Platform Configuration

Each instance of the VOLTTRON platform includes a config file which is used to configure the platform instance on startup. This file is kept in VOLTTRON_HOME and is created using the volttron-cfg (vcfg) command, or will be created with default values on start up of the platform otherwise.

Following is helpful information about the config file and the vcfg command.


By default, the VOLTTRON project bases its files out of VOLTTRON_HOME which defaults to ~/.volttron. This directory features directories and files used by the platform for important operation and management tasks as well as containing packaged agents and their individual runtime environments (including data directories, identity files, etc.)

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/agents - contains the agents installed on the platform

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/auth.json - file containing authentication and authorization rules for agents connecting to the VOLTTRON instance.

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/certificates - contains the certificates for use with the Licensed VOLTTRON code.

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/configuration_store - agent configuration store files are stored in this directory. Each agent may have a file here in which JSON representations of their stored configuration files are stored.

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/run - contains files create by the platform during execution. The main ones are the ZMQ files created for publish and subscribe functionality.

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/ssh - keys used by agent mobility in the Licensed VOLTTRON code

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/config - Default location to place a config file to override any platform settings.

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/packaged - agent packages created with volttron-pkg are created in this directory

  • $VOLTTRON_HOME/VOLTTRON_PID - File containing the Unix process ID for the VOLTTRON platform - used for tracking platform status.

VOLTTRON Config File

The config file in VOLTTRON_HOME is the config file used by the platform. This configuration file specifies the behavior of the platform at runtime, including which message bus it uses, the name of the platform instance, and the address bound to by VIP. The VOLTTRON Config wizard (explained below) can be used to configure an instance for the first time. The user may run the wizard again or edit the config file directly as necessary for operations. The following is a simple example config for a multi-platform deployment:

message-bus = zmq
vip-address = tcp://
bind-web-address = <web service bind address>
web-ssl-cert = <VOLTTRON_HOME>/certificates/certs/platform_web-server.crt
web-ssl-key = <VOLTTRON_HOME>/certificates/private/platform_web-server.pem
instance-name = volttron1
volttron-central-address = <VC address>

The example consists of the following entries:

  • message-bus - message bus being used for this instance (rmq/zmq)

  • vip-address - address bound to by VIP for message bus communication

  • bind-web-address - Optional, needed if platform has to support web feature. Represents address bound to by the platform web service for handling HTTP(s) requests. Typical address would be https://<hostname>:8443

  • web-ssl-cert - Optional, needed if platform has to support web feature. Represents path to the certificate for the instance’s web service

  • web-ssl-key - Optional, needed if platform has to support web feature. Represents secret key or path to secret key file used by web service authenticate requests

  • instance-name - name of this VOLTTRON platform instance, should be unique for the deployment

  • volttron-central-address - Optional, needed if instance is running Volttron Central. Represents web address of VOLTTRON Central agent managing this platform instance. Typical address would be https://<hostname>:8443


The volttron-cfg or vcfg command allows for an easy configuration of the VOLTTRON environment. The command includes the ability to set up the platform configuration, an instance of the platform historian, VOLTTRON Central UI, and VOLTTRON Central Platform agent.

Running vcfg will create a config file in VOLTTRON_HOME which will be populated according to the answers to prompts. This process should be repeated for each platform instance, and can be re-run to reconfigure a platform instance.


To create a simple instance of VOLTTRON, leave the default response, or select yes (y) if prompted for a yes or no response [Y/N]. You must choose a username and password for the VOLTTRON Central admin account if selected.

A set of example responses are included here (username is user, localhost is volttron-pc):

(volttron) user@volttron-pc:~/volttron$ vcfg

Your VOLTTRON_HOME currently set to: /home/user/.volttron

Is this the volttron you are attempting to setup? [Y]:
What type of message bus (rmq/zmq)? [zmq]:
What is the vip address? [tcp://]:
What is the port for the vip address? [22916]:
Is this instance web enabled? [N]: y
What is the protocol for this instance? [https]:
Web address set to: https://volttron-pc
What is the port for this instance? [8443]:
Would you like to generate a new web certificate? [Y]:
WARNING! CA certificate does not exist.
Create new root CA? [Y]:

Please enter the following details for web server certificate:
    Country: [US]:
    State: WA
    Location: Richland
    Organization: PNNL
    Organization Unit: VOLTTRON
Created CA cert
Creating new web server certificate.
Is this an instance of volttron central? [N]: y
Configuring /home/user/volttron/services/core/VolttronCentral.
Installing volttron central.
['volttron', '-vv', '-l', '/home/user/.volttron/volttron.cfg.log']
Should the agent autostart? [N]: y
VC admin and password are set up using the admin web interface.
After starting VOLTTRON, please go to https://volttron-pc:8443/admin/login.html to complete the setup.
Will this instance be controlled by volttron central? [Y]:
Configuring /home/user/volttron/services/core/VolttronCentralPlatform.
What is the name of this instance? [volttron1]:
Volttron central address set to https://volttron-pc:8443
['volttron', '-vv', '-l', '/home/user/.volttron/volttron.cfg.log']
Should the agent autostart? [N]: y
Would you like to install a platform historian? [N]: y
Configuring /home/user/volttron/services/core/SQLHistorian.
['volttron', '-vv', '-l', '/home/user/.volttron/volttron.cfg.log']
Should the agent autostart? [N]: y
Would you like to install a platform driver? [N]: y
Configuring /home/user/volttron/services/core/PlatformDriverAgent.
['volttron', '-vv', '-l', '/home/user/.volttron/volttron.cfg.log']
Would you like to**install a fake device on the platform driver? [N]: y
Should the agent autostart? [N]: y
Would you like to install a listener agent? [N]: y
Configuring examples/ListenerAgent.
['volttron', '-vv', '-l', '/home/user/.volttron/volttron.cfg.log']
Should the agent autostart? [N]: y
Finished configuration!

You can now start the volttron instance.

If you need to change the instance configuration you can edit
the config file is at /home/user/.volttron/config

Once this is finished, run VOLTTRON and test the new configuration.

Optional Arguments

  • -v, –verbose - Enables verbose output in standard-output (PIP output, etc.)

  • –vhome VHOME - Provide a path to set VOLTTRON_HOME for this instance

  • –instance-name INSTANCE_NAME - Provide a name for this instance. Required for running secure agents mode

  • –list-agents - Display a list of configurable agents (Listener, Platform Driver, Platform Historian, VOLTTRON Central, VOLTTRON Central Platform)

  • –agent AGENT [AGENT …] - Configure listed agents

  • –agent-isolation-mode - Require that agents run as their own Unix users (this requires running scripts/ as sudo)

RabbitMQ Arguments

vcfg command to configure a single RabbitMQ instance of VOLTTRON.


vcfg rabbitmq single [--config Optional path to rabbitmq config file]``

vcfg command to configure a federation instance of RabbitMQ VOLTTRON.


vcfg rabbitmq federation [--config Optional path to rabbitmq federation config file] [--max-retries Optional maximum CSR retry attempt]``

vcfg command to create shovel to send messages from one RabbitMQ instance of VOLTTRON to another.


vcfg rabbitmq shovel [--config Optional path to shovel config file] [--max-retries Optional maximum CSR retry attempt]``