Example: bridging Ethernet segments using tinc under Linux
Normally, in the default router mode, tinc will only tunnel IPv4 and IPv6 unicast packets. However, since 1.0pre5 there is an option to let the tinc daemon act as a switch or a hub (using the Mode configuration variable). This mode is necessary for tinc to pass non-IP based protocols (NetBEUI, AppleTalk, IPX, etcetera), and to allow broadcast-based functionality in some applications (Windows ‘Network Neighborhood’ without a WINS server, among others) to be usable on a VPN created with tinc.
In switch and hub mode, broadcast packets are broadcast to other daemons and (in switch mode) MAC addresses are dynamically learned from other tinc daemons in order to route packets. With these mode tinc can be used to act as a bridge between two or more Ethernet segments.
Bridging allows all nodes in the VPN to share the same subnet. However, if this is the only reason for bridging, and you do not need to tunnel broadcast or non-IP packets, you can alternatively use proxy ARP instead of bridging.
The network setup is as follows:
- Internal network, on both sides, is 192.168.0.0/16
- The host’s own IP address on the internal network is 192.168.10.20
The gateway of each segment has an external interface, eth0, and an internal interface eth1. Furthermore a bridge interface will be created with name “bridge”, and the internal interface will be made a slave of this bridge. The virtual network interface used by tinc will also be a slave. Configuration of the kernel In addition to the standard kernel configuration described in the Configuring the kernel section of the manual, a bridge device needs to be added to your kernel configuration.
To add the bridge device to the Linux 2.4.0 and higher kernels, select the option under ‘Networking options’ called 802.1d Ethernet Bridging. You may either compile this option as a module or build it into the kernel. Configuration of the interfaces Switch and hub modes require that both sides of a tinc VPN be contained within the same subnet (in this example, the subnet is 192.168.0.0/16). This is no different from the configuration that would be required if tinc was replaced with an actual switch or hub.
host# brctl addbr bridge host# ifconfig bridge 192.168.10.20 netmask 255.255.0.0 host# ifconfig eth1 0.0.0.0 host# brctl addif bridge eth1 host# ifconfig eth1 up After starting tinc: host# brctl show bridge name bridge id STP enabled interfaces bridge 8000.005004003002 yes eth1 vpn host# ifconfig eth0 Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:20:30:40:50:60 inet addr:220.127.116.11 Bcast:18.104.22.168 Mask:255.255.255.0 UP BROADCAST RUNNING MTU:1500 Metric:1 ... eth1 Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:11:22:33:44:55 UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST MTU:1500 Metric:1 ... lo Link encap:Local Loopback inet addr:127.0.0.1 Mask:255.0.0.0 UP LOOPBACK RUNNING MTU:3856 Metric:1 ... bridge Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:11:22:33:44:55 inet addr:192.168.10.20 Bcast:192.168.255.255 Mask:255.255.0.0 UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST MTU:1500 Metric:1 vpn Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:11:22:33:44:55 UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST MTU:1500 Metric:1 ... host# route Kernel IP routing table Destination Gateway Genmask Flags Metric Ref Use Iface 22.214.171.124 * 255.255.255.0 U 0 0 0 eth0 192.168.0.0 * 255.255.0.0 U 0 0 0 bridge default 126.96.36.199 0.0.0.0 UG 0 0 0 eth0
Configuration of tinc
Note that switch and hub mode do not utilize the Subnet variable in the host files. Instead, any packet received by the bridge interface will be passed to the TUN/TAP device for processing. If your tinc instance is running in hub mode, all packets are forwarded to the remote tinc instance. In switch mode, tinc maintains an ARP cache to determine whether any received packet should be forwarded to the remote tinc instance.
host# cat /etc/tinc/vpn/tinc.conf Name = segment1 Mode = switch ConnectTo = segment2 host# cat /etc/tinc/vpn/tinc-up #!/bin/sh ifconfig $INTERFACE 0.0.0.0 brctl addif bridge $INTERFACE ifconfig $INTERFACE up host# ls /etc/tinc/vpn/hosts segment1 segment2 ... host# cat /etc/tinc/vpn/hosts/segment1 Address = 188.8.131.52 -----BEGIN RSA PUBLIC KEY----- ... -----END RSA PUBLIC KEY----- host# cat /etc/tinc/vpn/hosts/segment2 Address = 184.108.40.206 -----BEGIN RSA PUBLIC KEY----- ... -----END RSA PUBLIC KEY-----
If the Ethernet interface added to the bridge was used for the default route, you will need to re-add the default route.
If you want to be able to filter packets on your bridge interface, you will need to a kernel with ebtables support. More information For more information on Linux bridging, see the bridge-utils homepage.