[root tip] [How To] systemd mount unit samples

Difficulty: ★★☆☆☆

Example mount units for systemd


The examples here are a supplement to the guide on systemd mount units

:warning: Remember to remove the comments placed in the units - they are not writting for copy-paste but as examples. (comments is text beginning with a #)

Only use an automount unit if the device is not readily available at boot like removable devices and network locations.

Important rule

:warning: :information_source:

  1. For Internal devices enable and start the mount unit .
  2. For a removable device - never enable the mount unit only the automount unit.

:information_source:

  • The mount unit will create the mountpoint if it does not exist.
  • The automount unit will fail if the mount unit is active
  • The automount unit will start the mount unit when the mountpoint is accessed whether this is terminal or application access.

Unit file names


Local system unit files are stored in /etc/systemd/system.

Mount unit

  • Mount units must be named the mount point with the extension of .mount so if you use a mountpoint named /data/backup the unit file must be named data-backup.mount

Automount unit

  • Automount units use the name of the mount unit with an extension of .automount so the automount unit for the example data-backup.mount must be named data-backup.automount.

:warning:

You can create the files by using the output like this

touch $(systemd-escape -p --suffix=mount "/data/home-backup")
touch $(systemd-escape -p --suffix=automount "/data/home-backup")

Content of a mount unit


Depending on the Type, the What is different and so is the Options

What do you want to mount (disk, server, share)?
Where do you want it to mount (a path on your system)?
Which Type is your mount (filesystem, cifs, nfs)?
What Options should the mount use(rw, auto, netdev)?

Example

If you want to mount a Samba share named video provided by a local NAS named server

  • What is the name of server and the share e.g. //server/video
  • Where is the path where you can browse the data provided by the share e.g. /data/smb/video
  • Type will be cifs because that is what this type of connection is called
  • Options will instruct the system it is a net device _netdev, it should be possible to read and write rw, and connect using a specific workgroup, username and password.

Sample mount units

SMB network share


The package smbclient is enough. The credentials can be stored in location readable only by root. Replace the $VARIABLES with the values for your system

NOTE: According to the archlinux wiki the uid and gid can cause I/O errors.

Warning: Using uid and/or gid as mount options may cause I/O errors, it is recommended to set/check correct File permissions and attributes instead. - Samba - ArchWiki

More information on Samba can be found on the archlinux wiki

SMB credentials

Create a file /etc/smb.cred or in user’s home with content

user=$SMBUSER
password=$SMBPASS
workgroup=$WORKGROUP

Make the file readonly to user

sudo chmod 600 /etc/smb.cred

SMB version

If needed you add a version to the options string e.g. vers=NT1

mount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.mount

[Unit]
Description=NAS SMB video share

[Mount]
What=//$YOUR_SERVER/$YOUR_SHARE
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
Type=cifs
Options=_netdev,iocharset=utf8,rw,file_mode=0777,dir_mode=0777,credentials=/etc/smb.cred,vers=$SMBVERSION
TimeoutSec=30

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

automount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.automount

[Unit]
Description=Automount video share using SMB

[Automount]
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
TimeoutIdleSec=10

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

Disk PARTITION


[Type] and [Options] are optional for disk devices.
To reduce unnecessary writings to SSD devices the noatime option is recommended.

mount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.mount

[Unit]
Description=Mount build partition

[Mount]
What=/dev/disk/by-uuid/$UUID
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
Type=ext4
Options=rw,noatime

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

USB device partition


[Type] and [Options] are optional for disk devices.
To reduce unnecessary writings to SSD devices the noatime option is recommended.

mount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.mount

[Unit]
Description=Mount USB backup device partition

[Mount]
What=/dev/disk/by-uuid/$UUID
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
Type=ext4
Options=rw,noatime

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

USB partition automount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.autommount

[Unit]
Description=Automount USB backup partition

[Automount]
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
TimeoutIdleSec=10

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

NFS network share


mount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.mount

[Unit]
Description=Mount NAS Video share using NFS

[Mount]
What=$YOUR_SERVER:/$YOUR_SHARE
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
Type=nfs
Options=_netdev,auto

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

automount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.automount

[Unit]
Description=Automount video share usuing NFS

[Automount]
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
TimeoutIdleSec=10

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

MOUNT unit for FTP server


Using curlftpfs. It is also possible to store the username and password in a safe location readable only by root.

