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This page describes how to install and configure the Cisco Layer 3 (L3) Features plugin for OpenStack Neutron.



Previous to the Juno release, the core Cisco plugin supported both L2 and L3 features. Beginning with the Juno release of OpenStack, the ML2 type driver plugin replaces the core plugin.

The ML2 plugin supports only L2 features. This plugin replaces support for the L3 previously provided by the core plugin. This plugin supports full L3 routing functionality. See

Note: This plugin communicates only with Cisco Nexus 3000, 5000 and 7000 switches.

L3 Functionality

The following L3 functionality is provided by this plugin.


A router is a logical entity that forwards packets across internal subnets and NATs them on external networks through an appropriate external gateway.

A router has an interface for each subnet with which it is associated. By default, the IP address of such interface is the subnet's gateway IP. Also, whenever a router is associated with a subnet, a port for that router interface is added to the subnet's network.

The Cisco family of Nexus switches have some router capabilities. The L3 Cisco Nexus service plugin will be used to configure the Nexus switches with some of these router features.

Switched Virtual Interface

Switched Virtual Interfaces (SVIs) are created for any VLANs for which you want to route traffic. When the Cisco Nexus L3 service plugin is enabled and a router interface is created the XML command snippet to create an SVI interface with the gateway IP address configured is executed. The result Nexus switch configuration will look similar to this example:

interface Vlan100
  ip address

The Nexus switch SVI interface is deleted when the router interface is deleted.

Floating IPs

A floating IP address represent an external IP address that is mapped to an OpenStack Networking port and, optionally, a specific IP address on a private OpenStack Networking network. A floating IP enables access to an instance on a private network from an external network.



To deploy the Cisco Nexus L3 Service Plugin add the class location to the list of L3 services configuration variable, service_plugins. The services_plugins variable can be found in the [DEFAULT] section of the neutron.conf module.


Post Installation

Describe post installation steps, if any.

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