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2.6. Overview of NIS

The Network Information System (NIS) refers to the service formerly known as Sun Yellow Pages (YP). It is used to make configuration information consistent on all machines in a network. It does this by designating a single host as the master of all the system administration files and databases and distributing this information to all other hosts on the network. The information is compiled into databases called maps. NIS is built on the RPC protocol. There are currently two NIS servers freely available for Linux, yps and ypserv.

2.6.4. Map Manipulation Utilities

The following utilities are used to administer NIS maps:


Make dbm files. Modify only ypservers map and any nondefault maps.


Build and install NIS databases. Manipulate maps when NIS is being initialized. Should not be used when NIS is already running.


Transfer updated maps from the master server.

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