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Re: [libvirt] Dumping network traffic

On Mon, Jul 23, 2012 at 03:14:15PM -0400, Laine Stump wrote:
> On 07/23/2012 10:26 AM, Hendrik Schwartke wrote:
> > I'm currently working on a feature that dumps the network traffic of a virtual interface over the streaming api of libvirt.
> > The goal is to offer the possiblity to debug network related problems of guests without the need to have access to a shell on the host.
> > E.g. "virsh iface-dumptraffic virbr0 icmp | tcpdump -n -r -" prints all icmp traffic on virbr0 to stdout.
> > The code below is only a proof of concept, but it should be possible to recognize what I have in mind and how I want to implement it.
> >     
> > So I would appreciate any comments on that!
> >
> It's definitely interesting functionality, but putting it in
> netcf_driver.c doesn't seem like the right place, since it doesn't use
> any netcf functionality, and could just as easily be made to work
> without it. On the other hand, since (the way you've implemented it) it
> is related to host interfaces, it kind of makes logical sense for it to
> be named virInterface<something>, and the backend of all those commands
> is currently in netcf_driver.c.
> When I first saw the patch, my initial reaction was that it may be
> better suited to making two separate APIs, virNetworkDumpTraffic(),
> which would have the same functionality you're proposing, but would
> determine the name of the device to dump by looking in the config for
> the named network, and virDomainDumpTraffic() which would dump the
> network traffic for a specific domain (conceptually this should relieve
> the programmer from learning the name of the physical device). However,
> I then realized that:
> 1) in the case of a network, not all networks even have a bridge device
> associated with them - some only have a pool of physical devices, and
> those devices can't even be tapped into anyway (macvtap devices don't
> support iptables, ebtables, or tapping in for tcpdump).

I don't think that's neccessarily a problem. It is perfectly OK to
have only certain configurations supported.

> 2) in the case of a domain, there could be multiple <interface>s, and
> they have no permanent logical name, so the user of this new API would
> still end up needing to grab the XML for the domain and parse out the
> <target dev='xxx'/> for each interface, and that interface name would in
> the end be a name on the host not the guest (so the name of the domain
> would really be irrelevant to this new API), *AND* again any
> type='direct' (macvtap) or type='hostdev' (PCI passthrough) interface
> could not be tapped.

This is no different to the usage scenario for virDomainInterfaceStats,
so I don't think that's an argument against virDomainInterfaceCapture()
In addidition there is the "alias" identifier given to each interface
which can also be used.

> So, I have no good alternative - no solutions here, just maybe fodder
> for more discussion. (hmm, maybe this new functionality could be put in
> a separate .c file that is linked to netcf_driver.c (and would
> theoretically be linked to any other interface driver that needed the
> same implementation of the same functionality).

I say 90% of the functionality should go into a src/util/virnetdevcapture.{c,h}
file. We can then expose this via the virNetwork, virDomain & virInterface
APIs as desired. In fact it could even make sense to expose it via the
virNodeDevice APIs, since I can imagine wanting to be able to capture
traffic without actually configuring a NIC.

You might say there is overlap by having the APIs in all these different
levels, but it is useful from a access control POV. eg, if there is an
API at the virDomainPtr level, we can apply access controls per-guest.

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