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[mininet-discuss] Mininet - Make host act as a switch

Bob Lantz rlantz at
Thu May 28 19:47:42 PDT 2015

0. If you’re running quagga, you don’t need or want OVS - you just need IP forwarding enabled.
1. *You don’t need a private dir* - you can simply pass a config file to quagga; we’ve done this for years.
2. However, Mininet supports private directories (e.g. privateDirs=[‘/some/dir’]).
3. If you look at LinuxRouter (in examples/), it shows how you can just turn on IP forwarding to get a simple router.
4. In the future, we’ll probably just add a QuaggaRouter you can use.

> On May 28, 2015, at 5:29 PM, Santiago Vidal <svidal91 at> wrote:
> Hi Bob, thanks for responding.
> Basically I need to emulate a topology where each switch also runs Quagga. To do this, each switch needs to have its own configuration directory, a feature that Mininet does not support (at least I think so).
> To accomplish this, I'm using an extension called MinineXt, but it only allows hosts to have their own configuration directory.
> That's were my question comes from. Since I cannot run Quagga on a switch (or at least MinineXt can't), I'll try the opposite approach: make a host act as a switch.
> Thank you in advance. Santiago.
> Subject: Re: [mininet-discuss] Mininet - Make host act as a switch
> From: rlantz at
> Date: Thu, 28 May 2015 17:16:13 -0700
> CC: mininet-discuss at
> To: svidal91 at
> Why are you trying to replicate the functionality of the OVSSwitch class? Why not simply use OVSSwitch?
> On May 28, 2015, at 4:58 PM, Santiago Vidal <svidal91 at <mailto:svidal91 at>> wrote:
> I need some help with Mininet. I know it may seem odd to try to do this, but trust me it is necessary given my circumstances. I need to start mininet with a host, and then, "manually", set that host up as an OpenFlow Switch.
> What I have so far is this: I am setting up 5 hosts, of which 1 is "the switching host". The other 4 hosts are only connected to this special host. In order to make this "a switching host" I'm executing the following commands in the start script:
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl add-br {NAME}')
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl -- set bridge {NAME} protocols=OpenFlow13')
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl set-controller {NAME} tcp:')
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl add-port {NAME} {NAME}-eth0')
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl add-port {NAME} {NAME}-eth1')
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl add-port {NAME} {NAME}-eth2')
> os.system('sudo ovs-vsctl add-port {NAME} {NAME}-eth3')
> I have a controller listening in port 6633 (which works fine in regular scenarios).
> The behaviour I am observing is that when I start the topology, the switch and the controller have a handshake session correctly, but when I try to ping from one host to the other, it makes an ARP request, as it should, but the switch doesn't do anything so the ARP request keeps hanging there.
> I know there has to be some sort of extra configuration that I am not doing but I can't seem to find anywhere what that is.
> Am I missing some command to link that bridge to the host? How does Mininet create a switch? Maybe by knowing that I can try to do the same with my host.
> Thanks in advance. Santiago.
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