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GENI Desktop Command Line Interface Tool

The GENI Desktop Command line Interface Tool is a simple client side tool written in python that interacts with the GENI Desktop server to provide a user with a subset of operations that can currently be done via the GUI interface. It provides a user with the flexibility to automate GENI Desktop related operations by combining multiple operation into a bash or .bat script and customize them based on their needs. Some of the operations currently supported by the GENI Desktop CLI Tool are:

  • Check status of the slice/slivers
  • Download files from nodes in the Slice
  • Download passive monitoring data collected from nodes in a CSV, PNG and RRD formats.
  • Download a list of slices, list of nodes/links in a slice, or the entire slice topology in a JSON format.
  • Run commands on the node(s) in the slice. (Similar to the Run module in the GUI)
  • Upload file(s) to the node(s) in the slice. (Similar to the File upload module in the GUI)
  • Execute a CLI version of the Experiment Validation Tool available in the GUI.

So to get started please follow the steps below.

  1. Download and Install and Test GENIDesktop CLI Tool.
  2. Generate and Download GDCLI key.
  3. Enable the GDCLI using the GDCLI key.
  4. Using GENIDesktop CLI.

STEP 1. Download and Install and Test GENI Desktop CLI Tool

To Download the GENI Desktop CLI Tool, please log in to the GENI Desktop if you are not already logged in. Click on the setting wheel like icon on the far top-right of the page to launch the settings menu. Click on GDCLI button.

We currently have installers for MAC OS, Windows and Ubuntu/Debian (or any other Debian based Linux OS). If you are using any other OS and have Python 2.7 or greater (note that python 3.0 is not currently supported), you can go ahead and use the Python version of the GDCLI. Otherwise, please download the appropriate installer package for your machine.

Once you have downloaded the correct binary for your OS, follow the install instructions below for your OS.


  1. To install run "sudo dpkg -i gdcli-1.16.deb"


  1. Drag the gdcli-1.16 icon to the Applications icon.
  2. Open a terminal window.
  3. Run the script /Applications/gdcli-1.16/addAliases.command. This script will add aliases for the various GENIDesktop CLI in your ~/.bash_profile or ~/.bash_login or ~/.profile. (The script looks for these files in this order).


  1. Double click the downloaded install file.

Python Script, any other OS

  1. Install Python 2 on your system. This is the normal default install on most machines. You may place the downloaded script in any directory that you want.
  2. If installed correctly you should be able to run the "gdcli version" command
bash:~# gdcli version
GENI Desktop Command Line Interface v1.16

If you do not see this output or run into any error , please ask for help.

STEP 2. Generate and Copy the GDCLI key.

The first time you use the GENIDesktop CLI Tool, you will have to generate a gdcli key which is an authentication token used by the system. From the GDCLI Quick Start Page (accessed via the GDCLI button in the settings menu), click the Manage Sessions/Keys button.

Then select and copy the Session ID key into the clipboard of your windowing system so that it can be pasted in the next step. (Or, if you know what you're doing, you can download the key in a file via the Download Key button.)

STEP 3. Enable the GDCLI using the GDCLI key.

Open a terminal (command prompt if using Windows. On Windows you also need to cd c:\GDCLI .).

Run the command below to authenticate your CLI session. Paste the key copied in STEP 2 in place of <key> in the command below.

 gdcli authkey -k <key>

STEP 4. Using the GENIDesktop CLI

In this exercise we will use the existing slice that we created earlier in this tutorial. We assume that you have "iperf" installed on your nodes from the previous sections of this tutorial. Please note down your slicename and the projectname your slice belongs to. This will be needed in the command line parameters for this exercise. There are numerous operation that can be performed using the CLI, but this example will focus on three things

  • List your nodes
  • Start iperf server on node-0
  • Start iperf client on node-1
  • View the traffic on the link graph after downloading the PNG

We can automate the above steps using a GENI Desktop CLI script. We have created example scripts for Mac/Linux and also for Windows:

Click on the "Download in Original format" link at the bottom of the relevant script page mentioned above to download the script on your laptops.

Go to the download folder and run the relevant custom script

 ./ <Projectname> <slicename>


gdcli_win.bat <Projectname> <slicename>

If the script finishes sucessfully , windows users should see a folder window pop up with the relevant graphs in them. Linux/MAC users should see a folder called "mygraphs" appear on the desktop of their local machine (~/Desktop/mygraphs) which should contain the graph files.

Sample GENIDesktop CLI operations

NOTE: In the example below, we use the slicename demo and project name UKGENI. You will need to replace these with the name of your slice and the name of your project. We also use the node and link names from the topology set up earlier in this tutorial.

  1. ListNodes operation
gdcli listnodes -s demo -r UKGENI

["node-0", "node-1", "GDGN0"]
  1. Run Command operation
#Start Iperf Server in daemon on node-0
bash:~$ gdcli run -s demo -r UKGENI -n "node-0" -c "iperf -s -D> /dev/null 2>&1"
#Start iperf client on node-1

bash:~$ gdcli run -s demo -r UKGENI -n "node-1" -c "iperf -t 30 -c node-0 -b 10000M"
Client connecting to node-0, UDP port 5001
Sending 1470 byte datagrams
UDP buffer size:  208 KByte (default)
[  3] local port 53242 connected with port 5001
[ ID] Interval       Transfer     Bandwidth
[  3]  0.0-30.0 sec  2.68 GBytes   768 Mbits/sec
[  3] Sent 1959326 datagrams

  1. Download graph in PNG Format
# Fetch graphs for the link in the slice.

bash:~$ gdcli getpng -s demo -r UKGENI  -g linkbytes -l link-0 -n node-0 -o ~/Desktop/mygraphs

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Last modified 3 years ago Last modified on 03/17/21 12:36:39

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