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Open vSwitch is a multilayer software switch created to provide an open source, production quality switch platform that supports standard management interfaces and opens the forwarding functions to programmatic extension and control. Open vSwitch is widely used as a virtual switch in Virtual Machines environments such as OpenStack implementation. In this article we will install Open vSwitch on CentOS 8 | RHEL 8.

These are the core features provided by Open vSwitch.

  • Visibility into inter-VM communication via NetFlow, sFlow(R), IPFIX, SPAN, RSPAN, and GRE-tunneled mirrors
  • LACP (IEEE 802.1AX-2008)
  • Standard 802.1Q VLAN model with trunking
  • Multicast snooping
  • IETF Auto-Attach SPBM and rudimentary required LLDP support
  • BFD and 802.1ag link monitoring
  • STP (IEEE 802.1D-1998) and RSTP (IEEE 802.1D-2004)
  • Fine-grained QoS control
  • Support for HFSC qdisc
  • Per VM interface traffic policing
  • NIC bonding with source-MAC load balancing, active backup, and L4 hashing
  • OpenFlow protocol support (including many extensions for virtualization)
  • IPv6 support
  • Multiple tunneling protocols (GRE, VXLAN, STT, and Geneve, with IPsec support)
  • Remote configuration protocol with C and Python bindings
  • Kernel and user-space forwarding engine options
  • Multi-table forwarding pipeline with flow-caching engine
  • Forwarding layer abstraction to ease porting to new software and hardware platforms

Install Open vSwitch on CentOS 8/RHEL 8

We’re going to use OpenStack repository to pull Open vSwitch rpm packages.

Add OpenStack repository to CentOS 8

sudo yum install -y epel-release
sudo yum install -y centos-release-openstack-train

Add OpenStack repository to RHEL 8

For RHEL 8, you can use Red Hat OpenStack 16 repositories if you have active subscriptions:

sudo subscription-manager repos --enable=openstack-16-for-rhel-8-x86_64-rpms
sudo subscription-manager repos --enable=fast-datapath-for-rhel-8-x86_64-rpms
sudo subscription-manager repos --enable=rhel-8-server-optional-rpms

If you don’t have Red Hat OpenStack subscription, use RDO:

sudo subscription-manager repos --enable=rhel-8-server-optional-rpms
sudo sudo yum install

Then install Open vSwitch on CentOS 8 | RHEL 8:

sudo yum install openvswitch libibverbs

Accept installation:

CentOS 8:

CentOS-8 - RabbitMQ 38                                                                                                  234 kB/s |  80 kB     00:00    
CentOS- 8 - OpenStack train                                                                                             3.1 MB/s | 2.0 MB     00:00    
CentOS-8 - Advanced Virtualization                                                                                      330 kB/s |  72 kB     00:00    
CentOS-8 - Ceph Nautilus                                                                                                614 kB/s | 180 kB     00:00    
Dependencies resolved.
 Package                           Architecture                 Version                              Repository                                    Size
 openvswitch                       x86_64                       2.12.0-1.el8                         centos-openstack-train                       2.0 M
Installing dependencies:
 dpdk                              x86_64                       18.11.2-3.el8                        AppStream                                    1.8 M

Transaction Summary
Install  2 Packages

Total download size: 3.8 M
Installed size: 14 M
Is this ok [y/N]: y
Total                                                                                                                   3.3 MB/s | 3.8 MB     00:01     
warning: /var/cache/dnf/centos-openstack-train-ceeb4cd59b18ee21/packages/openvswitch-2.12.0-1.el8.x86_64.rpm: Header V4 RSA/SHA1 Signature, key ID 764429e6: NOKEY
CentOS- 8 - OpenStack train                                                                                             1.0 MB/s | 1.0 kB     00:00    
Importing GPG key 0x764429E6:
 Userid     : "CentOS Cloud SIG ( <[email protected]>"
 Fingerprint: 736A F511 6D9C 40E2 AF6B 074B F9B9 FEE7 7644 29E6
 From       : /etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-CentOS-SIG-Cloud
Is this ok [y/N]: y


Updating Subscription Management repositories.
RDO CentOS-7 - QEMU EV                                                                                                  208 kB/s |  18 kB     00:00    
OpenStack Train Repository                                                                                               23 MB/s | 3.9 MB     00:00    
Dependencies resolved.
 Package                            Architecture     Version                                           Repository                                  Size
 openvswitch                        x86_64           1:2.12.0-1.el7                                    openstack-train                            2.0 M
Installing dependencies:
 compat-openssl10                   x86_64           1:1.0.2o-3.el8                                    rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           1.1 M
 dpdk                               x86_64           18.11.2-3.el8                                     rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           1.8 M
 make                               x86_64           1:4.2.1-10.el8                                    rhel-8-for-x86_64-baseos-rpms              498 k
 python2                            x86_64           2.7.17-1.module+el8.2.0+4561+f4e0d66a             rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           108 k
 python2-libs                       x86_64           2.7.17-1.module+el8.2.0+4561+f4e0d66a             rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           6.0 M
 python2-pip-wheel                  noarch           9.0.3-16.module+el8.2.0+5478+b505947e             rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           1.2 M
 python2-setuptools-wheel           noarch           39.0.1-11.module+el8.1.0+3446+c3d52da3            rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           289 k
Installing weak dependencies:
 python2-pip                        noarch           9.0.3-16.module+el8.2.0+5478+b505947e             rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           1.9 M
 python2-setuptools                 noarch           39.0.1-11.module+el8.1.0+3446+c3d52da3            rhel-8-for-x86_64-appstream-rpms           643 k
Enabling module streams:
 python27                                            2.7                                                                                               

Transaction Summary
Install  10 Packages

Total download size: 15 M
Installed size: 54 M
Is this ok [y/N]: y
                                                                               1.0 MB/s | 1.0 kB     00:00    
Importing GPG key 0x764429E6:
 Userid     : "CentOS Cloud SIG ( <[email protected]>"
 Fingerprint: 736A F511 6D9C 40E2 AF6B 074B F9B9 FEE7 7644 29E6
 From       : /etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-CentOS-SIG-Cloud
Is this ok [y/N]: y

Start and enable openvswitch service:

sudo systemctl enable --now openvswitch

Confirm service status:

$ systemctl status openvswitch
● openvswitch.service - Open vSwitch
   Loaded: loaded (/usr/lib/systemd/system/openvswitch.service; enabled; vendor preset: disabled)
   Active: active (exited) since Fri 2020-06-05 23:24:15 CEST; 24s ago
  Process: 9704 ExecStart=/bin/true (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
 Main PID: 9704 (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)

Jun 05 23:24:15 systemd[1]: Starting Open vSwitch...
Jun 05 23:24:15 systemd[1]: Started Open vSwitch.

Check if ovs-vsctl command is usable.

# ovs-vsctl show
    ovs_version: "2.12.0"

Optionally install os-net-config if you plan on configuring Open vSwitch with it.

sudo yum install os-net-config

Configure and use Open vSwitch

The next article below covers configurations of Open vSwitch bridges and network interfaces for use in your actual virtualization environments such as KVM.

Configuring Open vSwitch on CentOS | RHEL | Fedora

Other articles to checkout:

Run CentOS 8 VM using Vagrant on KVM / VirtualBox / VMWare / Parallels

Install oVirt Guest Agent on CentOS 8 | RHEL 8

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