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Short Description
Felix in a Docker container
Full Description

Project Calico

Project Calico provides

  • A simple, pure layer 3 networking approach with no overlays for networking
    "workloads" such as VMs and containers.
  • A distributed firewall implementing rich and flexible network policy,
    imposed at ingress/egress to each workload.

For more information see the Project Calico website.

This repository contains the source code for Project Calico's per-host
daemon, Felix.

How do I get started with Project Calico?

Calico can be used with a range of orchestrators:

Technical documentation is at For
information about contributing to Calico itself, see the section titled
'Contributing' below.

How can I get support for Project Calico?

The best place to ask a question or get help from the community is the
calico-users #slack. We also have
an IRC channel.

In addition, the company behind Project Calico,
Tigera, Inc. offers commercial support.

Who is behind Project Calico?

Tigera, Inc. is the company behind Project Calico
and is responsible for the ongoing management of the project. However, it
is open to any members of the community – individuals or organizations –
to get involved and contribute code.

Please contact us if you are
interested in getting involved and contributing to the project.


Thanks for thinking about contributing to Project Calico! The success of an
open source project is entirely down to the efforts of its contributors, so we
do genuinely want to thank you for even thinking of contributing.

Before you do so, you should check out our contributing guidelines in the file, to make sure it's as easy as possible for us to accept
your contribution.

How do I hack on Felix?

We recommend using a Python virtualenv to isolate your dev environment.
We typically develop on Ubuntu 14.04 (if you're using a later version,
make sure you develop with python2.7). On Ubuntu, to install the dependencies,
create a virtualenv and install Calico into it:

apt-get install git libffi-dev libyajl2 python-dev python-pip
pip install coverage tox virtualenv
virtualenv env
source env/bin/activate
pip install -e .

To run specific unit tests, use nosetests; for example:

nosetests calico.felix.test.test_selectors

To deactivate the virtualenv:


To run the unit tests (from outside a virtualenv), run:

./ --develop

To run felix with log output to screen, first become root (using,
for example sudo -i), then:

cd <path to calico dir>
source env/bin/activate

Note: Felix must be run as root because it needs to moanipulate the
kernel routing table and firewall rules.

How do I build/run Felix


Felix can be run inside Docker. See the script for details on building and running it.

Stand-alone bundle

The script uses PyInstaller
to package Felix as a stand-alone bundle containing a Python distribution along
with Felix's Python dependencies.

To create a bundle

  • install Docker on a Linux system (we haven't tested
    the build on Mac)
  • run ./

The bundle will be output to dist/calico-felix.tgz.

Running the bundle requires

  • libc version 2.12 or newer
  • Linux kernel 2.6.32 or higher (note: to support containers running on the
    host, kernel 3.10+ is required)
  • iptables, ipset and conntrack (typically from the conntrack-tools
    package) to be available.

Note: the bundle itself doesn't require Docker.

To use the bundle,

  • install the pre-requisites above
  • unpack calico-felix.tgz on your target host (/opt/calico-felix would be
    a good place) and create a start-up script (for example, a systemd unit file
    or an upstart script) that runs the calico-felix binary found in the
    unpacked directory. Your start-up script should be set to restart Felix on
    exit because Felix simetimes needs to restart to pick up configuration

Debs and RPMs

The Calico team build debs and RPMs for releases of Calico but right now the
processes involve our build server. Please get in touch if you need to build
your own packages.

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