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dCache is filesystem designed for storing large amounts of data. The data is stored amongst many server nodes, accessed through a single virtual filesystem by a variety of methods. The dCache filesystem used on stoomboot can be accessed via on nfs mount point from any of the stoomboot interactive or worker nodes. All files stored in dCache can be found under the mount point /dcache.

There are no backups of made of the dCache file system.

Files written to dCache are fixed and not changeable, see #Immutable Files. Other than this limitation dCache can be used pretty much as a normal file system.

Issues and problems with the file system should be sent to stbc-admin[AT]nikhef[DOT]nl.

Getting Started

To get a storage directory created for yourself please send a request to stbc-admin[AT]nikhef[DOT]nl. Don't forget to include which group you are working with as that's used to determine where in the storage hierarchy your directory is created.

Immutable Files

Once a file is written into dCache the contents of the file can not be changed.

This means a file CAN NOT be overwritten:

[stbc-i1 /dcache/test]$ echo 123 > test.file
[stbc-i1 /dcache/test]$ echo 1234 > test.file
-bash: test.file: Permission denied

and CAN NOT be appended to:

[stbc-i2 /dcache/test]$ echo 123 > test.file
[stbc-i2 /dcache/test]$ echo 4 >> test.file
-bash: test.file: Permission denied

and when deleting a file is always treated as being write protected (even if the writable bit is set):

[stbc-i2 /dcache/test]$ ll test.file
-rw-r--r--. 1 andrewp datagrid 4 May  4 09:57 test.file
[stbc-i2 /dcache/test]$ rm test.file
rm: remove write-protected regular file `test.file'? y

These limitations mean that dCache is NOT suited for such things as compiling code on, storing large files being actively edited (e.g. word documents) or storing files under a version control system.

No Backups

There are NO BACKUPS of files storage on the system.

Storage Space Organisation

The total storage space on the dCache storage nodes is about 550 TB. Each group has a directory under the main dcache directory:

[stbc-i4 ~]$ ll /dcache/
total 2
drwxr-xr-x. 4 root alice    512 Apr  1 11:46 alice
drwxr-sr-x. 5 root atlas    512 May  4 09:48 atlas
drwxrwsr-x. 3 root datagrid 512 Nov 13  2015 datagrid

User storage directories are under the appropriate group directory:

[stbc-i4 ~]$ ll /dcache/datagrid/
total 1
drwxr-sr-x. 1094 andrewp datagrid 512 May  4 09:59 andrewp

Storage space is assigned to each group under there group directory so all people within a group share the same group storage space allocation.

TO-DO: df doesn't give useful results for dcache so a web page with current data usage will be setup