RYU Faucet (SDN Controller) on Raspberry Pi

I think I finally have a use for one of my 3 Raspberry Pi computers – an SDN controller.

I have an Allied Telesis switch about to arrive, which I will be using as an SDN device – buzzy and buzzwordy at the same time. I was planning on running Ryu-Faucet as my controller stack on a VM, but I had the genius move of moving my R730 server into another location – thinking the SDN controller should be near to the switch for noob-level troubleshooting (despite that being kind of against the spirit of SDN…) – I went with the nextmost NIX thing I could find – a Raspberry Pi 2 running Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.

So – how to go about doing this from a fresh Ubuntu install? Some garbled notes to follow – but first up – I am not a software developer, I can barely code to save myself – so using things like PyPi are new to me.

First up – an apt-get update / upgrade (I run everything from root for this process)

james@ubuntu:/# sudo su
root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# apt-get update
root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# apt-get upgrade

That gets us up to date. On my home connection with the Raspberry Pi 2 it took about 15 minutes to complete. Next up, installing enough Python tools to install more Python tools.. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS comes with Python 2.7 by default – so that’s a good start.

Now, we grab Pip (more deets here):

root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# wget https://bootstrap.pypa.io/get-pip.py
root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# python get-pip.py

Cool, so that grabs Pip for us. Note: I ran get-pip.py twice, the first time it installed an old version, then it smoothly upgraded it (from version 1.5 to version 7.2!).

With Pip installed, we’re good to go installing Ryu-Faucet.. Except not quite. The instructions here don’t account for the fact that we’re not hardened Python devs (and that we’re running on an ARM CPU not an Intel one – I guess).

Grab some extra tools from apt:
root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# apt-get install python-dev
Now we can run Pip and pull down the file we want to install (ryu-faucet!):

root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# pip install https://pypi.python.org/packages/source/r/ryu-faucet/ryu-faucet-0.28a.tar.gz

Watch the magic occur!

root@ubuntu:/home/ubuntu# pip show ryu-faucet
Metadata-Version: 2.0
Name: ryu-faucet
Version: 0.28a0
Summary: Ryu application to perform Layer 2 switching with VLANs.
Home-page: http://http://openflowsdn.github.io/faucet
Author: Shivaram Mysore, OpenflowSDN.Org
Author-email: faucet-dev@OpenflowSDN.Org
License: Apache License 2.0
Location: /usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages
Requires: ryu, pyyaml

Cool. Next time, we’ll configure the Pi’s single ethernet interface to handle management and SDN controller duties and fling some packets across the data plane.