Summary of GDB meeting, March 11, 2015 (CERN)


Introduction - M. Jouvin

Planning for 2015 in Indico

  • No meeting in April (workshop in Okinawa)
  • October will probably be cancelled
    • Idea of co-locating with HEPiX on HEPiX side: echo not overwhelmingly positive (except if it was held on the Sunday before)
    • Budget constraints due to WLCG workshop in Okinawa on GDB side
    • Still the option to move the GDB week but Michel not in favor
      • Proved not to work well in the past
    • Decision in May

Pre-GDBs planned in the coming months: May and June at least

  • batch systems
  • volunteer computing, accounting
  • to be clarified by mid April

WLCG workshop: agenda pretty final


  • Collaboration meeting last week
  • Indigo Datacloud project approval expected to help
    • ARGUS in the cloud to use federated identities rather than X.509
  • New release with patches already in use at some sites being prepared
  • No new problems reported
  • Preparing for Java 8 support

Data preservation

Actions in progress

  • list of "class 2" services used by VOs: NIKHEF agreed to start a twiki page with the list they are aware of for the 3 VOs they support (ATLAS, ALICE, LHCb)
    • Will ask CMS to provide the missing information when the initial list has been created
  • Multicore accounting: still 15% of used resources not reporting the core count
    • Difficult to find how many sites are concerned
  • perfSonar


  • Jeff: where are we with the possibility to run IPv6-only WN? NIKHEF interested (wants to use containers).
    • Michel: better to talk directly with the IPv6 WG for details, should not be very far from making it possible
    • Ulf/Mattias: NDGF already doing much v6 for ATLAS. Main issue is storage. Still a few potentially problematic configuration between FAX and dCache.

SAM3 Update - Rucio Rama

SAM3 in production since last November.

  • More power to experiments
  • Increased flexibility in algorithms used
  • VOfeed used to aggregate services into sites and implement VO naming convention
  • Profiles used to define resources and algorithms to use for each VO service

Draft A/R report created at the end of each month: 10 days for asking for corrections/recompution

  • Recomputation can be triggered by experiments
  • Can set manually the site A/R in case of problems not related to site
    • Wrong data can be set to unkown and be ignored in A/R calculation

Common schema with SSB, combine several UIs like myWLCG and SUM

Recent fixes to ALICE profile to fix issues with sites not appearing (neither CREAM nor ARC)

  • Also NDGF T1 not appearing as a unique site

New profile for ATLAS: AnalysisAvailability

  • Simpler algorithm
  • Evaluated every 2h

Future developments

  • NoSQL storage
  • New operator: NOT
  • Numerical metrics
  • Combine data from several SSB instances


  • NIKHEF and SARA would like to appear as one site
    • possible, ask experiments
  • Integration into site Nagios: see PIC component presented at a past GDB (mid 2014)

EGI Future Plans and WLCG - P. Solagna

EGI Engage funded: engage EGI community towards Open Science Commons

  • Not only EGI: to be done in collaboration with other infrastructure projects (EUDAT, PRACE...)
  • Easy and integrated access to data, digital services, instruments, knowledge and expertise
  • User-centric approach: 40% of the project user-friven
    • Federated HTC and cloud services
    • Support of 7 RIs in ESFRI roadmap
  • 8 Meuros (1/3 of EGI Inspire), 30 months, 1169 person-months, 42 beneficiaries

Strong focus on federation

  • Security: evolution of AII infrastructure to enable distributed collaboration betwen diverse authn/authz technologies
    • Collaboration with AARC project
  • Accounting, monitoring, operation tools
  • PID registration service
  • Computing and data cloud federation
    • Including PaaS managed by EGI if any need/use case
    • Virtual appliance library (AppDB)
    • Federated GPGPU infrastructure
  • Service discoverability in EGI marketplace
  • Collaboration with EUDAT2020 and INDIGO DATACLOUD

Exploration of new business models

  • Pay for use
    • Currently EGI doing brokering/match making between site price advertized and potential customers
    • Not yet clear if EGI will play a role as a "proxy" to charge the customers: currently direct relationships between sites and customers
    • EGI will provide sites tools to do the billing
  • SLAs in a federated environment
  • Cross-border procurement of public services
  • Big data exploitation in various selected (private) sectors
  • Investigating the potential impact on EGI governance

Distributed Competence Center: support for ESFRI RIs

  • Help their VRE integration within EGI solutons
  • Co-development of solutions for specific needs
  • Promote RI technical services: training, scientific apps...
  • Foster reuse of solutions across RIs
  • Build a coordinated network of DCCs: European Open Knowledge Hub (EGI, ESFRI RIs, e-Infra...)

