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Using NFS shares on a Raspberry Pi

·524 words·3 mins

I use this mainly on my amateur radio hotspot when I work on my sleek dashboard.

This setup lets me edit the php-files on my computer while I use the already installed webserver as a development server to view the actual changes/progress. The advantage of that is: I don’t have to feed pseudo-random data into the tables, the data gets pulled live from the logs – like it would be on the final system.

Installation and configuration #

$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install nfs-kernel-server
$ sudo vim /etc/exports

We have to export our directories in the file /etc/exports on our Raspberry Pi.

# file: "/etc/exports"

So we allow read- and write-access to the directories above.

For the record: my user on my laptop ( has the same UID (1000) as my user on the Raspberry Pi (

Also edit /etc/hosts.allow to grant access for your network or host.

# file: "/etc/hosts.allow"

After we changed the contents of /etc/exports we have to run the exportfs command and restart the nfs-server.

$ sudo exportfs -ra
$ sudo systemctl restart nfs-server.service

Accessing the directories #

I usually look at the logs on my Raspberry Pi with journalctl -fe and let this running.

Now on my laptop in my home directory. I create a temporary directory with mkdir tmp and try to mount the nfs share into that. On most linux systems only root is allowed to use mount without an entry in /etc/fstab.

So we run

$ sudo mount tmp/

and if it does not print anything, all is good. On the Raspberry Pi you should see a new line looking like:

raspi4 rpc.mountd[30223]: authenticated mount request from for /opt/MMDVMDash/html (/opt/MMDVMDash/html)
To eliminate the confusion: I’ve mounted /var/www/html but the log shows /opt/MMDVMDash/html. This is because /var/www/html is currently a symbolic link to /opt/MMDVMDash/html. But if I remove the symlink and replace it with real files the export will still work.

And that’s it. Unmount with sudo umount tmp/ and we should create an entry in our /etc/fstab file to let the system mount this share when starting.

When unmounting, you should see another line on your Raspberry Pi.

raspi4 rpc.mountd[30223]: authenticated unmount request from for /opt/MMDVMDash/html (/opt/MMDVMDash/html)

Creating entries in our /etc/fstab file #

First, let us create a directory on our laptop.

$ mkdir -p ~/raspi4/html
# file: "/etc/fstab"  /home/dominic/raspi4/html   nfs       noauto,users,nodev,async,soft,_netdev,x-systemd.automount,x-systemd.device-timeout=1,x-systemd-idle-timeout=1min,x-systemd.mount-timeout=10,timeo=10,retry=3   0       0

After changing that file, make sure to reload Systemd with sudo systemctl daemon-reload.

Mount them from your home directory with mount raspi4/html. The same line should appear on your Raspberry Pi (if you still have journalctl -fe running!).

You may use less confusing settings in your fstab file, but I’m going with those from above on my Manjaro box, as I also use other NFS shares on my NAS and it turned out those work best for my scenario for now.

You could try by only using noauto,users,nodev,async as a starting point. If it fails, try adding only _netdev first – I can’t exactly remember why, but I keep thinking I researched this a while back and sticked with it.