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Installing the StashCache Cache

This document describes how to install a StashCache cache service. This service allows a site or regional network to cache data frequently used on the OSG, reducing data transfer over the wide-area network and decreasing access latency.


The cache service must be registered with the OSG if it is to be used by clients. You may start registration procedure prior to finishing the installation by using this link along with the basic information like:

  • Resource name and hostname.
  • Administrative and security contact.

Installation prerequisites for the Cache

Before starting the installation process, consider the following mandatory points:

  • Operating system: Only RHEL 7 and compatible operating systems are supported.
  • User IDs: If they do not exist already, the installation will create the Linux user IDs condor and xrootd
  • Host certificate: The StashCache server uses a host certificate to advertise to a central collector. The host certificate documentation provides more information on setting up host certificates.
  • Network ports: The cache service requires inbound ports, one for the xrootd protocol, one for HTTP and, if authenticated StashCache is used, one for HTTPS. The defaults are:
    • TCP port 1094 for xrootd.
    • TCP port 8000 for HTTP.
    • TCP port 8443 for HTTPS (optional).
  • Hardware requirements: We recommend that a StashCache server has at least 10Gbps connectivity, 1TB of disk space for the cache directory, and 8GB of RAM.

If installing the (optional) authenticated StashCache, you also need to do the following:

  • Service certificate: copy the host certificate to /etc/grid-security/xrd/xrd{cert,key}.pem
    • Set the owner of the directory and contents /etc/grid-security/xrd/ to xrootd:xrootd:
      [email protected] # chown -R xrootd:xrootd /etc/grid-security/xrd/

As with all OSG software installations, there are some one-time steps to prepare in advance:

Installing the Cache

The StashCache daemon consists of an XRootD server and an HTCondor-based service for collecting and reporting statistics about the cache. To simplify installation, OSG provides convenience RPMs that install all required software with a single command:

[email protected] # yum install --enablerepo=osg-testing stashcache-cache-server


If installing authenticated StashCache Cache server, you need an additional package:

[email protected] # yum install --enablerepo=osg-testing stashcache-cache-server-auth

Configuring the Cache

First, you must create a "cache directory", which will be used to store downloaded files. By default this is /stash. We recommend using a separate file system for the cache directory, with at least 1 TB of storage available.


The cache directory must be writable by the xrootd:xrootd user and group.

The stashcache-cache-server provides a default configuration file, /etc/xrootd/xrootd-stashcache-cache-server.cfg, which must be customized for your cache.

The most common lines to customize are:

  • all.sitename YOUR_SITE_NAME: The registered OSG resource name. This must be changed.
  • set cachedir = /stash: The location of the cache directory for this service.
  • *.trace, pss.setopt: These control the logging verbosity of the cache. The defaults are relatively high in order to aid in debugging. These lines can be commented out to reduce logging; however, if issues occur, OSG support may ask you to re-enable them.
  • pfc.ram 7g: The amount of RAM the caching service should target to use.

The Authfile specifies which files and directories can be read, relative to the cache directory (cachedir in the main config).

An example:

[email protected] # cat /etc/xrootd/Authfile-noauth
u * /user/ligo -rl / rl

This permits all users (u *) to read all directories (/ rl) except those under /user/ligo (/user/ligo -rl); the /user/ligo directory should only be readable in authenticated setups. For more details, see the XRootD security documentation.

Configuring the Authenticated Cache (Optional)

The authenticated cache service is a separate instance of the StashCache cache service, and runs alongside the unauthenticated instance. You should make sure that the unauthenticated instance is functioning before setting up the authenticated instance. Before proceeding, make sure you have followed the prerequisite steps.

Add Authfile for authenticated cache

The Authfile for the authenticated cache is located in /etc/xrootd/Authfile-auth. This is a separate file from the non-authenticated cache Authfile.

Since the authenticated cache runs alongside the unauthenticated cache, care must be taken to avoid conflicts between the two. In particular, paths that are accessible via the authenticated cache should not be accessible via the unauthenticated cache, and vice versa.

As an example:

[email protected] # cat /etc/xrootd/Authfile-auth
g /osg/ligo /user/ligo rl
u ligo /user/ligo rl

This permits users in the VOMS group /osg/ligo and users mapped to ligo to read and list anything under /user/ligo.

When ready with configuration, you may start your Cache server.

Configuring Optional Features

Adjust disk utilization

To adjust the disk utilization of your StashCache cache, modify the values of pfc.diskusage in /etc/xrootd/xrootd-stashcache-cache-server.cfg:

pfc.diskusage 0.98 0.99

The first value and second values correspond to the low and high usage watermarks, respectively, in fractions. When the high watermark is reached, the XRootD service will automatically purge cache objects down to the low watermark.

Enable remote debugging

This feature enables remote debugging via the digFS read-only file system, it's optional line in the config file that was created when configuring the cache:

xrootd.diglib * /etc/xrootd/

where /etc/xrootd/ may have following content:

all allow host
all allow host h=*

Managing StashCache and associated services

StashCache daemons are managed by systemd units. First ensure that your cache directory (default /stash) is mounted, then ensure you enable (set to start at boot) and start the StashCache-related services.

As a reminder, here are common service commands (all run as root) for EL7:

To... On EL7, run the command...
Start a service systemctl start <SERVICE-NAME>
Stop a service systemctl stop <SERVICE-NAME>
Enable a service to start on boot systemctl enable <SERVICE-NAME>
Disable a service from starting on boot systemctl disable <SERVICE-NAME>

Public Cache Services

Software Service name Notes
XRootD [email protected] The xrootd daemon, which performs the data transfers
HTCondor condor.service Report cache statistics to central OSG collector
Fetch CRL fetch-crl-boot and fetch-crl-cron Required to authenticate monitoring services. See CA documentation for more info

Authenticated Cache Services

In addition to the public cache services, there are three systemd units specific to the authenticated cache.

Software Service name Notes
XRootD [email protected] The xrootd daemon which performs the authenticated data transfers
xrootd-renew-proxy.service Renew a proxy for authenticated downloads to the cache
xrootd-renew-proxy.timer Trigger daily proxy renewal

Testing Functionality

The cache server functions as a normal HTTP server and can interact with typical HTTP clients, such as curl.

[email protected] $ curl -O http://cache_host:8000/user/dweitzel/public/blast/queries/query1

Test Cache server reports to HTCondor collector

To verify the cache is reporting to the central collector, run the following command:

[email protected] $ condor_status -any -l -const "Name==\"[email protected]`hostname`\""

Where hostname is the string returned by the hostname command. The output of the above command should provide an HTCondor ClassAd that details the status of your cache.

Registering the Cache

To be part of the OSG StashCache Federation, your cache must be registered with the OSG. The service type is "XRootD cache server"

Once the cache has been registered, open a help ticket with your cache name. Mention in your ticket that you would like to "Finalize the cache registration."

Getting Help

To get assistance, please use the this page or contact directly