Current (release notes): 0.90
Platforms used in production systems
Mac OS X
See below for version details.
Arla documentation
Arla FAQ
AFS wiki
Mailing lists archives

[Project goals] [Supported platforms] [Project status] [Distribution] [Documentation] [Mailing lists] [CVS] [Links]

Project goals

Arla is a free AFS implementation.
The main goal is to make a fully functional client with all capabilities of AFS as formerly sold by Transarc and today available as OpenAFS. Other stuff, such as servers and management tools are being developed, but currently not considered stable.

Supported platforms

The currently supported platforms are:

  • FreeBSD: Arla 0.43 on 5.1 - 5.5
  • NetBSD: Arla 0.43 on 2.x, and 3.0
  • Linux: Arla 0.43 on 2.4.x to 2.6.15, Arla 0.90 on 2.6.16 and beyond
  • Mac OS X: Arla 0.90 on 10.4
The support for those should be pretty up-to-date as the developers work on them.
Platforms on which arla should work but which are untested for some reason include:
  • OpenBSD for details, see their documentation
Please submit build and test reports!
Platforms with some of the work made, but which are not fully supported:
  • Windows 2000 and newer
  • Solaris
  • AIX 4
  • IRIX 6
  • HPUX
  • SunOS 4.1.x
  • Other versions of the supported platforms.

Project status

  • Working stable client (currently caching files from the start up to where you read)
  • Authentication (with Heimdal)
  • Used in production systems with FreeBSD, NetBSD and Linux.
  • Some administration programs (fs, vos, pts and bos)
  • An experimental AFS server (milko)
  • Graphical program amon for monitoring the state of the cache.
  • A graphical interface for managing ACLs

If you find this useful and want to speed things up, have you considered contributing your time and efforts to this project? But you don't quite know how to start?

  • Subscribe to arla-drinkers list
  • Have a look at README and TODO files in the distribution
  • The utilities (vos, pts and others) have subcommands which are not implemented yet.
  • You are a regular user of Arla on platforms other than NetBSD or Linux on i386. For example Linux/alpha, NetBSD/vax, OpenDarwin or any other platform we might have not thought about. We would like to hear from you and to be able to tell you when there is a new release "around the corner".


A link to the current release can be found in the sidebar. Or look around in the arla directory on our ftp server. If you have AFS, you can of course go directly to the source in AFS.

Sometimes we make snapshots of the sources and put it on our ftp-server at ftp://ftp.stacken.kth.se/pub/arla/snap/. Those sources are not guaranteed to work.

Since AFS uses the Kerberos system for authentication, you really want to build Arla with Kerberos support. You should be able to build Arla without Kerberos, just losing some functionality in the process, but only very few people do that. We are building and using Arla with Heimdal , and we do recommend it. Building with other Kerberos distributions (like MIT Kerberos or CNS) might also be possible, but you will at least need the krbafs library. The easiest way to get Arla to work with other Kerberos implementations is to build and link statically with heimdal and then use your existing Kerberos binaries to provide the authentication token.

A pkg is available for NetBSD (net/arla).

The RPMs are old, but here they are:
SuSE 9.1
Red Hat

We are told that you can find Debian packages.

Binary Mac OS X Tiger packages are available: Arla 0.90 for Mac OS X 10.4


There's not much documentation about Arla at the moment. Some documentation is included in the distribution. Here are some pointers to relevant AFS documentation:

  • Arla documentation from the distribution in HTML and PDF format.
  • A brief Arla FAQ.
  • AFS's programmers manual
  • AFS Faq
  • A Usenix Freenix track paper, Usenix technical conference 1998 that Johan Danielsson and Assar Westerlund presented. There was also some slides.
  • A conference called Made2000 - Management and Administration of Distributed Environments, in Gothenburg, Sweden 2000 we presented a paper about porting Arla to Windows. There was also some slides.

CVS tree

The CVS tree for Arla is located in AFS and is world-readable. The CVSROOT is /afs/stacken.kth.se/src/SourceRepository. You need a version of CVS that doesn't try to create lock files. If you don't have one, a patch relative to cvs-1.10 is available here. With that you can checkout the arla code with a command such as:
cvs -R -d /afs/stacken.kth.se/src/SourceRepository checkout arla
Another way to access the cvs-tree is from the computer anoncvs.stacken.kth.se. Its recommended that set the enviroment-variable CVS_RSH to ssh.
env CVS_RSH=ssh \
cvs -d anoncvs@anoncvs.stacken.kth.se:/stacken-cvs checkout arla
This repository is rsync:ed with the real one every hour, fifteen minutes over. For building from the CVS tree, please see the file HACKING.

You can also access the cvs-tree though cvsweb

Mailing lists

There are three mailing lists about arla.

  • arla-announce@stacken.kth.se (a low-volume announcements list)
  • arla-drinkers@stacken.kth.se (a high-volume discussion list)
  • arla-commit@stacken.kth.se (a higher-volume commit list)

To subscribe to either of them send mail to LIST-request@stacken.kth.se (replacing LIST with the appropriate name) with subscribe in the body.

Please note that the mailinglists have a policy of subscriber only posting. So if you want to mail a message to the list, subscribe to it first, otherwise it wont be posted on the list.

There are archives of them:

Links, goodies, and other stuff

  • Contributions
  • Arla is totally (?) unrelated to Arla.
  • ObScreenshot: Amon
  • ObScreenshot2: afsaclmgr
  • Debugging lwp: LWP support for gdb
  • A friend of ours came up with this alternative expansion of arla.

    In the README there is a section what `arla' means:

    - Arla in Swedish means `early'.  Most of the code has been written
    early in the morning.
    - Arla is also the name of the largest producer of dairy products in
    Sweden.  They produce, among others, a milk product called `fil'
    (filmjölk = sour milk) which also happens to be the swedish word for
  • Coda is a forked of version of AFS that support disconnected and weakly connected mode better then AFS.
  • xFS is a Serverless Network File Service.
  • XFS is a high-performance journaling file system from SGI.
  • OpenAFS is the Transarc source code released as it looked like around AFS3.6 under IBM Public License IPL.
  • AFS-Monitor This module is a Perl interface to AFS monitoring and debugging tools. Nagios monitoring plugins found there.
  • fsr Fsr is a wrapper around the standard AFS fs utility that makes it recursive. Ws.c may solve the same problem.
  • Dumpscan, the volume dump extraction utility.
  • Ka to krb5 migration toolkit.
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