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Is there anything that's a good idea? Or is this just "everything has bugs and issues"?

Seems like the latter. I'd guess peterwwillis has had some bad experiences with NFS. I've had some bad experience with some of the same so-called alternatives. Every time I see someone put a text blob into a database that needs to be in a file at point of use, I want to slap them. Ditto for everyone who tries to implement a hierarchical namespace on top of a flat blob store. Ditto for everyone who distributes a thousand copies of a rarely-changing file via scp or chef, then complains about update speed or inconsistency. NFS is not generally a good idea in high-volume high-node-count traffic paths, but it can be a less-bad solution in many other situations including many that are still part of production.

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