This section is a brief description of DaemonCore. DaemonCore is a library that is shared among most of the HTCondor daemons which provides common functionality. Currently, the following daemons use DaemonCore:

  • condor_master

  • condor_startd

  • condor_schedd

  • condor_collector

  • condor_negotiator

  • condor_kbdd

  • condor_gridmanager

  • condor_credd

  • condor_had

  • condor_replication

  • condor_transferer

  • condor_job_router

  • condor_lease_manager

  • condor_rooster

  • condor_shared_port

  • condor_defrag

  • condor_c-gahp

  • condor_c-gahp_worker_thread

  • condor_dagman

  • condor_ft-gahp

  • condor_rooster

  • condor_shadow

  • condor_shared_port

  • condor_transferd

  • condor_vm-gahp

Most of DaemonCore’s details are not interesting for administrators. However, DaemonCore does provide a uniform interface for the daemons to various Unix signals, and provides a common set of command-line options that can be used to start up each daemon.

DaemonCore and Unix signals

One of the most visible features that DaemonCore provides for administrators is that all daemons which use it behave the same way on certain Unix signals. The signals and the behavior DaemonCore provides are listed below:


Causes the daemon to reconfigure itself.


Causes the daemon to gracefully shutdown.


Causes the daemon to quickly shutdown.

Exactly what gracefully and quickly means varies from daemon to daemon. For daemons with little or no state (the condor_kbdd, condor_collector and condor_negotiator) there is no difference, and both SIGTERM and SIGQUIT signals result in the daemon shutting itself down quickly. For the condor_master, a graceful shutdown causes the condor_master to ask all of its children to perform their own graceful shutdown methods. The quick shutdown causes the condor_master to ask all of its children to perform their own quick shutdown methods. In both cases, the condor_master exits after all its children have exited. In the condor_startd, if the machine is not claimed and running a job, both the SIGTERM and SIGQUIT signals result in an immediate exit. In the condor_schedd, if there are no jobs currently running, there will be no condor_shadow processes, and both signals result in an immediate exit. However, with jobs running, a graceful shutdown causes the condor_schedd to ask each condor_shadow to gracefully vacate the job it is serving, while a quick shutdown results in a hard kill of every condor_shadow.

For all daemons, a reconfigure results in the daemon re-reading its configuration file(s), causing any settings that have changed to take effect. See the Introduction to Configuration section for full details on what settings are in the configuration files and what they do.

DaemonCore and Command-line Arguments

The second visible feature that DaemonCore provides to administrators is a common set of command-line arguments that all daemons understand. These arguments and what they do are described below:

-a string

Append a period character (‘.’) concatenated with string to the file name of the log for this daemon, as specified in the configuration file.


Causes the daemon to start up in the background. When a DaemonCore process starts up with this option, it disassociates itself from the terminal and forks itself, so that it runs in the background. This is the default behavior for the condor_master. Prior to 8.9.7 it was the default for all HTCondor daemons.

-c filename

Causes the daemon to use the specified filename as a full path and file name as its global configuration file. This overrides the CONDOR_CONFIG environment variable and the regular locations that HTCondor checks for its configuration file.


Use dynamic directories. The $(LOG), $(SPOOL), and $(EXECUTE) directories are all created by the daemon at run time, and they are named by appending the parent’s IP address and PID to the value in the configuration file. These values are then inherited by all children of the daemon invoked with this -d argument. For the condor_master, all HTCondor processes will use the new directories. If a condor_schedd is invoked with the -d argument, then only the condor_schedd daemon and any condor_shadow daemons it spawns will use the dynamic directories (named with the condor_schedd daemon’s PID).

Note that by using a dynamically-created spool directory named by the IP address and PID, upon restarting daemons, jobs submitted to the original condor_schedd daemon that were stored in the old spool directory will not be noticed by the new condor_schedd daemon, unless you manually specify the old, dynamically-generated SPOOL directory path in the configuration of the new condor_schedd daemon.


Causes the daemon to start up in the foreground. Instead of forking, the daemon runs in the foreground. Since 8.9.7, this has been the default for all daemons other than the condor_master.

NOTE: Before 8.9.7, When the condor_master started up daemons, it would do so with the -f option, as it has already forked a process for the new daemon. There will be a -f in the argument list for all HTCondor daemons that the condor_master spawns.

-k filename

For non-Windows operating systems, causes the daemon to read out a PID from the specified filename, and send a SIGTERM to that process. The daemon started with this optional argument waits until the daemon it is attempting to kill has exited.

-l directory

Overrides the value of LOG as specified in the configuration files. Primarily, this option is used with the condor_kbdd when it needs to run as the individual user logged into the machine, instead of running as root. Regular users would not normally have permission to write files into HTCondor’s log directory. Using this option, they can override the value of LOG and have the condor_kbdd write its log file into a directory that the user has permission to write to.

-local-name name

Specify a local name for this instance of the daemon. This local name will be used to look up configuration parameters. The Configuration File Macros section contains details on how this local name will be used in the configuration.

-p port

Causes the daemon to bind to the specified port as its command socket. The condor_master daemon uses this option to ensure that the condor_collector and condor_negotiator start up using well-known ports that the rest of HTCondor depends upon them using.

-pidfile filename

Causes the daemon to write out its PID (process id number) to the specified filename. This file can be used to help shutdown the daemon without first searching through the output of the Unix ps command.

Since daemons run with their current working directory set to the value of LOG, if a full path (one that begins with a slash character, /) is not specified, the file will be placed in the LOG directory.


Quiet output; write less verbose error messages to stderr when something goes wrong, and before regular logging can be initialized.

-r minutes

Causes the daemon to set a timer, upon expiration of which, it sends itself a SIGTERM for graceful shutdown.


Causes the daemon to print out its error message to stderr instead of its specified log file. This option forces the -f option.


Causes the daemon to print out version information and exit.