Storage Specialist

10 Mar 2017
End of advertisement period
09 Apr 2017
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time


The CERN IT Storage Group (ST) is responsible to enable data access for the laboratory, most notably to archive, preserve over the long term and distribute to the worldwide scientific community the LHC experimental data. This is presently implemented mainly with a disk/tape hybrid system (CASTOR: optimised for archiving), the large disk farms (EOS: for data analysis) and user-oriented systems (Linux home directory: AFS; cloud storage: CERNBOX). In total ST handles more than 200 petabyte of data across about 2,000 data servers (30,000 disks) and 20,000 high-capacity tapes.

The present data infrastructure is being evolved to extend its functionality and rationalise its deployment. New access protocols (POSIX file access, WebDAV) have been added to simplify data access for our clients (Linux, Mac and Windows), to increase the user experience (disconnected operations, cloud synchronisation, flexible web access) and to enable new way to process data combining local access, batch processing and web-based data systems. The next phase is the migration in the new infrastructure (including the AFS phase out for Linux users and absorbing some of the DFS usage of Windows users).

More information on the Department is at:


The primary focus of the activity will be to bring in production a uniform multi-platform data access for the AFS replacement project. The selected candidate will join the operation and support activities of the Filesystems and Data Operations (FDO) section.

As a technical engineer, you will:

  • Contribute to the validation and testing of the new system.
  • Prepare the roll out of the new system and support it the massive adoption phase, mainly from AFS and to a certain extent from DFS.
  • Contribute to the development of the tools and procedures to facilitate the migration into the new system.
  • Install, operate and support the software components of the FDO services, as well as participate to the on-call duty (support and incident response). 
  • Maintain/improve system documentation (procedures; regular reports; incident analysis; user documentation) together with other members of the FDO section. 


Bachelor's degree or equivalent relevant experience, in the field of computer engineering or a related field, or equivalent.

Experience and competencies

The candidate should have demonstrated practical experience in at least some of the following areas:

  • Linux and Windows operating system administration.
  • In-depth practical experience in scripting languages, as PERL or Python programming.
  • Experience with testing and troubleshooting distributed systems.

The following additional experience would be an asset:

  • Large disk storage systems; external storage networking; global filesystems or object stores; disk hardware technologies (SAS/SATA HD, SSD).
  • Linux cluster management, automation and monitoring tools.
  • Database technologies (SQL).
  • Kerberos based authentication, Public Key infrastructure and X-509 certificates.

The technical competencies required for this post are:

  • IT Operations: handling incidents and requests, executing changes, providing information and feedback to the service managers.
  • Systems installation/decommissioning.
  • Systems integration.
  • Usability evaluation.

The behavioural competencies required for this post are:

  • Achieving results: delivering high quality work on time and fulfilling expectations.
  • Communicating effectively: providing others with timely information.
  • Demonstrating flexibility: adapting quickly and resourcefully to shifting priorities and requirements.
  • Working in teams: working well in groups and readily fitting into a team; participating fully and taking an active role in team activities.
  • Working in the interest of the organization: behaving consistently with CERN's values and goals.

The language competencies required are:

  • Good knowledge of English is required; ability to draw-up technical specifications and/or scientific reports and to make oral presentations.
  • Basic knowledge of French or an undertaking to acquire it rapidly.

Eligibility and closing date

Employing a diverse and international workforce is a CERN core value and central to our success. We welcome applications from all Member States irrespective of gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, race, religion or personal situation.

This vacancy will be filled as soon as possible, and applications should normally reach us no later than 09.04.2017.

By applying here, you allow CERN to consider your application for any position it considers relevant with respect to your profile. Please ensure you update your profile regularly with any relevant information and that you inform the recruitment service if you wish your file to be removed from the database.

Note on Employment Conditions

We offer a limited-duration contract for a period of 5 years. Limited-duration contracts shall terminate by default on their date of expiry.
Subject to certain conditions, holders of limited-duration contracts may apply for an indefinite position.

These functions require:

  • Stand-by duty, when required by the needs of the Organization.
  • Work during nights, Sundays and official holidays, when required by the needs of the Organization.

Read more about employment conditions