Internet, Networking, & Security Home Networking What Is a Network File System (NFS)? A technology for sharing resources between devices By Bradley Mitchell Writer An MIT graduate who brings years of technical experience to articles on SEO, computers, and wireless networking. our editorial process LinkedIn Bradley Mitchell Updated December 04, 2019 Getty Images/Dimitri Otis Home Networking The Wireless Connection Routers & Firewalls Network Hubs ISP Broadband Ethernet Installing & Upgrading Wi-Fi & Wireless Tweet Share Email A network file system (NFS) is a technology for sharing resources between devices on a local area network (LAN). NFS allows data to be stored on central servers and easily accessed from client devices in a client/server network configuration via a process called mounting. The History of NFS NFS became popular starting in the 1980s on Sun workstations and other Unix computers. Examples of network file systems include Sun NFS and Session Message Block (SMB) (sometimes called Samba) often used when sharing files with Linux servers. Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices (that sometimes are Linux-based) also typically implement NFS technology.