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Fast Network Simulation Setup

Fast Network Simulation Setup (FNSS) is a toolchain allowing network researchers and engineers to simplify the process of setting up a network experiment scenario. It allows users to:

  • Parse a topology from a dataset or a topology generator or generate it according to a number of synthetic models
  • Configure links with capacity, weights, delays and buffer sizes
  • Deploy applications and protocol stacks on nodes
  • Generate traffic matrices
  • Generate event schedules
  • Deploy network and workload configuration to a number of simulators and emulators

FNSS comprises a core library, written in Python, and a set of adapters. This repository contains the core library, which provides all capabilities for generating experiment scenarios and to export them to ns-2, Mininet, Omnet++, Autonetkit and jFed. It can also be used in conjunction with the FNSS Java, C++ API or ns-3 libraries to import topologies, traffic matrices and event schedules in the desired target simulator or emulator. See the repositories fnss-java, fnss-cpp and fnss-ns3 for further information.


The FNSS library comprises a core Python library, which also includes adapters for ns-2, Mininet and Autonetkit and libraries for ns-3 and Java and C++ simulators/emulators. The core Python library is needed for creating and configuring topologies, traffic matrices and event schedules. Such objects can then be used directly if you intend to use a Python simulator. Otherwise, they can be exported to ns-2, Autonetkit and Mininet or saved to XML files which can then be parsed by the ns-3, Java or C++ libraries. For detailed information on how to use each component of the toolchain, please refer to the fnss-java, fnss-cpp or fnss-ns3 repositories. or visit the FNSS website.


The easiest way to install the latest stable version of this library is via pip. First, ensure that you have Python installed on your machine with version (2.7.9+ or 3.4+). Then, from a shell run:

pip install --upgrade fnss

This will automatically pull the latest version and install all dependencies.


Once the package is successfully installed, you can start using FNSS straight away. Look at the documentation and examples for getting started. You can find the documentation online on Read The Docs.

FNSS also provides a mn-fnss which can be used to start Mininet with an FNSS-generated network topology. Open a shell and run the following command to get more information on how to use it.

mn-fnss --help

Development setup

If you wish to develop on FNSS run:

make install

This will download all development requirements and install FNSS in editable mode, which means that any change made to the source code will be immediately available by other libraries in the system without needing reinstallation.

You can run tests with:

make test

and build documentation with:

make doc

It is advisable to use virtualenv to create an isolated environment for working with FNSS before running make install.


If you cite FNSS in your paper, please refer to the following publication:

L. Saino, C. Cocora, G. Pavlou, A Toolchain for Simplifying Network Simulation Setup, in Proceedings of the 6th International ICST Conference on Simulation Tools and Techniques (SIMUTOOLS '13), Cannes, France, March 2013

     author = {Saino, Lorenzo and Cocora, Cosmin and Pavlou, George},
     title = {A Toolchain for Simplifying Network Simulation Setup},
     booktitle = {Proceedings of the 6th International ICST Conference on Simulation Tools and Techniques},
     series = {SIMUTOOLS '13},
     year = {2013},
     location = {Cannes, France},
     numpages = {10},
     publisher = {ICST},
     address = {ICST, Brussels, Belgium, Belgium},

Bug reports

If you wish to report a bug, please open an issue on the GitHub issue page. When reporting an issue, please try to provide a reproducible example of the problem, if possible.


Any contributions to the project (either bug fixes or new features) are very much welcome. To submit your code, please send a pull request on the GitHub project page.

If you wish to contribute please try to follow these guidelines:

  • Write commit messages conforming to Git convention
  • If you are sending a fix to an open issue, feel free to send a pull request directly, but make sure to reference the issue ID that you are fixing in the commit message.
  • Think about writing test cases for your feature or bug fix, if relevant. If you can't, don't worry: send your code anyway.


The FNSS core library is released under the terms of the BSD License. See LICENSE.txt.


Fast creation and configuration of topologies, traffic matrices and event schedules for network experiments





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