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Virtual file system

(also VFS)

Virtual file system definition

A virtual file system is an abstraction layer in an operating structure that provides a uniform interface to access diverse types of file storage frameworks. It enables the operating structure to access local and network storage environments uniformly, regardless of their underlying architecture or format.

See also: virtual file allocation table, virtual drive

Examples of virtual file system

  • Linux VFS. The Linux Virtual File System is a pivotal part of the Linux kernel, allowing it to support a wide range of file system types. This VFS enables seamless interaction with diverse file systems like ext3, ext4, and NFS.
  • Windows NTFS. Windows New Technology File System (NTFS) incorporates a virtual file system layer and enables Windows operating systems to manage files and directories effectively.
  • Plan 9's VFS. Plan 9 is an operating system developed by Bell Labs. It features a unique virtual file system that emphasizes simplicity and network transparency. Its VFS allows to integrate various resources, including network services and devices.