KWLUG Meeting: Monday, Sept 9 2013, 7pm

ZFS for Linux, btrfs

Meeting Date

For some reason, those of us in the Free Software world love to become partisan about software alternatives. GNOME vs KDE, vi vs emacs, BSD vs Linux, Drupal vs Wordpress... the list goes on and on. We pick our sides and fight off challengers, even though we are all
working towards the same ends and should really be allies. Can't we all just get along? If we're going to be partisan, why not be partisan over rational things, such as sports teams?

Another pair of contenders has entered the fray, vying for the title of "most awesome next generation fileysystem". The venerable ext2/ext3/ext4 series of filesystems on Linux have fended off many (sometimes technologically-superior) challengers, and remains the default filesystem on many Linux distributions to this day. But filesystems have progressed a lot since ext2 was developed, and its days as the system default are likely numbered.

In the one corner is ZFS, the file system originally developed for Solaris by Sun Microsystems (back when there was a Sun Microsystems). ZFS is more prominent in the BSD world, but it has been ported to Linux as an unofficial kernel module, and some people use it in the wild. Lori Paniak is one of those people, and he will share some of the ZFS story with us, focussing on the interesting tale of how the porting was implemented.

In the other corner is btrfs (pronounced "Butter-FS"), a next generation filesystem native to the Linux kernel. Although btrfs is still under development it is already supported on several distros, including some enterprise ones. First-time KWLUG presenter Gary Cameron will discuss what btrfs has to offer. These presentations will begin at 7pm.

In other news, Software Freedom Day is a go for this year! We will hold our celebrations a week later than everybody else -- on Saturday, September 28, from 10am-4pm, at Kwartzlab (33 Kent St, at the corner of Kent and Charles). You are all invited, and people you know who might not be as familiar with the Free Software movement and why it matters are doubly invited.

Two themes have emerged from this year's SFD organizing. The first is multimedia: a number of presentations will deal with creating
(Blender) and organizing (XBMC, MediaGoblin) multimedia files. The second theme is GNU: this year marks the 30th anniversary of the operating system userland that most of us use every day. It is easy to ignore the GNU in GNU/Linux, so during this Software Freedom Day celebrations we will give GNU its due.

For more information about Software Freedom Day please visit . To help out, contact

Live dents from the meeting, by Bob Jonkman

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Lori Paniak will tell us about the ZFS file system. In particular he will discuss its implementation on Linux. He writes: "It is a nice story involving government sponsored open-source projects, nuclear weapons, software licensing issues and supercomputers."

Gary Cameron will tell us about btrfs, a next-generation filesystem being developed in the Linux kernel. It supports many features, including built-in redundancy, quick snapshots, and file compression.
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The host for this meeting was acant.