Varnish Broadcaster


Installing the Varnish-Broadcaster

In order to install Varnish-Broadcaster on either Debian/Ubuntu or Redhat Enterprise, access to Varnish Plus is required. Please get in touch via for more information on Varnish Plus.

Debian / Ubuntu install

If you are installing on Debian or Ubuntu, use the prebuilt packages:

Add the Varnish Plus repository for Varnish-Broadcaster

Update and install:

$ apt-get update
$ apt-get install varnish-broadcaster

Redhat Enterprise Linux install

Currently only RPMs for RHEL6 and RHEL7 and compatible derivatives are available.

Add the Varnish-Broadcaster yum repository as per Varnish Plus instruction.


$ yum update
$ yum install varnish-broadcaster

Start the broadcaster service

The broadcaster will start with its default configuration file pointing to /etc/varnish/nodes.conf and the log level set to INFO.

$ service broadcaster start

If succesfully started, the broadcaster will expose two ports:

  • 8088: Port used for receiving invalidation requests.
  • 8089: Port used for internal management requests.

See below section for other available options.


Start the broadcaster with any of the below options. All of them have been preconfigured with default values, except the cfg option which points to the file containing the nodes to broadcast against.

The broadcaster does not have a specific requirement of running in its own VM, however, if running on the same node with Varnish and Hitch it is worth taking into account the broadcaster’s https configuration in order to avoid port collision with Hitch.

Option About Default Required
port The port under which the broadcaster is exposed. 8088
mgmt-port Listening port for the broadcaster’s management. 8089
cfg Path to a file containing configured nodes. X
a Enable async mode. If true, any incoming request will return imediatelly with a X-Job-Id header. false
ttl The ttl of a finished invalidation request. When done, every invalidation request is kept in memory for the specified amount of time. This due to status purposes only. 10 minutes
log Set log level. Available options: debug, info, warning, error, quiet. info
https-port Broadcaster https listening port. 8443
crt CRT file used for HTTPS support. For HTTPS
key KEY file used for HTTPS support. For HTTPS

HTTPS support

By default, the broadcaster starts listening on the port, however - if both crt and key options are set, it will automatically switch onto https and listen to the https-port (default: 8443).

Optional headers

  • X-Broadcast-Group: Name of the cluster(s) to broadcast against, if not used - the broadcast will be done against all caches. Multiple group names are white-space separated.

Configuration file

The Broadcaster requires a file which contains the nodes to broadcast against. The format of the file is similar to the ini format.

Below you have a couple of snippets from a valid configuration file.

This configuration has two clusters (Europe/US) each with its own nodes:

# this is a comment 
First =
Second =
Third =

Alpha = http://[1::2]
Beta =

The following configuration has all the nodes available in the local cluster.

alpha =
bravo = [1:2::3]:45
charlie =
delta = http://[1::2]

Note that a combination of the two configurations is not allowed. The following configuration is invalid:

alpha =
bravo = [1:2::3]:45
charlie =
delta = http://[1::2]

Configuration reload

If the broadcaster receives a SIGHUP notification, it will trigger a configuration reload from disk.