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OVSDB Northbound is deprecated since Lithium.

Please do not using in newer release of OpenDaylight. For any questions, please contact ovsdb mailing list. Also, refer to OVSDB postman collections that provides useful action you can perform through the Southbound REST APIs.


The OVSDB database is exposed through a northbound REST interface. Through this interface you can query the database, get the schemas, get data from the various tables and add data to the tables. This page covers using the V3 version of the northbound interface.

Karaf Feature

Install the following feature to use the northbound:

feature:install odl-ovsdb-northbound

Using the Northbound

Using the northbound is as simple as creating a properly formatted REST request. Examples using Postman and curl are shown below.

Notice that the port used in Lithium is 8282. Helium and it's service releases still use the 8080 port.

The APIs for the V3 Northbound can be found here: OVSDB V3 Northbound

Postman REST Client

Postman is easy to use to create and send REST calls that exercise the API. There are pre-made collections available in the OVSDB git repository in resources/commons/OVSDB_Northbound_v3_APIs.json.postman_collection. Import the collection into the Postman application and REST away. You will see text of the form "{{node}}" in the requests. These are environment variables. Select the "Manage environments" link at the top of the Postman client and create an environment. Add the environment variables such as node or Open_vSwitch_uuid and add values.

In most cases you will need to execute some of the northbound REST APIs to retrieve the necessary data to set the values. For instance, to get the "{{node}}" you would need to execute the "GET all nodes" REST API which will return the list of nodes. Then copy that value into the node environment variable.


curl is similar to Postman but uses the cli instead. Notice the "$node" value used for variables instead of the form used by Postman.

Below are the steps to add a bridge:

1. Get all nodes:

curl -v -u admin:admin
export node="OVS%7C192.168.120.31:52540"

Notice the %7C in the export command above. This is needed to add the | character, otherwise the curl command sees the | as a pipe. The GET request actually returns OVS| as the node value.

2. Get the uuid for the Open_vSwitch row. Recall that the ovs-vswitchd.conf.db.5.pdf OVSDB schema requires the Open_vSwitch table bridges row to include a reference to the Bridge table uuid row for the newly created bridge. The first line returned in the below request is the uuid.

curl -v -u admin:admin -H "Content-Type: application/json" -H "Accept: application/json" \$node/database/

export Open_vSwitch_uuid="bf3e1682-70a3-4dcb-b9c9-09c8c19e0616"

3. Create the bridge:

curl -X POST -v -u admin:admin -H "Content-Type: application/json" -H "Accept: application/json" \$node/database/Open_vSwitch/table/Bridge/row \
-d '{"parent_uuid":"'$Open_vSwitch_uuid'", "row":{ "Bridge":{ "name":"brtest", "datapath_type":"OPENFLOW" } } }'

JSON Content Examples

Below are examples of the JSON data to be included in the Postman or curl commands. Notice that the first example is what was used in the curl example above. The below examples are just pretty-printed for better readability. Refer to the Postman collections listed above to see more examples.

Create Bridge


Create Bridge with Port, Interface and QoS

          "type": "linux-htb",