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Intro to OpenFlow Tutorial


This is a simple OpenFlow tutorial that will guide you through the writing of simple OpenFlow controllers to showcase some of the OpenFlow capabilities. We are going to write three different controllers:

  1. Write a controller that will duplicate all the traffic of the OpenFlow switch out a specific port
  2. TCP Port Forward controller. Divert all traffic destined to host A on TCP port X to TCP port Y
  3. Proxy Controller. Write a controller that will divert all traffic destined to host A, TCP port X to host B, TCP port Y

In this tutorial we have a choice of using an OpenFlow Software Switch, Open vSwitch (OVS), or using an OpenFlow-Capable Hardware Switch. The general topology is as pictured below. In general, the controller just needs to have a public IP address, so that it can exchange messages with the OpenFlow switch. The controller for the switch can run anywhere in the Internet. For this tutorial we are going to use a POX based controller, this is just an example of many controllers.


  • A GENI account, if you don't have one sign up!
  • Familiarity with how to reserve GENI resources with any of the GENI Tools (GENI Experimenter Portal, Omni, Flack). If you don't know you can take any of the tutorials:
    • Reserving resources using Flack tutorial
    • Reserving resources using Omni tutorial
  • Familiarity with logging in to GENI compute resources.
  • Basic understanding of OpenFlow. If you are doing this tutorial at home, flip through the tutorial's slides
  • Familiarity with the Unix Command line
  • Familiarity with the python programming language. We are going to use the POX controller, which is just one example of many controllers, and POX is written in python.


Where to get help:

  • If you need help with GENI, email
  • If you have questions about OpenFlow, OVS, Pox you can subscribe to openflow-discuss or any of the other mailing lists listed.


Tutorial Instructions


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