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GEC20 Tutorial: Getting Started with GENI

Live Stream Information



This tutorial spans two sessions:

Saturday 2:00pm-3:30pm and 4.00pm-5.30pm

Session Leaders

Sarah Edwards
Vic Thomas
Niky Riga

Agenda / Details

This session is for those with little to no experience running experiments on GENI. Attendees will be introduced to key GENI concepts, will run simple experiments on GENI and learn the basics of debugging their GENI experiments. By the end of this session participants should feel comfortable running their own experiments on GENI.

Part I: Develop a basic understanding of the experiment workflow by doing a simple experiment. Understand the role of the data and control interfaces on each compute node.

Part II: Understand how resources are described and reserved in GENI. Learn how to customize those resources using standard mechanisms. Use multiple tools to act on a slice and reserve resources.

Familiarity with the material presented in this session will be assumed in other tutorials at GEC.


There are no pre-requisites for this tutorial.

Attendees should have done the advance work (getting a GENI account, installing GENI tools, etc).

The following background will be helpful for this tutorial:


In Part I, attendees will run their first complete experiment in GENI.

At the end of Part I, attendees will be able to:

  • Use and understand the following terms:
    • Experimenter
    • Project
    • Slice
    • Aggregate
    • Resource
    • Resource Specification (aka RSpec)
  • Do the complete experiment workflow:
    • understand how to use their GENI Experimenter Portal account to join a project and create a slice
    • know how to draw an experimental topology and reserve resources using a graphical tool (Flack)
    • know how to log into compute resources using ssh and a private key
    • know how to manually load software onto a compute node
    • understand the purpose of the control and data interfaces
    • know how to delete resources

In Part II, attendees will run their second complete experiment in GENI.

At the end of Part II, attendees will be able to:

  • Use and understand the following terms:
    • Resource Specification (aka RSpec)
    • sliver
    • Aggregate Manager API (AM API)
  • Customize the resources they reserve using standard mechanisms:
    • understand that a resource specification (RSpec) is an XML file
    • understand that resources are reserved using the aggregate manager API (AM API)
    • understand how to load a topology using an RSpec
    • have edited an RSpec using a tool (Flack) as well as by hand
    • have reserved and deleted resources using a command line tool (omni)
    • know how to specify the image to load on a compute node
    • know how to have software automatically loaded and run on a compute node
    • have run a simple layer 2 experiment
  • Use multiple tools to act on a slice and reserve resources
    • understand that all tools use common mechanisms to describe resources (RSpecs) and to reserve resources (the AM API)
  • Understand the strengths of different types of GENI racks

Tutorial materials

Part I: A first experiment using GENI

Working with Collaborators

  • Slides: TBD

Break for Lunch

Part II: Understanding the AM API using a simple experiment

  • Instructions: web
  • Slides: TBD

Getting started with your own experiment

  • Advanced Topics
  • Solving Common Issues
  • Getting Help
  • Slides: TBD

Want to do this exercise at home or in the classroom? Complete information for these exercises is available.

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