You can put the user and password in a .netrc file in the home directory of the user that executes CurlFtpFS. It can have 600 permission. It’s still clear text but at least is not accessible by all.
The format is:

machine ftp.host.com
login myuser
password mypass

See curlftpfs on archlinux wiki. Replace the $VARIABLES with the actual values for your use case.

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.mount

[Unit]
Description=Mount FTP server (ftp.server.tld) using curlftpfs
Wants=network-online.service

[Mount]
What=curlftpfs#ftp.server.tld
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
Type=fuse
Options=rw,nosuid,uid=$UID,gid=$GID,allow_other,user=$FTPUSER:$FTPPASS

[Install]
WantedBy=remote-fs.target
WantedBy=multi-user.target

automount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.automount

[Unit]
Description=Automount ftp server ftp.server.tld

[Automount]
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
TimeoutIdleSec=300

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

WEBDAV


See the Arch wiki on webdav. Install davfs2 from the repo

Edit the file /etc/davfs2/secrets and append your webdav service and credentials

http(s)://address:<port>/path    davusername    "davpassword"

Or create a user file at ~/.davfs2/secrets for user specific mounts

mount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.mount

[Unit]
Description=Mount WebDAV Service on server https://host:port/path
Wants=network-online.service

[Mount]
What=http(s)://address:<port>/path
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
Options=rw,_netdev
Type=davfs
TimeoutSec=15

[Install]
WantedBy=remote-fs.target
WantedBy=multi-user.target

automount unit

Name the file according to $YOUR_MOUNT_PATH.automount

[Unit]
Description=Mount WebDAV Service

[Automount]
Where=$YOUR_MOUNT_PATH
TimeoutIdleSec=300

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target
13 Likes
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Thank you for your great tutorial, it helped me a lot to learn about systemd. Never used it before, always made changes to fstab.

Here

the path has to be:
/etc/systemd/system/data-webdav-service.automount

I used your guide to setup a webdav-mount and webdav-automount unit (nextcloud). Everything worked fine, except at shutdown I got:

[Failed] Unmounting /run/user/1000

and at reboot some

[Skip] Ordering cycle found, skipping ∆∆xtcluod (/media/cloud)

After reboot the automount unit was disabled.

Checked with:
sudo systemd-analyze verify media-cloud.automount and sudo systemd-analyze verify media-cloud.mount
and got ordering cycle messages.

So I commented out the lines with network-online.target in both units, reloaded daemon and enable automount. After that, everything went fine, no errors, automount enabled after reboot.

Do I need the After=network-online.target & Wants=network-online.target lines and if so, how to avoid the ordering cycle?

To enhance the info, here is an example of a bind-mount which can become very useful:

boot.mount
[Unit]
Conflicts=umount.target

[Mount]
Where=/boot
What=/efi/Manjaro
Type=none
Options=bind

[Install]
WantedBy=local-fs.target

This assumes you have your ESP mounted on /efi and all your files that normally are under /boot have been installed under /efi/Manjaro :wink:

Would you be able to provide an example of mounting a LUKS encrypted drive using systemd? I can mount the drive once I’ve run cryptsetup luksOpen /dev/sda1 cryptdata, but I’m not sure how to specify this within a systemd mount unit.

@Feakster
You don’t mount encrypted volumes, but as the command says you “Open” them.
Therefore you need to specify it in /etc/crypttab.initramfs.
That extension will place it in the ramdisk only, you can use the plain (without extension initramfs) if you only want it in your regular system.

Afterwards you can mount the volume as usual.
Eg. in your example that would become /dev/mapper/cryptdata as drive/partition name.

Either the above or create a service unit that opens the encrypted volume :wink:

You may also read systemd-cryptsetup(8) as a related documentation.

1 Like

This isn’t a good example for a SMB mount. There is no : in a samba mount URL. Also it should start with //

For example

[Mount]
What=//IP-address/video

Thank you for spotting that - I will check it - and done :ballot_box_with_check:

A post was split to a new topic: Samba low transfer rates using systemd mount unit

The following fact is not completely clear from the tutorial and cost me a bit of research until I found out:
For an automount, both .mount and .automount files are needed. Maybe you can add this to the description.
Other than that: Great article, I managed to (auto)mount my network shares in a good manner for the first time - thanks a lot!

I may have missed the above sentence

1 Like

Well, yeah, I was wondering if a “mount unit” could also be a logical internal data structure (so I started merging the automount and mount examples into one single automount file).
But I guess you are right, this might have been my own stupidity…