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Your collaboration identity

Critical to the use of computing resources within IGWN is acquiring, and managing, a collaboration identity. This identity will uniquely define your membership in the collaboration, and will be used to assign privileges to you, including access to computing resources such as wikis and documents.

Obtaining a collaboration identity


Work in progress

This section is incomplete, we welcome contributions to complete this.


In LIGO (the LSC and the LIGO Lab), all members are assigned a unique 'LIGO.ORG' identity that is used across all LIGO-operated computing services. To register for a LIGO account, go to and complete the relevant form.


For Virgo members, the identity from your home institution is used for authorisation and access management, please contact your group leader for detailed information.

Using your identity to access computing services


The IGWN collaborations rely heavily on a technology standard called X.509 to authenticate users and authorise access to data and services.

In a typical workflow, users authenticate using their institutional or collaboration identity to create an X.509 credential that is valid for a short amount of time (normally a few days). This credential can then be leveraged to gain access to various computing centres and services.


KAGRA members are currently unable to acquire X.509 credentials that can be used to gain access to IGWN services. However, this will hopefully change in the near future, and the workflow will be very similar to that for LIGO.


LIGO members can create X.509 credentials when they are required using one of the following tools:

  • ecp-get-cert, from the ciecplib Python Package
  • ligo-proxy-init, from the LDG Client package

For more details on how to create, or refresh, an X.509 credential, see below.


Getting a grid certificate from your home institution

Please get in touch with your Home Institution in order to obtain a GRID-enabled X.509 certificate. Once the certificate is obtained, install it on the machine(s) you intend to use to connect to the IGWN resources, following the instructions provided by your home institution.

The certificate may come in many different formats. In the end it should be converted to an X.509 certificate and then split, extracting the private key and your own public certificate. These two files should be placed in ~/.globus and are userkey.pem and usercert.pem. To get certificate format specific instructions to extract these two certificate components please refer to your Home Institution instructions. The same ~/.globus folder with the two contained files should be present on any machine from which you expect to be able to create new proxy certificates (e.g. your laptop, a workstation and your home directory on any remote submission machine of IGWN).

Virgo VOMS

Once you have a valid certificate, you are allowed to complete the procedure for the registration of your certificate in the Virgo VOMS (Virtual Organization Membership Service) by connecting to this page. When opening this page a web browser prompt should ask you to provide a certificate to connect to the website. Select your X.509 certificate from the suggestions or manually select it if needed.

Once connected to the page you can apply for VOMS memberships using the provided button. Apply for /virgo and /virgo/virgo memberships selecting them from the dropdown menu.

You'll be notified by email upon membership approval.

Install the VOMS client package

VOMS users will need to install the VOMS client software package in order to use their Virgo identity, just search for voms* in your system's software package manager.

LIGO identities for Virgo members

Virgo members get LIGO.ORG identities

In order to workaround differences in collaboration identity management, all Virgo Collaboration members are also given a LIGO.ORG identity, which should be used to gain access to LIGO- or IGWN-operated computing centres, including the IGWN HTCondor submission points.