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    SubjectThinking outside the box on file systems
    I want to throw out some concepts about a new way of
    thinking about file systems. But the first thing you
    have to do is to forget what you know about file
    systems now. This is a discussion about a new view of
    looking a file storage that is radically different and
    it's more easily undersood if you forget a lot of what
    you know. The idea is to create what seems natural to
    the user rather than what seems natural to the

    For example, if a user has not read or write access to
    a file then why should they be able to delete the file
    - or even list the file in the directory? In order to
    grasp this idea the idea of directory permission as
    you now know them needs to go away.

    Imagine that the file system is a database that
    contains file data, name data, and permission data.
    Loose the idea that files have an owner and a group or
    the attributes that we are familiar with. Think
    instead that users, groups, managers, application,
    and such are objects and there is a complex rights
    system that gives access to names that point to file

    For example. If you list a directory you only see the
    files that you have some rights to and files where you
    have no rights are invisible to you. If a file is read
    only to you then you can't delete it either. Having
    write access to a directory really means that you have
    file create rights. You can also delete files that you
    have write access to. You would also allocate
    permissions to manage file rights like being able to
    set the rights of inferior users.

    The ACLs that were added to Linux were a step in the
    right direction but very incomplete. What should be is
    a complex permission system that would allow fine
    grained permissions and inherentance masks to control
    what permission are granted when someone moves new
    files into a directory. Instead of just root and users
    there would be mid level roles where users and objects
    had management authority over parts of the system and
    the roles can be defined in a very flexible way. For
    example, rights might change during "business hours".

    I want to throw these concepts out there to inspire a
    new way of thinging and let Linux evolve into a more
    natural kind of file system rather than staying ture
    to it's ancient roots. Of course there would be an
    emulation layer to keep existing apps happy but I
    think that Linux will never be truly what it could be
    unless it breaks away from the limitations of the

    Anyhow, I'm going to stop at this just to let these
    ideas settle in. In my mind there's a lot more detail
    but let's see where this goes.

    Marc Perkel

    Marc Perkel
    Junk Email Filter dot com

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      Last update: 2007-08-15 00:49    [W:0.027 / U:6.580 seconds]
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