RE: Vector Packet Processing (VPP) portability on FreeBSD

From: Francois ten Krooden <>
Date: Tue, 21 Sep 2021 09:52:58 UTC

This is just some feedback for those who had an interest in this topic.

After spending quite some time on the VPP to FreeBSD porting effort where we did manage to get VPP working with netmap, and VPP compiling with DPDK; We realised that there are some big issues that we would need to overcome. Some of these efforts are not viable for our small team to accomplish in a reasonable time frame.
The main issues that we have found are:
- Tests proved that netmap would not deliver the desired performance as it is currently implemented within VPP. The main issues here are that for every 256 packets memory seems to be allocated again, also a number of copies occur in the memory which slows down the performance.
- VPP relies on VFIO to map device memory into user space for processing within the application. This code is implemented in DPDK in the Linux implementation but in the FreeBSD implementation in DPDK these functions are stubbed.
- To interface with crypto-offloading hardware such as the QAT card from Intel, or our own card VPP/DPDK also utilize VFIO with the PCI device.
- As far as we have been able to see the VFIO support in FreeBSD is not at the same level as Linux, which would then require additional kernel development which is not possible in the time frame.


Francois ten Krooden
Principal Developer

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