parent.config

The parent.config file identifies the parent proxies used in an cache hierarchy. Use this file to perform the following configuration:

  • Set up parent cache hierarchies, with multiple parents and parent failover
  • Configure selected URL requests to bypass parent proxies

Traffic Server uses the parent.config file only when the parent caching option is enabled (refer to Configuring Traffic Server to Use a Parent Cache).

After you modify the parent.config file, run the traffic_ctl config reload command to apply your changes. When you apply the changes to one node in a cluster, Traffic Server automatically applies the changes to all other nodes in the cluster.

Format

Each line in the parent.config file must contain a parent caching rule. Traffic Server recognizes three space-delimited tags:

primary_destination=value secondary_specifier=value  action=value

The following list shows the possible primary destinations and their allowed values.

dest_domain
A requested domain name, and its subdomains.
dest_host
A requested hostname.
dest_ip
A requested IP address or range of IP addresses separated by a dash (-).
url_regex
A regular expression (regex) to be found in a URL

The secondary specifiers are optional in the parent.config file. The following list shows the possible secondary specifiers and their allowed values. Every line in the parent.config file must contain either a parent= or go_direct= directive.

port
A requested URL port.
scheme
A request URL protocol: http or https.
prefix
A prefix in the path part of a URL.
suffix
A file suffix in the URL.
method

A request URL method. It can be one of the following:

  • get
  • post
  • put
  • trace
time
A time range, such as 08:00-14:00, during which the parent cache is used to serve requests.
src_ip
A client IP address.
internal
A boolean value, true or false, specifying if the rule should match (or not match) a transaction originating from an internal API. This is useful to differentiate transaction originating from an ATS plugin.

The following list shows the possible actions and their allowed values.

parent
An ordered list of parent servers. If the request cannot be handled by the last parent server in the list, then it will be routed to the origin server. You can specify either a hostname or an IP address, but; you must specify the port number.
secondary_parent
An optional ordered list of secondary parent servers. This optional list may only be used when round_robin is set to consistent_hash. If the request cannot be handled by a parent server from the parent list, then the request will be re-tried from a server found in this list using a consistent hash of the url.
parent_is_proxy

One of the following values:

  • true - This is the default. The list of parents and secondary parents

    are proxy cache servers.

  • false - The list of parents and secondary parents are the origin

    servers go_direct flag is ignored and origins are selected using the specified round_robin algorithm. The FQDN is removed from the http request line.

parent_retry
  • simple_retry - If the parent origin server returns a 404 response on a request a new parent is selected and the request is retried. The number of retries is controlled by max_simple_retries which is set to 1 by default.
  • unavailable_server_retry - If the parent returns a 503 response or if the reponse matches a list of http 5xx responses defined in unavailable_server_retry_responses, the currently selected parent is marked down and a new parent is selected to retry the request. The number of retries is controlled by max_unavailable_server_retries which is set to 1 by default.
  • both - This enables both simple_retry and unavailable_server_retry as described above.
unavailable_server_retry_responses
If parent_retry is set to either unavailable_server_retry or both, this parameter is a comma separated list of http 5xx response codes that will invoke the unavailable_server_retry described in the parent_retry section. By default, unavailable_server_retry_responses is set to 503.
max_simple_retries
By default the value for max_simple_retries is 1. It may be set to any value in the range 1 to 5. If parent_retry is set to simple_retry or both a 404 reponse from a parent origin server will cause the request to be retried using a new parent at most 1 to 5 times as configured by max_simple_retries.
max_unavailable_server_retries
By default the value for max_unavailable_server_retries is 1. It may be set to any value in the range 1 to 5. If parent_retry is set to unavailable_server_retries or both a 503 reponse by default or any http 5xx response listed in the list unavailable_server_retry_responses from a parent origin server will cause the request to be retried using a new parent after first marking the current parent down. The request will be retried at most 1 to 5 times as configured by max_unavailable_server_retries.
round_robin

One of the following values:

  • true - Traffic Server determines the parent based on client IP address.
  • strict - Traffic Server machines serve requests strictly in turn. For example: machine proxy1 serves the first request, proxy2 serves the second request, and so on.
  • false - Round robin selection does not occur.
  • consistent_hash - consistent hash of the url so that one parent is chosen for a given url. If a parent is down, the traffic that would go to the down parent is rehashed amongst the remaining parents. The other traffic is unaffected. Once the downed parent becomes available, the traffic distribution returns to the pre-down state.
  • latched - The first parent in the list is marked as primary and is always chosen until connection errors cause it to be marked down. When this occurs the next parent in the list then becomes primary. The primary will wrap back to the first parent in the list when it is the last parent in the list and is marked down due to a connection error. Newly chosen primary parents marked as unavailable will then be restored if the failure retry time has elapsed and the transaction using the primary succeeds.
go_direct

One of the following values:

  • true - requests bypass parent hierarchies and go directly to the origin server.
  • false - requests do not bypass parent hierarchies.
qstring

One of the following values:

  • consider - Use the query string when finding a parent.
  • ignore - Do not consider the query string when finding a parent. This is especially useful when using the consistent_hash selection strategy, and a random query string would prevent a consistent parent selection.

Examples

The following rule configures a parent cache hierarchy consisting of Traffic Server (which is the child) and two parents, p1.x.com and p2.x.com. Traffic Server forwards the requests it cannot serve to the parent servers p1.x.com and p2.x.com in a round-robin fashion:

dest_domain=. method=get parent="p1.x.com:8080; p2.y.com:8080" round_robin=true

The following rule configures Traffic Server to route all requests containing the regular expression politics and the path /viewpoint directly to the origin server (bypassing any parent hierarchies):

url_regex=politics prefix=/viewpoint go_direct=true

The following configures Traffic Server to route http requests for example.com (neither https nor www.example.com would match) through parent servers. Each url will be hashed to a specific parent. If the chosen parent has been marked down, a parent from the secondary ring will be chosen for the retry.:

dest_host=example.com scheme=http parent="p1.x.com:80,p2.x.com:80" secondary_parent="p3.x.com:80,p4.x.com:80" round_robin=consistent_hash go_direct=false