"The flexibility and extensibility of support for Linux
file systems is a direct result of an abstracted set of interfaces.
At the core of that set of interfaces is the virtual file system
"The VFS provides a set of standard interfaces for upper-layer
applications to perform file I/O over a diverse set of file
systems. And it does it in a way that supports multiple concurrent
file systems over one or more underlying devices. Additionally,
these file systems need not be static but may come and go with the
transient nature of the storage devices.
"For example, a typical Linux desktop supports an ext3 file
system on the available hard disk, as well as the ISO 9660 file
system on an available CD-ROM (otherwise called the CD-ROM file
system, or CDFS). As CD-ROMs are inserted and removed, the Linux
kernel must adapt to these new file systems with different contents
and structure. A remote file system can be accessed through the
Network File System (NFS). At the same time, Linux can mount the NT
File System (NTFS) partition of a Windows®/Linux dual-boot
system from the local hard disk and read and write from it."
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