Prototype of an open data platform: federated storage and data solution providing sharing capabilities integrated with a federated cloud IaaS

  • Includes a dropbox-like service: plan to reuse an existing, proven solution
  • Deploy a best-of-breed existing tool as a prototype infrastructure: not necessary EGI only, not enough resources
  • Collaboration with OSG and Asia-Pacific partners


  • Jeff: is the pay-per-use really the role of EGI?
    • Currently no actual enforcement of pay-per-use: just an indicative billing
    • Not clear if EGI will play a role in the billing process or just offer a service to do the match making between offers and demands
    • pay-per-use is not intended for all communities: clearly not for WLCG (pledges are used to match offer and demand) but some communities, like ESA, say this would be their preferred mode
    • Need to have an added value to commercial cloud providers: not our role to compete directly with them
  • Jeff: why EGI has to deal long-tail science users, should be the role of NGIs
    • Peter: wording may be ambiguous but EGI is supporting NGIs rather than long-tail science users directly. But sometimes initial contact is going through EGI (during conferences for example) instead of NGIs. Also some countries/regions with no NGI or a weak NGI.
  • EGI clearly addressing new communities, not clear what space is there for a large existing community like WLCG
    • Operations and AAI R&d/evolution are important topics for collaboration
    • WLCG sites offering services to other communities important as well : ensure that procedures for WLCG and EGI resource provisioning don't diverge more than necessary else it will become a problem for sites

European Procurement Update - I. Bird

Several presentation about the European procurement idea during last Fall but not much positive feedback but funding agencies insisted about the need to make progress on this idea

  • Paper attached to agenda summarises the situation and the potential

European Science Cloud pilot projet

  • Bring together many stakeholders to buy workload capacity for WLCG at commercial cloud providers
    • Commercial resources to be available through GEANT, integrate with federated identities,
  • Funded by H2020 ICT8 call as Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) proposal to EC in April 2015 (14)
    • A group of research organizations pledge procurement money to the European Science Cloud
    • The project defines the technical requirements
    • PCP is the approach taken for LHC magnets where the products not yet existed: allows an exploration phase for defining the design and a prototype phase. Also a wrapping phase to prepare the project follow-up. In this case, 6 months for preparation, 18 months for implementation, 6 months for wrapping up.
    • EU funding is proportional to the project member contributions: reimburse at the end of the project up to 70% of member contributions (members need to fund the total budget initially).

Early works in the experiment and in HELIX NEBULA demonstrated the feasibility

  • Also some quotes at the end of Helix Nebula demonstrated the prices of commercial cloud services was closer to in-house resources for some use cases (in particuar simulation)

Buyers group: public orgnisations from WLCG collaboration

  • Procured services will count towards the buyers pledges in WLCG
    • Initially, participation proposed to all T1s
  • Other communities could benefit from procured services (~20%)

Timescale: project starting in Jan 2016, implementation by end of 2017

  • Would be in place for the second part of Run2


  • Do we have an initial list of interested partners?
    • Ian: not yet, still in discussions

WLCG Operational Costs - J. Flix

~100 answers to survey

  • 1 (anonymous) answer per site

5 areas surveyed

  • FTE effort spent on operation of various services
  • Service upgrades and changes
  • Communication
  • Monitoring
  • Service administration

Supported VOs

  • Most sites either dedicated to 1 LHC VO or supported most of them (3 or 4)
  • T2 typically support ~10 VOs but large distribution

FTE effort quantification

  • Aware of the potential inconsistency between sites but most obvious mis-interpretations fixed. Still need to be careful with conclusions.
  • Ticket handling effort: no clear correlation between the FTE spent on VO support and the number of LHC VO supported
    • A bit surprising... but inline with the grid promess!
  • TO/T1: FTE dominated by storage systems and "other WLCG tasks (experiment service, OS and configuration...)
    • Average of 12.8 FTEs per T1
  • T2: storage and other WLCG tasks also among the largest fraction but not in the same proportion as at T1. APEL is a major area for FTE effort at T2.
    • Average of 2.8 FTE/T2
    • Small effort for participation to WLCG TF and coordination
  • FTE effort seems to be clearly correlated to site size (based on the HS06 or PB delivered by site)
    • Less clear for storage than for CPU
  • Core grid/experiment services take more effort at T0/T1 than T2
    • APEL is the most often mentioned service at T2
  • Networking effort similar in T1s and T2s


  • Importance of experiment requests coming from WLCG Ops: no clear indication that something should be changed
    • Future analysis: may be interesting to correlate site responses with site size (decidated or multi-VO sites)
  • Possible improvements suggested
    • Better distinction between official requirements and suggestions
    • Blessing/endorsement of new service/protocol requirements by WLCG MB before making them a formal request
    • WLCG Ops bulletin. Maarten: we already have the WLCG Ops meeting minutes... Collect more feedback from sites before making new requests...
  • Encourage more participation to both HEPiX and GDB
  • Create site service specific e-groups
  • Consolidate information into open WLCG wikis
    • Currently often in experiment (protected) wikis
  • WLCG OpsCoord meeting: low regular participation from T2 but the majority reading the minutes
    • Still a small fraction not reading the minutes: need to address it
    • Suggestion for a shorter, more focused meeting (1h)
    • Time slot not entirely convenient for US and doesn't allow asian participation
    • Put more information from sites in the minutes
  • WLCG TF seen as useful
    • Most non participating sites said that it was because of the lack of manpower
  • Sites happy with GGUS
    • Easy programmatic access to current and historical contents would be welcome
    • Support for every MW component should be through GGUS
  • WLCG broadcast and GGUS tickets seen as the best channels to pass requests to sites
    • Reducing the number and the duplication of broadcasts make them more effective
    • Michel: a bit surprising compared to the experience where only tickets tend to get the actions done

Conclusion: some improvements needed, but generally things not too bad

Actions in Progress

OpsCoord Report - J. Flix

VOMRS finally decommissioned March 2!

