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Version: v1.22.x LTS

Using the Caching Service

Using the Caching Service

As an API developer, you can use the Caching Service as a storage solution to enable resource sharing between service instances, thereby ensuring High Availability of services. The Caching Service makes it possible to store, retrieve, and delete data associated with keys. The Caching Service is designed to make resource sharing possible for services that cannot be made stateless in two ways:

  • Using VSAM to store key/value pairs for production

  • Using InMemory

Note: In the current implementation of the Caching service, VSAM is required for the storage of key/value pairs for production, as VSAM is a native z/OS solution for storing key/value pairs.

The Caching service is available only for internal Zowe applications, and is not exposed to the internet. The Caching service supports a hot-reload scenario in which a client service requests all available service data.


A precondition to provide for High Availability of all components within Zowe is the requirement for these components to be either stateless, or for the resources of the service to be offloaded to a location accessible by all instances of the service. This condition also applies to recently started instances. Some services, however, are not, and cannot be stateless. The Caching Service is designed for these types of services.

REST APIs make it possible to create, delete, and update key-value pairs in the cache. Other APIs read a specific key-value pair or all key-value pairs in the cache.

Information from cached APIs is stored as a JSON in the following format:

{  “key”: “keyValue”,   “value”: “valueValue”}

Storage methods#

The Caching Service supports the following storage solutions, which provide the option to add custom implementation.


VSAM can be used to organize records into four types of data sets: key-sequenced, entry-sequenced, linear, or relative record. Use VSAM as the storage solution for production. VSAM is used primarily for applications and is not used for source programs, JCL, or executable modules. ISPF cannot be used to display or edit VSAM files.

For more information about the VSAM storage access method, see Using VSAM as a storage solution through the Caching service.


Redis is a common storage solution that runs outside of the z/OS platform. It can store data structures in key-value pairs, has high-availability support, and is highly performant.

For more information about the Redis storage access method, see Using Redis as a storage solution through the Caching service.


TODO (add in memory procedure) The InMemory storage method is a method suitable for testing and integration verification. Be sure not to use InMemory storage in production. The key/value pairs are stored only in the memory of a single instance of the service. As such, the key/value pairs do not persist.

How to start the service#

By default, the Caching service starts along with the other Zowe components. To prevent the Caching service from starting, set the following parameter to false:


This parameter is defined in the ansible playbooks.

When this parameter is set to false, the parameter appends to the instance.env configuration file, which is used at Zowe start time.

Methods to use the Caching service API#

To apply a method to the Caching service, use the following API path:


Use the following methods with the Caching Service API:

  • POST /cache

    Creates a new key in the Cache

  • GET /cache

    Returns all key/value pairs for specific service

  • PUT /cache/{key}

    Updates the existing value for the given key

  • GET /cache/{key}

    Returns the existing value for the given key

  • DELETE /cache/{key}

    Deletes a key/value pair

Configuration properties#

The Caching Service uses the standard application.yml structure for configuration. The service is built on top of the Spring enabler. As such, it dynamically registers to the API Mediation Layer. The service appears in the API Catalog under the tile, "Zowe Applications".


    This property limits the size of the Caching Service. In the VSAM and InMemory implementations, this property represents the number of records stored before the eviction strategy is initiated. The default value is 100.

    Note: Different implementations may implement this property differently.


    This parameter specifies service behavior when the limit of records is reached. The default value is Reject.


    • reject

      rejects the new item with the HTTP status code 507 when the service reaches the configured maximum number

    • removeOldest

      removes the oldest item in the cache when the service reaches the configured maximum number



Direct calls#

Caching service requires TLS mutual authentication. This verifies authenticity of client. Calls without valid client certificate generate 403 response code: Forbidden. This requirement is disabled when VERIFY_CERTIFICATES=false in zowe-certificates.env configuration file.

Call must have a header X-Certificate-DistinguishedName containing information about certificate's distinguished name. This header is added by API Gateway. It needs to be added manually for direct call. Calls without this header produce 401 response code: Unauthorized.

Routed calls through API Gateway#

Caching service registers with the following authentication scheme to Discovery service:

apiml.service.authentication.scheme: x509apiml.service.authentication.headers: X-Certificate-Public,X-Certificate-DistinguishedName,X-Certificate-CommonName

which makes Gateway to attempt mutual authentication with Client and if succesfull, propagate the Client's certificate information to X-Certificate- headers. With this scheme, Gateway will use it's server/client certificate for the routed call to caching service.