AUTOMOUNT(8)                                                      AUTOMOUNT(8)


       automount - configure mount points for autofs


       automount [options] mount-point map-type[,format] map [map-options]


       The  automount  program  is used to configure a mount point for autofs,
       the inlined Linux automounter.  automount works by taking a base mount-
       point  and  map  file, and using these (combined with other options) to
       automatically mount filesystems within the base mount-point  when  they
       are  accessed in any way.  The filesystems are then autounmounted after
       a period of inactivity.


       -p, --pid-file
              Write the pid of the daemon to the specified file.

       -t, --timeout
              Set the minimum  timeout,  in  seconds,  until  directories  are
              unmounted.   The  default  is 5 minutes.  Setting the timeout to
              zero disables unmounts completely.

       -v, --verbose
              Enables printing of general status and progress messages.

       -d, --debug
              Enables printing of general status and progress messages as well
              as debuging messages.

       -g, --ghost
              Request  that  directories  in  the  automount  be shown but not
              mounted until accesssed. The wildcard map is not ghosted.

       -V, --version
              Display the version number, then exit.


       automount takes at least three arguments.  Mandatory arguments  include
       mount-point,  map-type, and map.  Both mandatory and optional arguments
       are described below.

              Base location for autofs-mounted  filesystems  to  be  attached.
              This is a directory name that will be created (as with mkdir -p)
              and later when automount terminates will  be  removed  (as  with
              rmdir -p).

              Type  of map used for this invocation of automount.  The follow-
              ing are valid map types:

              file   The map is a regular text file.

                     The map is an executable program, which is passed  a  key
                     on  the  command  line  and returns an entry on stdout if

              yp     The map is a NIS (YP) database.

                     The map is a NIS+ database.

              hesiod The map is a hesiod database  whose  filsys  entries  are
                     used for maps.

              ldap   map  names  are  of the form [//servername/]basedn, where
                     the optional servername is the name of the LDAP server to
                     query, and basedn is the DN to do a subtree search under.
                     Two LDAP schema are supported. The automountMap  and  the
                     nisMap (RFC 2307) object classes.

              Entries  in the automountMap schema are automount objects in the
              specified subtree, where the cn attribute is the key (the  wild-
              card  key  is  "/"), and the automountInformation attribute con-
              tains the information used by the automounter.  Documentation on
              the   schema   used  by  this  module  is  available  online  at

              RFC 2307 schema entries are nisObject objects  and  use  the  cn
              attribute  as  the  key and the nisMapEntry contains information
              used by the automounter.

       format Format of the map data; currently the  only  formats  recognized
              are  sun,  which  is a subset of the Sun automounter map format,
              and hesiod, for hesiod filesys entries.  If the format  is  left
              unspecified, it defaults to sun for all map types except hesiod.

       map    Location of mapfile to use.  This is an absolute  UNIX  pathname
              in the case for maps of types file or program, and the name of a
              database in the case for maps of type yp, nisplus, or hesiod.

              Any remaining command line arguments without leading dashes  (-)
              are  taken  as  options  (-o)  to mount.  Arguments with leading
              dashes are considered options for the maps.

              The sun format supports the following options:

                     Replace variable with value in map substitutions.

                     Treat errors when mounting file systems as fatal. This is
                     important  when  multiple  file systems should be mounted
                     (‘multimounts’). If this option is given, no file  system
                     is  mounted  at  all if at least one file system can’t be


       If the automount daemon catches signal USR1, it will unmount  all  cur-
       rently  unused  autofs-mounted filesystems and continue running (forced
       expire).  If it catches signals TERM or USR2 it will unmount all unused
       autofs-mounted  filesystems and exit if all filesystems were unmounted.
       Busy filesystems will not be unmounted.  The daemon also responds to  a
       HUP  signal  which  triggers  an  update  of maps for which ghosting is
       implemented (currently FILE and NIS maps).

       If the autofs directory itself is busy when  the  daemon  is  signalled
       with  an  exit  signal then the daemon will exit without unmounting the
       autofs filesystem.  The filesystem is left in  a  catatonic  (non-func-
       tional) state, and can be unmounted when it becomes unused.


       autofs(5), mount(8).


       A whole slew of missing desirable features (see TODO file).

       The documentation leaves a lot to be desired.

       Please  report  other  bugs  along with a detailed description to <aut->. For instructions on how to join the list and for
       archives visit


       H. Peter Anvin <>

                                  14 Jan 2000                     AUTOMOUNT(8)

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