Globus is the recommended way to move significant amounts of data between NERSC and other sites. Globus addresses many of the common challenges faced by researchers in moving, sharing, and archiving large volumes of data. With Globus, you hand-off data movement tasks to a hosted service that manages the entire operation, monitoring performance and errors, retrying failed transfers, correcting problems automatically whenever possible, and reporting status to keep you informed while you focus on your research. Visit for documentation on its easy to use web interface and its versatile REST/API for building scripted tasks and operations.


Globus is available as a free service that any user can access. You can log into Globus web interface with your NERSC credentials (by selecting NERSC in the drop down menu of supported identity providers) or using many of the other supported providers listed that you can authenticate against. NERSC maintains several Globus endpoints that can be activated for individual use by any NERSC user. The list of endpoints are provided in the table below.

Endpoint Name Description Recommended Use
NERSC DTN Multi-node, high performance transfer system with access to all NERSC Global File systems (NGF) as well as Cori Scratch Almost all data transfers needs into & out of NERSC
NERSC HPSS Single node system connected directly to the NERSC HPSS tape archive Remote transfers into & out of HPSS
NERSC Cori Originally a dual-node system needed for accessing the Cori scratch file system. The endpoint is the same as NERSC DTN Use NERSC DTN instead
NERSC DTN-JGI Single node system that was used to access JGI-specific file systems, which are now connected to the NERSC DTN servers. Use NERSC DTN instead
NERSC SHARE Single node system with read-only access to the project file system Shared Globus endpoint


Be aware that Globus will follow hard links and copy the data to the target directory. Depending on the way the directory or file is transferred, it will also follow soft links. You can find details here:


To transfer files into/out of your laptop or desktop computer, you can install a Globus connect (personal) server to configure an endpoint on your personal device.

Globus Sharing

Data can be shared at NERSC using Globus Sharing. Currently shared endpoints are read-only, no writing is allowed. To share data, create a "gsharing" directory in your repo's project directory. Then open a ticket and let us know the directory path you'd like to share (we currently have to manually update the configuration file to allow directories to be shared). Once you hear back from us, go to the Globus endpoint web page and search for the "NERSC SHARE" endpoint. Click on the "Shares" tab and select "Add a Shared Endpoint". This will bring you to a screen where you can give your shared endpoint a name and fill in the path you'd like to share. Currently sharing is limited to /global/project/projectdirs/<your_repo_name>/gsharing and subdirectories (and the dna file system for JGI users). Once you click "Create Share" it will take you to another screen where you can share this endpoint with specific Globus users or with all Globus users (these users do not have to be NERSC users). You can also make other Globus users administrators, which will mean that they will have the power to add or remove other users from the shared endpoint.

Command Line Globus Transfers

Globus SDK

Globus provides a python based SDK (Software Development Kit) for doing data transfers, managing endpoints, etc. You can access this at NERSC by loading the globus-sdk module (module load globus-sdk). NERSC has written a helper script, to help with command line data transfers. You can use this script for internal transfers between NERSC file systems or for external transfers between two Globus endpoints provided you have the endpoint's UUID (which can be looked up on Globus' Endpoint Page). Usage is:

cori04> --help
usage: [-h] -s SOURCE -t TARGET -d OUT_DIR -i INFILES

Globus transfer helper

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -s SOURCE, --source SOURCE
                        source endpoint UUID
  -t TARGET, --target TARGET
                        target endpoint UUID
  -d OUT_DIR, --directory OUT_DIR
                        target endpoint output directory
  -i INFILES, --infiles INFILES
                        file containing list of full path of input files

This script also understands "hpss" (the NERSC HPSS Endpoint), "dtn" (the NERSC DTN Endpoint), or "cori" (the NERSC Cori Endpoint), so you won't need to look up the UUIDs for those endpoints.


If you are using Globus to read a large number (>100) of files from NERSC's Archive, please use this script. It will ensure that the files are read off in in tape order.

When you run this script, it will output a web page address. Paste this page into a browser and it will take you to a page where you can grant the native globus app permission to make transfers on your behalf (you may get a prompt to log into globus first if you don't already have an active session). Once you click "Allow" it will generate a one-time code. Paste this code back into the terminal at the prompt and push return. It will use this code to get a one-time authentication and generate a globus transfer on your behalf. It will print out the transfer ID which you cna use to check on the transfer on the Globus web page (or with the Globus SDK).


Transfer files from NERSC's HPSS Archive to another location

First, generate a list of files you'd like to transfer:

hsi -q ls -1 -R name_of_hpss_directory_or_file 2> gtransfer_list.txt
Then invoke the transfer script
cori04> -s hpss -t <target_endpoint_UUID> -d /your/destination/path -i gtransfer_list.txt
Please go to this URL and login:<super_mega_long_string_here>
Please enter the code you get after login here: <snipped>


Connection Errors Between NERSC and other endpoint

If you are getting errors that you cannot connect to the NERSC endpoint after you've activated it, please check with your system administrator that they are not blocking the IP of the NERSC host (you can find this information in the error message of the Activity pane on the globus web page). If they are not, please open a ticket with the IP address of the other endpoint and we will investigate further.

Trouble Activating a NERSC Endpoint

If you are having trouble activating a NERSC endpoint, please try logging into NIM to clear your authentication failures. If that still doesn't fix the issue, please open a ticket with the error and we'll investigate further.