  • Experiments acknowledge efforts by CERN-IT and VOMS-Admin developers

Savannah was decommissionned on Feb. 19

  • Inactive project archived
  • Others migrated to JIRA


  • UMD 3.11.0: APEL, CREAM-CE, GFAL2 and DPM
  • dCache: various bug fixes for different versions
  • New argus-papd (1.6.4) fixing issues seen with recent Java version
  • FTS 3.2.32: activity shares fixed

Freak vulnerability classified as low risk

LFC-LHCb decommissionned March 2

  • LFC to DIRAC migration successful
  • The only LFC instance left at CERN is the shared one: discussing the future with EGI


  • ALICE: high activity
  • ATLAS: cosmic rays data taking, MC15
    • Tricky pb with FTS shares understood and now fixed by developers
  • CMS: cosmic rays data taking, global Condor pool for Analysis and Production deployed
    • Also tape staging tests at Tier-1s ongoing
  • LHCb: restripping finished

2nd ARGUS meeting: see minutes and Michel introduction

Oliver K. proposed the creation of http deployment TF

  • Mandate approved: identify features required by exps, providing recipes and recommendations to sites
  • ATLAS, CMS and LHCb support the TF
    • ALICE currently not interested


  • Finishing Panda validation campaigned (63 sites covered)


  • T1s requested to deploy dual-stack perfSonar by April 1
  • FTS3 IPv6 testbed progressing
  • CERN CMVFS Stratum 1 working well in dual-stack

Multi-core deployment

  • Successfully shared resources between ATLAS and CMS

MW Readiness WG

  • Participating sites asked to deploy Package Reporter: progressing well
  • MW database view will indicate versions to use

Network Transfer and Metrics

  • perfSonar: see Michel introduction
  • Integration into experiments: LHCb pilot, extending the ATLAS FTS perf study to CMS and LHCb
  • Network issue between SARA and AGLT2 being investigated

RFC Proxies - M. Litmaath

Difference between legacy and RFC proxies: latter better supported, while legacy proxies have already given rise to issues

  • Should switch to RFC proxies this year

Status on service side

  • CMS have moved months ago
  • ALICE: Switching VOboxes to RFC proxies now
  • ATLAS and LHCb checking
  • Other players: SAM-Nagios proxy renewal needs an easy fix
  • Anything else?

UI clients

  • legacy proxies are still the default
  • RFC proxies could become default later this year (to be coordinated with EGI and OSG)


  • P. Solagna: EGI shares the goal of moving to RFC proxies asap, plan proposed seems realistic, no major problem foreseen. Happy to coordinate with WLCG on this
    • Change of default this year is probably okay for EGI

PreGDB Summaries

Discussion with Other Sciences - J. Templon

Coorganized with the Netherlands eScience Center NLeSC

  • Introduce HEP to NLeSC and other sciences to HEP
  • NLeSC: help scientific communities to address their computational challenges and use efficiently e-Infrastructure
    • Part of an ecosystem with e-Infrastructure and computer science: NLeSC doesn't operate any resource
    • Project based: provide expert manpower to a project for a certain duration
    • Interested into turning project developments into more generic solutions/services

Data challenge in Astronomy with next generation experiments (SKA): no possiblity to keep on disk intermediate data products

  • Streaming one algorith to another one, almost realtime
  • Close to challenges seen in LHC experiments

Data challenge

  • Strong move in HEP in adopting industry standards
  • HEP has experience in handling huge volume of data: 1 PB/week to tape...

Everybody interested by the contact

  • NLeSC interested further in further contacts, visit their site
  • NLeSC involved in SoftwareX which hosts a SW repository: why not to publish ROOT, GEANT4 or other HEP SW

Also see [[][summary].

Cloud Issues - M. Jouvin

Attendance: some 25 local, many remote

  • No experiment representtives in Amsterdam but a few remotely connected

Review of work in progress after the last meeting in September

  • Dynamic sharing of resources: Vcycle looks promising, a lot of improvements in the last 6 monts
    • Possibly complemented by fair-share scheduler for OpenStack
  • Accounting: still a lot of work to do but most solutions agreed
    • Still a potential issue about double counting resources as grid and cloud
  • Traceability: already some work done after the initial meeting one month ago
  • Data bridge very interesting: opening a way for using federated identity to access storage

Discussion about EGI federated cloud

  • Already a collaboration on accounting
  • Potential interest for the EGI monitoring infrastructure but requirement of OCCI may be an obstacle: more thoughs required
  • Should work in common on integration of federation identities

Also see summary

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