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May 8 – 12, 2023
Norfolk Waterside Marriott
US/Eastern timezone

ECHO: optimising object store data access for Run-3 and the evolution towards HL-LHC

May 8, 2023, 12:00 PM
Norfolk Ballroom III-V (Norfolk Waterside Marriott)

Norfolk Ballroom III-V

Norfolk Waterside Marriott

235 East Main Street Norfolk, VA 23510
Oral Track 1 - Data and Metadata Organization, Management and Access Track 1 - Data and Metadata Organization, Management and Access


Walder, James (RAL, STFC, UKRI)


Data access at the UK Tier-1 facility at RAL is provided through its ECHO storage, serving the requirements for the WLGC and increasing numbers of other HEP and astronomy related communities.
ECHO is a Ceph-backed erasure-coded object store, currently providing in excess of 40PB of usable space, with frontend access to data provided via XRootD or gridFTP, using the libradosstriper library of Ceph.
The storage must service the needs of: high-throughput compute, with staged and direct file access passing through an XCache on each workernode; data access to compute running at storageless satellite sites; and, managed inter-site data transfers using the recently adopted HTTPS protocol (via WebDav), which includes multi-hop data transfers to and from RAL’s newly commissioned CTA tape endpoint.
A review of the experiences of providing data access via an object store within these data workflows is presented, including the details of the improvements necessary for the transition to WebDav, used for most inter-site data movements, and enhancements for direct-IO file access, where the development and optimisation of buffering and range coalescence strategies is explored.
In addition to serving the requirements of LHC Run-3, preparations for Run-4 and for large astronomy experiments is underway. One example is with ROOT-based data formats, where the evolution from a TTree to RNTuple data structure provides an opportunity for storage providers to benchmark and optimise against this new format. A comparison of the current performance between data formats within ECHO is presented and the details of potential improvements presented.

Consider for long presentation Yes

Primary author

Walder, James (RAL, STFC, UKRI)


Dewhurst, Alastair (STFC - RAL) Mr Byrne, Tom (STFC) Mr Johnson, Ian (RAL, STFC, UKRI) Mr Thomas, Jyothish (RAL, STFC, UKRI) Rogovskiy, Alexander ((RAL, STFC, UKRI))

Presentation materials