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AlBlue’s Blog

Macs, Modularity and More

ZFS 119 on Mac OS X

Zfs Mac 2008

Although ZFS 119 has probably been around for a while, I haven't had much chance to play with it, and as such, not blogged about it either. As last time, I've put together a ZFS-119.pkg which can be used by people wishing to install a read-write ZFS ahead of Snow Leopard being introduced. This has a couple of important fixes since the previous (102a) version; notably mmap'd files (those used by large in-out systems, in particular video encoders) now work. There are still known problems with rsync 2.6 (which is the default for Mac OS X) — this needs to be updated to rsync 3.0.

The progress of ZFS is pretty good - whilst it doesn't have zfs share or support booting, it's a solid file system that will be my next disk's (when my laptop arrives) and I think it is only going to go better. I hope, but don't expect, that Snow Leopard will be able to boot off a ZFS disk; the work that's going on with integrating ZFS more with the IOKit is a necessary (but not sufficient) part of that process. Realistically, with Snow Leopard being announced/released around the time of WWDC it's time for Gold Master status, and given that we can't boot from ZFS yet, I suspect it's probably more wishful thinking than anything else.

Note that pools created with ZFS-119 default to version 6; you can run 'zfs upgrade' to bring it to the current on-disk format (version 8), but you'll then lose the ability to mount it read-only from your Leopard install disks.

There's more information about this version of ZFS at the download page which is where these pre-compiled binaries were downloaded from.

There's a zfs-discuss mailing list which you can join if you're interested, as well as a FAQ with more info than I can post here.