Carrying Your Files Around

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Carrying Your Files Around

Many physical devices that can store and retrieve files, from punched tape to laser discs. They can be connected to the computer you're using in two basic ways:

Local filesystems handle files that are stored directly on the computer you are using. These files may be stored on a local hard disk, also called a hard drive. On Athena, local drives are used to hold programs and data needed to recover from reboots, temporary user data, and certain system programs that are accessed very frequently.

Distributed filesystems do not store files directly on the local computer, but rather in a central storage location that is accessible to a network of computers. This storage space, called a fileserver, is a computer with an extra large hard drive. On Athena, all personal files are stored on fileservers and are accessible from any Athena workstation. However, since all the files have to pass through the network to get to your workstation, access may be slower than for local files.