We are looking into options to setup a file server for our MAC OS X clients. We may eventually want to access the server from Linux and Windows clients.

We plan on using a Linux file server.

I was looking at my options, and it looks like AFS is the best file sharing protocol (compared to NFS, SMB, and a few others). In fact, from what I have seen, AFS looks spectacular.

Before we make our decision, I have a few questions:

1. Why isn't AFS more well known? I have looked through various forums and various linux sites, and AFS seems to be rarely used.

2. What are some problems/limitations/cons of AFS?

3. Can my AFS servers use Active Directory for user authentication?

4. Can I have multiple authentication servers? I read that the files get replicated to other file servers, but what about the authentication server?

5. Is there a way for file to inherit parent folder's permission like in Windows? So if a user creates a new file, it will inherit the permissions of the parent so other users can access/modify the file (assuming they have access to the folder)?

6. Does the replication replicate every file to every file server? Or does it only replicate specific files to specific servers? If I have 3 file servers, will there therefore be 3 copies of each file or 2? How do I set that?

7. How does the replication do its thing? Does it send the entire file to the other server as soon as the file is modified? Or does it send only the changes of the file? Does it only send changes on a scheduled basis?

8. How does the replication prevent 2 users from changing one file at the same time?

9. Can the windows client use single-sign-on? Or will the users be prompted for their username and password?

Forgive me if any of these questions are included in the AFS documentation. I went through the documentation rather quickly and was quite overwhelved.

Can anyone refer me to some good tutorials and other EASY introduction documentation on it?