A packet I/O architecture for shell script-based packet processing

Yohei Kuga, Takeshi Matsuya, Hiroaki Hazeyama, Kenjiro Cho, Rodney Van Meter, Osamu Nakamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


We propose a new scripting model for rapid and easier development of packet processing using shell scripts. In this paper we present EtherPIPE, a character network I/O device, that allows the programmer to access network traffic data as a file through UNIX commands. By setting a UNIX pipe ¿|¿ from or to EtherPIPE's output or input with UNIX commands, packets can be easily processed, executing functions such as packet filtering, packet capturing, generating arbitrary packets, and rewriting header information. In order to prove the utilities of our model, we have developed FPGA-based EtherPIPE adapter using a commodity FPGA card and a character device driver featuring new offloading functions. With our prototype implementation, packet scripting works at 1Gbps wire-speed, receiving packets with precise hardware timestamps. This paper argues for use cases of the EtherPIPE, and discusses enhanced formats of character devices for easier network scripting.)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalChina Communications
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Feb


  • Ethernet
  • Shell script
  • Software-Defined Networking
  • device driver
  • network I/O
  • network adapter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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