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A Brief History of pNFS

Barbara Murphy



Any of us who have been around the storage industry for a long time knows that standards adoption happens at what sometimes feels like a snail’s pace.  It takes the vision and dedication of people like Garth Gibson, Panasas founder and CTO, to bring momentous change to the industry by pushing the boundaries of technology.

Panasas was instrumental in driving the initial proposal for pNFS and Garth Gibson has been a key contributor to the creation of the open standard for high performance computing.   Take a listen to Garth Gibson talking at SC10 on the genesis of pNFS and the developments that have occurred since his first proposal in 2003.

Garth’s prediction that broad pNFS support would make it into Linux Kernel 2.6.40 didn’t take into account that Linus Torvalds might change the Kernel numbering scheme.  Since the video was shot the pNFS standard was adopted into the Linux 3.0 kernel in June 2011.