Configuring Alluxio with Swift

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This guide describes how to configure Alluxio with an under storage system supporting the Swift API.

Initial Setup

First, the Alluxio binaries must be on your machine. You can either compile Alluxio, or download the binaries locally.

Then, if you haven’t already done so, create your configuration file with bootstrapConf command. For example, if you are running Alluxio on your local machine, ALLUXIO_MASTER_HOSTNAME should be set to localhost

./bin/alluxio bootstrapConf <ALLUXIO_MASTER_HOSTNAME> swift 

Alternatively, you can also create the configuration file from the template and set the contents manually.

cp conf/ conf/

Configuring Alluxio

You need to configure Alluxio to use Swift as its under storage system by modifying conf/ The first modification is to specify the Swift under storage system address. You specify it by modifying conf/ to include:


Where <swift-container> is an existing Swift container.

The following configuration should be provided in the conf/


Possible values of <swift-use-public> are true, false. Possible values of <swift-auth-model> are keystone, tempauth, swiftauth. When using keystone authentication, the following parameter can optionally be set


Alternatively, these configuration settings can be set in the conf/ file. More details about setting configuration parameters can be found in Configuration Settings.

On the successful authentication, Keystone will return two access URLs: public and private. If Alluxio is used inside company network and Swift is located on the same network it is adviced to set value of <swift-use-public> to false.

Accessing IBM SoftLayer object store

Using the Swift module also makes the IBM SoftLayer object store an option as an under storage system for Alluxio. SoftLayer requires <swift-auth-model> to be configured as swiftauth

Running Alluxio Locally with Swift

After everything is configured, you can start up Alluxio locally to see that everything works.

./bin/alluxio format
./bin/ local

This should start an Alluxio master and an Alluxio worker. You can see the master UI at http://localhost:19999.

Next, you can run a simple example program:

./bin/alluxio runTests

After this succeeds, you can visit your Swift container to verify the files and directories created by Alluxio exist. For this test, you should see files named like:

swift://<SWIFT CONTAINER>/alluxio/data/default_tests_files/Basic_CACHE_THROUGH

To stop Alluxio, you can run:

./bin/ all

Running functional test with IBM SoftLayer

Configure your Swift or SoftLayer account in the tests/pom.xml, where authMethodKey should be keystone or tempauth or swiftauth. To run functional tests execute

mvn test -PswiftTest -pl tests

In case of failures, logs located under tests/target/logs. You may also activate heap dump via

-XX:+HeapDumpOnOutOfMemoryError -XX:HeapDumpPath=/location/dump

Swift Access Control

If Alluxio security is enabled, Alluxio enforces the access control inherited from underlying object storage.

The Swift credentials specified in Alluxio (fs.swift.user, fs.swift.tenant and fs.swift.password) represents a Swift user. Swift service backend checks the user permission to the container. If the given Swift user does not have the right access permission to the specified container, a permission denied error will be thrown. When Alluxio security is enabled, Alluxio loads the container ACL to Alluxio permission on the first time when the metadata is loaded to Alluxio namespace.

Mount point sharing

If you want to share the Swift mount point with other users in Alluxio namespace, you can enable

Permission change

In addition, chown/chgrp/chmod to Alluxio directories and files do NOT propagate to the underlying Swift containers nor objects.