A good start to see what RouteFlow is about is our project at a glance description below and the Documentation
page, where you can find the installation guide, presentations, and publications.
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Project at a Glance:RouteFlow, is an open source project to provide virtualized IP routing services over OpenFlow enabled hardware.
RouteFlow is composed by an OpenFlow Controller application, an independent RouteFlow Server, and a virtual network environment that reproduces the connectivity of a physical infrastructure and runs IP routing engines (e.g. Quagga). The routing engines generate the forwarding information base (FIB) into the Linux IP tables according to the routing protocols configured (e.g., OSPF, BGP). In turn, the Linux IP and ARP tables are collected by RouteFlow Slave processes and then translated into OpenFlow tuples that are finally installed in the associated OpenFlow-enabled devices in the forwarding plane.
RouteFlow is the evolution of our early work on QuagFlow -- Partnering Quagga with OpenFlow
and works transparent to the specific routing engine (e.g., Quagga, XORP, BIRD) as long as it is based on the Linux networking stack.
The main components of the RouteFlow solution are:
- RouteFlow Client (RF-Client) // formerly RF-Slave (RF-S)
- RouteFlow Server (RF-Server)
- RouteFlow Proxy (RF-Proxy) // formlery RF-Controller (RF-C) application
The interaction between the components is defined by a set of RouteFlow protocol messages.
Additional third party components required / supported include:
- OpenFlow controller: NOX, POX, Floodlight, Ryu
- Quagga routing engine, XORP
- Open vSwitch (OVS)
- OpenFlow-enabled switches: Software-based (e.g., Mininet, OVS) or hardware-based (e.g., NetFPGA)
Project Objectives The main goal of RouteFlow is to develop an open-source framework for virtual IP routing solutions over commodity hardware implementing the OpenFlow API.
RouteFlow aims at a commodity routing architecture that combines the line-rate performance of commercial hardware with the flexibility of open source routing stacks (remotely) running on general purpose computers. As an outcome of this point in the design space of routing solutions, we expect:
- Migration path from legacy IP deployments to purely SDN/OpenFlow networks
- Open-Source framework to support the different flavours of network virtualization
(e.g., logical routers, router aggregation / multiplexation).
- IP Routing-as-a-Service models of networking
- Simplified intra- and inter-domain routing interoperable with legacy equipments.