In this article, I will explain how you can install and configure an NFS Server on a Windows 2019 Server. I will also show you the steps to create an NFS shared folder and mount the shared folder on Linux clients.

What is the Network File System (NFS)?

Network File System (NFS) provides a file-sharing solution that lets you transfer files between computers running Windows Server and other non-Windows operating systems such as Linux or UNIX using the NFS protocol.

NFS in Windows Server includes Server for NFS and Client for NFS. A computer running Windows Server can use Server for NFS to act as an NFS file server for other non-Windows client computers.

Client for NFS allows a Windows-based computer running Windows Server to access files stored on a non-Windows NFS server.

Understanding Test lab:

For this, we will use the virtual test lab created in VirtualBox.

  • WS2K19-DC01: Domain Controller and DNS
  • UBUNTU1804: Ubuntu OS, NFS client.

Install Server for NFS role service in Windows Server 2019:

To install the Server for NFS role service in Windows Server 2019, follow the below steps:

1. Open Server Manager. Click on Tools and select Add Role and Features.

1. Start Add Roles and feature installation wizard

2. On the Before you begin page, click Next.

2. Click Next on before you begin screen

3. Select Role-based or feature-based installation and click Next.

3. select role-based or feature-based installation

4. Select a server from the server pool on which you want to install the Network File System for Server role service, click Next.

4. Select local server for server for NFS role service installation

5. On select server roles page, expand File and Storage Services, expand File and iSCSI Services. Select Server for NFS checkbox.

5. Select Server for NFS role service

6. A new window will pop up, click on Add Features to include required features and management tools needed by the NFS server.

6. Click on Add Features to add required feature for NFS server

7. Make sure that the Server for NFS role service is selected. Click Next.

7. Make sure NFS role is selected

8. On select features, click Next.

8. Click Next on select feature page

9. Click Install and complete the installation process.

9. Click on Install to start NFS role Installation Process

10. Click Close to finish the installation.

10. Click on close once installation completes

How to Create an NFS Shared Folder on Server 2019:

After installing the Server for NFS on Windows Server 2019, the next step is to create an NFS shared folder by using the File and Storage Services console.

11. On the Server Manager Console, click on File and Storage Services.

11. Click on File and Storage Service

12. Click on Shares. Right-click in the empty area and select New Share.

12. Select New Share

13. On Select the profile for this share, select NFS Share – Quick profile. Click Next.

13. Select NFS Share Quick Profile

14. To configure a specific folder as NFS shared folder, select the checkbox Type a custom path and type the path for the specific folder you’d like to set as a shared folder. Click Next.

14. Browse the local folder path to share as NFS share

15. Verify share name, local path and remote path for NFS shared folder. Click Next.

15. Verify NFS share Name and path

16. Specify the Authentication methods as per your requirement.

16. Select NFS authentication method

17. To set up the NFS share permissions, click Add button.

17. Click on Add to specify permission

18. Specify the Hosts you’d like and assign the access permissions from the drop-down menu.

  • Host: (IP address of Ubuntu VM)
  • Share Permissions: Read/Write

19. Click on Add.

18. Specify the Host and Permission Information

20. Using the same steps, you can add permission for other Hosts as well. Click Next.

19. Click Next after specifying NFS permission

21. Specify NTFS permission. As we are just testing NFS sharing, we are going with default permission. Click Next.

20. Setup NTFS permission as needed

22. Review the selections, click on the Create button.

21. Click on Create to create a new NFS share folder

23. Click on the close button after verifying the successful creation of the NFS shared folder.

22. Click on Close once you finished

24. Verify the NFS shared folder under the shares list. Access the local path of the NFS shared folder. Create one text file and put some text under it.

23. Create one sample text file under the folder

Mount the NFS shared Folder on Linux Client (Ubuntu Machine):

25. On the Ubuntu machine, verify the local IP address and network connectivity with the NFS server.

24. Check local IP address and connectivity with NFS server

26. To mount an NFS shared folder on a Linux machine, open terminal. Type command: mkdir /data

This command will create one directory name data under the root directory.

25. Create one new directory

27. Type command:

Syntax: mount -t nfs <NFS-Server-IP>/<NFS-Shared-Folder-Name> /<Mount-Point>

For example, to mount an NFS shared folder named share1 of the NFS server that is configured with IP address, the folder should be mapped on the /data mount point.

In our case command will look like:

mount –t nfs /data

26. Mount the NFS shared Folder on Ubuntu Machine

28. Verify the content of the text file which we have created earlier on the NFS server.

27. Verify the sample text file.

In this blog post, we have learned the steps on how to install and configure NFS in Windows Server 2019.

I hope, you enjoyed it. Thank you for reading.

Video Guide: Installing and Configuring NFS Server role in Windows Server 2019