MiniNExT is an extension layer that makes it easier to build complex networks in Mininet.
MiniNExT includes building blocks that are used in many experimental networks, including:
- Routing engines (Quagga and BIRD)
- Servers (BIND and Apache)
- Connectivity components (OpenVPN, etc.)
- NAT and Network Management components (DHCP, etc.)
In addition, MiniNExT hosts / containers can provide greater isolation, including:
- PID namespaces - isolates each container's processes, improving application support
- UTS namespaces - each host can have its own hostname, simplifying management
- Improved mount namespaces - easy to provide each host with a custom filesystem
- Log and runtime isolation - each host can have its own /var/log and /run with one line
We also make it easier to express common configurations with:
- Service helpers - makes it easier to run and manage the services in your hosts
- Network helpers - makes it easier to configure loopback interfaces and NAT networks
- Mount management - makes it easier to provide hosts with individual configurations
We hope to upstream some of these extensions (such as support for PID and UTS namespaces, easier mount management, etc.) into mainline Mininet.
MiniNExT was developed by Brandon Schlinker at The University of Southern California in collaboration with Kyriakos Zarifis (USC), Italo Cunha (UFMG), Nick Feamster (GaTech), Ethan Katz-Bassett (USC), and Minlan Yu (USC).
MiniNExT is part of the PEERING project at USC, which combines Transit Portal and MiniNExT. Combined, these tools enable researchers to build realistic AS topologies that can exchange BGP routes and traffic with real ISPs around the world. The PEERING tools played a role in evaluating Software Defined Internet Exchanges by making it possible to build a virtual IXP fabric composed of real ISP peers.
For problems with the code base, please use the GitHub issue tracker. All other queries, please email email@example.com
MiniNExT depends on the Mininet software package, and thus you must have Mininet installed.
You can check if you already have Mininet installed and its version by executing
If Mininet is not installed, you can install it on Debian/Ubuntu by executing:
$ sudo apt-get install mininet
OR, Mininet can be installed from source by following the instructions on the Mininet website
MiniNExT sources are available here. The easiest option is to download a
.tar.gz source archive. Download and extract the archive to a location in your home directory.
You may also prefer to use
clone the MiniNExT repository to make upgrading easier.
MiniNExT depends on a packages that may not be installed by default with Mininet.
To list these dependencies, execute the following in the directoy where you extracted MiniNExT:
$ make deps
These dependencies can be installed on Debian/Ubuntu by executing:
$ sudo apt-get install `make deps`
To install MiniNExT, execute the following in the directoy where you extracted MiniNExT:
$ sudo make install
To uninstall MiniNExT, execute the following in the directoy where you extracted MiniNExT:
$ sudo make uninstall
Note that the
pip package must be installed for this to work.
If you're extending or debugging MiniNExT, you likely do not want to install to the system's Python library.
Instead, you can run the following command to install MiniNExT in developer mode:
$ sudo make develop
This triggers the development mode that is provided by the
setuptools package, which then creates a link instead of performing a complete installation. However, note that the
mxexec and supporting help files are still installed into their respective system paths.
To remove, run:
$ sudo make undevelop
Note: MiniNExT no longer forks Mininet
Previously MiniNExT functionality was built by forking and modifying the original Mininet source code. However, this created conflicts with existing Mininet installations and made it difficult to merge in upstream changes. MiniNExT has been redesigned to extend Mininet, and does not impact default Mininet execution.