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The LIGO Data Grid (LDG)

The LIGO Data Grid (LDG) is a coordinated set of distributed computing centres operated by LIGO member groups as a subset of the IGWN Computing Grid. These computing centres share authentication infrastructure, among other things, to present a similar user experience across locations.

Requesting an account

To request an account on the LIGO Data Grid, please complete the form at

Access to the LIGO Data Grid

LIGO.ORG account holders can access the LIGO Data Grid in a few different ways:

  1. Indirectly with ssh via
  2. Directly with ssh using SSH key
  3. Directly with 'ssh' using Kerberos TGT
  4. Directly with gsissh - soon to be deprecated

1. The portal

The SSH portal can be accessed using a LIGO.ORG username and password


Upon login, users will be presented with an interactive menu from which to choose the host to be connected to. login menu

::: LIGO Data Grid Login Menu :::

Select from these LDG sites:
 0. Logout
 1. CDF - Cardiff University, Cardiff (UK) [Registered Users Only]
 2. CIT - California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA (USA)
 3. LHO - LIGO Hanford Observatory - Hanford, WA (USA)
 4. LLO - LIGO Livingston Observatory - Livingston, LA (USA)
 5. NIK - Dutch National e-Infrastructure, Amsterdam (Netherlands)
 6. PSU - Penn State University, Pennsylvania, PA (USA)
 7. UWM - Center for Gravitation, Cosmology & Astrophysics (Milwaukee, WI, USA)
 8. IUCAA - Inter-University Centre for Astronomy & Astrophysics, Pune (India)
 Z. Specify alternative user account

Enter selection from the list above:

2. Direct SSH access with an SSH key

LIGO.ORG account holders can manage SSH keys for use in accessing the LIGO Data Grid at

KAGRA account holders can manage SSH keys for use in accessing the LIGO Data Grid at

Once an SSH key has been uploaded, it can be used to connect directly to the desired computing centre host:

ssh albert.einstein@<hostname>

where <hostname> should be replaced with the name of the target login host, e.g. (the Hawk login host).

Please refer to the documentation for each computing centre for a list of login host names.

3. Direct access with Kerberos TGT

Kerberos credential is now supported at CIT, LHO and LLO for SSH sessions. For detailed instruction, go to

4. Direct access with GSISSH - soon to be deprecated

LIGO.ORG account holders can connect to LDG hosts using gsissh, an extensions of SSH that uses a pre-created credential.

Install the LDG-Client

In order to connect to the LDG clusters, the client tools that enable authentication (and authorisation) need to be installed. Installation instructions, for various supported platforms, can be found here.

With the LDG-Client software installed, users can create a personal X.509 grid proxy via:

ligo-proxy-init albert.einstein


Replace albert.einstein with your LIGO.ORG username.

and can then continue to access an LDG host using gsissh: