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Last update: Apr 1, 2000

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CASTOR project status

Olof Barring, Jean-Philippe Baud, Jean-Damien Durand

Speaker: Jean-Philippe Baud

  In January 1999, CERN began to develop CASTOR ("CERN Advanced STORage manager"). It is an evolution of SHIFT, which has been used at CERN for all experiments in the 1990's. CASTOR is more scalable than SHIFT and should be able to handle data for the overlapping run of the NA48 and COMPASS experiments, the latter starting in 2000. The sustained data rate for NA48 is > 25 MB/s while for COMPASS it will be > 35 MB/s. Scalability issues are solved by using multi-threading and database technology instead of a flat file for the stager catalog. The first tests show that we get really the full bandwidth of the drives and of the network even using PCs running Linux as low cost disk/tape servers. The software can be installed on any platform running Unix or Windows/NT. The CASTOR user interface is fully backward compatible with SHIFT and the product itself is very modular, so we will be able to put it in production component by component over the winter 1999/2000. Note that the modular and layered nature of CASTOR could permit easier sharing of software components between HEP sites. The functionality has been also greatly improved by providing a Hierarchical Storage Manager facility: a name server has been implemented, it is capable of using different databases (Cdb, Raima or Oracle) and a Tape Volume Allocator is currently being developed. The first tests of the name server show that we get excellent response time even for administrative tasks like listing large directories. A "Mock Data Challenge" test (7 days at 100MB/s sustained, i.e. around 60TB) will be attempted for ALICE in February 2000 using HPSS and CASTOR and we will report on the results.

Presentation:  PowerPoint Short Paper:  Adobe Acrobat pdf 

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