GLADE File Spaces

Home space | Scratch space | Work space | Project space | Checking space usage

The Globally Accessible Data Environment—a centralized file service known as GLADE—uses high-performance GPFS shared file system technology to give users a common view of their data across the HPC, analysis, and visualization resources that CISL manages.

GLADE file spaces are intended as work areas for day-to-day tasks and are well suited for managing software projects, scripts, code, and data sets. They are available by default except for project spaces.

File space Quota Backup Purge
10 GB Yes Not purged User home directory
10 TB No See below Temporary
computational space
512 GB No Not purged User work space
N/A No Not purged Project space allocations
(via allocation request)


Data can remain in each of these spaces in accordance with the policies detailed below. The policies are subject to change; any changes necessary will be announced in advance.

CISL backs up the GLADE home file space daily and also creates snapshots to enable users to recover deleted files quickly and easily.

CISL does not provide backups of scratch, work, and project spaces. You are responsible for the safe storage of any data that must be preserved.

Best practice: Check your space usage regularly, and remove data that you no longer need.

You can conserve GLADE space by storing large files, such as tar files, rather than numerous small, individual files. This is because the system allocates a minimum amount of space for each file, no matter how small.

On /glade/scratch, where the block size is 4 MB, the smallest amount of space the system can allocate to a file, including directories and symlinks, is 128 KB (the "sub-block" size). Any files smaller than 128 KB are still allocated 128 KB, so they require more space than you might expect. The same applies to the work and project spaces in /glade/p, while /glade/u has a block size of 512 KB and a minimum sub-block allocation of 16 KB.

Home space

Each user has a 10-GB /glade/u/home/username space that is ideal for managing scripts, source code, and small data sets. CISL also creates snapshots to enable users to recover deleted files quickly and easily.

Backup policy

  • Your /glade/u/home directory will be backed up daily while your account is open. Each daily backup will be kept for three weeks. The length of time backups will be kept may change with no prior notice due to resource constraints.
  • Core dump files may or may not be backed up at CISL’s discretion. Core dump file names typically follow this format: core.xxxxx (where the extension can include from one to five digits.)
  • CISL does not purge or scrub users' home directories.

Data retention policy

  • When your account is closed, your home directory is removed from GLADE and retained in HPSS in accordance with the HPSS orphaned and abandoned files policy.
  • Core dump files are not archived.

Scratch file space

Each user has a /glade/scratch/username space by default, with an individual quota of 10 TB. The scratch file space is intended to support output from large-scale capability runs as well as computing and analysis workflows across CISL-managed resources. It is a temporary space for data that will be analyzed and removed within a short amount of time.

If you will need to occupy more than your quota of scratch space at some point, request a temporary increase by emailing Include a paragraph justifying your need for additional space.

Purge policy

Individual files are removed from /glade/scratch/username automatically if they have not been accessed (modified or read, for example) in more than 90 days. In addition:

  • If /glade/scratch remains significantly above 50% full for more than a week, CISL will review and potentially shorten the 90-day retention period.
  • We will announce in advance any changes to the 90-day retention period.

Best practice: To help us avoid the need to shorten the 90-day retention period, please use this space conscientiously.

Delete files that you no longer need as soon as you're done with them rather than leave large amounts of data sitting untouched for the full 90 days. If you need to retain data on disk for more than 90 days, consider using your /glade/p/work space or requesting an allocated project space.

You may not run touch scripts to circumvent the time limits.

Data retention policy

  • When your account is closed, files are purged automatically as they become 90 days old.
  • Files are not recoverable from backups, as there are none.

Work space

Your /glade/p/work/username space is best suited for actively working with data sets over time periods greater than what is permitted in the scratch space.

The default quota for these spaces is 512 GB. If space is available, you may request a temporary increase of up to 1 TB.

Purge policy

  • The /glade/p/work space is not purged or scrubbed.

Data retention policy

  • When your user account is closed, files are retained for 30 days before being deleted.
  • Files are not recoverable from backups, as there are none.

Project space

Dedicated project spaces are available through our allocations process to support longer-term disk needs that are not easily accommodated by the scratch or work spaces. Allocations for project spaces are made to collaborative groups of users through the University/CHAP, CSL, or NCAR allocations processes. The allocations are based on project needs and resource availability. Requests are reviewed according to the various allocation schedules.

If you have an allocation, you can request a project space via the online request form. Justifications for project spaces are scrutinized closely. Carefully document which parts of your data and data workflow cannot be accommodated within the home, scratch, or work file spaces and policies.

If you have a user account and project space but lack the directory permissions you need for that space, email your request for changes to Please identify the directories and the permissions you are requesting.

Purge/backup policy

  • Project spaces are not backed up. You are responsible for archiving your own data.
  • CISL does not purge or scrub files from project spaces.

Data retention policy

  • You have 30 days to remove your data after your allocation expires.
  • You are responsible for saving (moving or archiving) any data that you need to retain before the 30-day period expires.
  • 30 days after your allocation expires, CISL will delete all data and remove your project space.
  • Files are not recoverable from backups, as there are none.

Checking space usage

Knowing your quotas and usage is important

If you reach your disk quotas for the GLADE file spaces, you may encounter problems until you remove files to make more space available. For example, you may not be able to log in, the system may appear hung, you may not be able to access some of your directories or files, your batch jobs may fail, and commands may not work as expected.

If you cannot log in or execute commands, contact You can check your space usage as shown below.

gladequota command

This single command will generate a report showing quota and usage information for your GLADE home, scratch, work, and active project spaces (/glade/u/home/username, /glade/scratch/username, and so on):


The ncarbinlibs module, which is loaded by default when you log in, must remain loaded for this to work.