detail level for the debugging trace written to the /var/log/openafs/VLLog file. Provide one of the following values, each of which produces an increasingly detailed trace: 0, 1, 5, 25, and 125.
Sets the number of server lightweight processes (LWPs or pthreads) to run. Provide an integer between 3 and 64. The default is 9.
Allows the server to send and receive jumbograms. A jumbogram is a large-size packet composed of 2 to 4 normal Rx data packets that share the same header. The VL Server does not use jumbograms by default, as some routers are not capable of properly breaking the jumbogram into smaller packets and reassembling them.
Deprecated; Jumbograms are disabled by default.
Activates the collection of Rx statistics and allocates memory for their storage. For each connection with a specific UDP port on another machine, a separate record is kept for each type of RPC (FetchFile, GetStatus, and so on) sent or received. To display or otherwise access the records, use the Rx Monitoring API.
Activates the collection of Rx statistics and allocates memory for their storage. A separate record is kept for each type of RPC (FetchFile, GetStatus, and so on) sent or received, aggregated over all connections to other machines. To display or otherwise access the records, use the Rx Monitoring API.
By default, the RXKAD security layer will disallow access by Kerberos principals with a dot in the first component of their name. This is to avoid the confusion where principals user/admin and user.admin are both mapped to the user.admin PTS entry. Sites whose Kerberos realms don't have these collisions between principal names may disable this check by starting the server with this option.
Turns on audit logging, and sets the path for the audit log. The audit log records information about RPC calls, including the name of the RPC call, the host that submitted the call, the authenticated entity (user) that issued the call, the parameters for the call, and if the call succeeded or failed.
Specifies what audit interface to use. Defaults to "file". See fileserver(8) for an explanation of each interface.
Bind the Rx socket to the primary interface only. (If not specified, the Rx socket will listen on all interfaces.)
Specifies that logging output should go to syslog instead of the normal log file. -syslog=FACILITY can be used to specify to which facility the log message should be sent. Logging message sent to syslog are tagged with the string "vlserver".
Turns off all authorization checks, and allows all connecting users to act as administrators, even unauthenticated users. The use of this option is inherently insecure, and should only be used in controlled environments for experimental or debug purposes. See NoAuth(5).
Specifies that the vlserver should limit its memory usage during certain operations, and return an error to the calling client instead of allocating more memory. This option is only useful on systems where memory is severely limited, and should not be needed on any remotely modern system.
Sets the maximum transmission unit for the RX protocol.
Turns on low-level Rx packet tracing, and logs the trace information to the specified file. The trace file can be later dumped into a human-readable form with a tool called dumptrace.

It is not recommended to turn on this option during normal operation, since the detailed tracing may cause performance issues and use up a lot of disk space.

Sets the file to use for server logging. If logfile is not specified, and no other logging options are supplied, this will be /var/log/openafs/VLLog. Note that this option is intended for debugging and testing purposes. Changing the location of the log file from the command line may result in undesirable interactions with tools such as bos.
Use Transarc style logging features. Rename the log file /var/log/openafs/VLLog to /var/log/openafs/VLLog.old when the VL Server is restarted. This option is provided for compatibility with older versions.
Set the location of the database used by this program. This option is intended primarily for testing purposes.
Set the location of the configuration directory used to configure this service. In a typical configuration this will be /etc/openafs/server - this option allows the use of alternative configuration locations for testing purposes.
Restrict RPCs that query information about volumes to a specific group of users. Only the RPCs that are not used by cache managers will be restricted, since cache manager connections to the Volume Server are always unauthenticated. You can use "admin" to restrict to AFS administrators. The "anyuser" option doesn't restrict the RPCs and leaves it open for all users including unauthenticated users, this is the default.
Prints the online help for this command. All other valid options are ignored.


The following bos create command creates a vlserver process on the machine "" that uses six lightweight processes. Type the command on a single line:

   % bos create -server -instance vlserver -type simple \
                -cmd "/usr/lib/openafs/vlserver -p 6"


The issuer must be logged in as the superuser "root" on a file server machine to issue the command at a command shell prompt. It is conventional instead to create and start the process by issuing the bos create command.


BosConfig(5), VLLog(5), vldb.DB0(5), bos_create(8), bos_getlog(8)


IBM Corporation 2000. <> All Rights Reserved.

This documentation is covered by the IBM Public License Version 1.0. It was converted from HTML to POD by software written by Chas Williams and Russ Allbery, based on work by Alf Wachsmann and Elizabeth Cassell.

2023-12-24 OpenAFS