Brocade Vyatta 5400 Virtual Router on vSphere

By | April 7, 2014



As Software Defined Networking grows in popularity and adoption networking companies are branching out from their traditional hardware platforms by offering virtual appliances and software based management tools to address this market. Brocade’s Q4 2012 acquisition of Vyatta allowed the storage networking vendor to come to market with their virtual appliance for IP services, the Vyatta 5400 vRouter.

Vyatta’s history of creating solutions for routing and IP security services on the Debian OS gives Brocade the solution it needs to complete against Cisco’s Cloud Services Router 1000V ,and less directly, with VMware’s vCloud Networking and Security and Junpier’s Contrail. Currently only the 5400 model is available, although Brocade plans to release a 5600 model later this year.

The Advantages of Debian

The fact that the Vyatta 5400 runs a specialized Linux distribution based on Debian allows for some interesting options. From a vSphere perspective it is just a Linux guest. It runs VMware tools and can be deployed easily via template. Its configuration can also be manged with tools like SaltStack, Puppet and Chef without the use of a proxy agent.

These attributes make it a great candidate for deployment via VMware vCloud Automation Center. While this can be done with other SDN and virtual network appliances, the ease of which this can be done with the 5400 make it an attractive offering. Not to mention the plethora of services this appliance can provide.

The 5400 is available as a 60 day trail download on Brocade’s website. As you can see below, the installation is straightforward and not complicated. If you are in the market for a virtual router I suggest you give it a try.

How to Install the Vyatta 5400

1. Download the Brocade Vyatta 5400 ISO from the Brocade website (requires registration).

2. Upload the ISO to a DataStore.

3. Create a Debian GNU/Linux 6 64-bit Virtual Machine in vCenter with the following settings and attach the ISO:


4. Power on the Virtual Machine.

5. Open the Console.


6. Log into the Console with user: “vyatta” and password: “vyatta”.


7. Enter the command install image.

brov004 8. Type Yes to continue. brov005 9.  Select Auto Partition. brov006 10. Select the drive sda. brov007 11. Select Yes to start the partitioning. brov008 12. Type the maximum drive size, in this example 4294. brov009 13. Name the Router. brov010 14. Copy /config/config.boot to sda. brov011 15. Enter a password for the vyatta account. brov012 16. Select the drive for GRUB, sda in this example. brov013 17. Once GRUB is installed the setup is complete. Shutdown the Virtual Machine with poweroff. Disconnect the ISO image and start the Virtual Machine. brov014 18. Login to the router with vyatta account. brov016 19. Run show version and verify that the “Boot via:” is set to “image”. brov017 20. Enter Configuration mode.



21. Set the ip address of the eth0 interface.

set interfaces ethernet eth0 address x.x.x.x/xx.


22.Enable SSH.

set service ssh


23. Commit the changes.



24. Exit Configuration mode.



25. Verify the changes.

show configuration


26. Exit the console and reconnect via ssh. Continue to configure the Router as needed.

Documentation of the Vyatta 5400 can be found here.

4 thoughts on “Brocade Vyatta 5400 Virtual Router on vSphere

  1. Timotist

    “The fact that the Vyatta 5400 runs on FreeBSD”
    Are you sure about this…?

  2. Pingback: Setting up Vyatta Router in your laptop | networkfuel

  3. Pingback: #vBrownBag Follow-Up Virtual Network Lab Setup with Byron Schaller (@byronschaller)

  4. Donovan

    alternatively you can install VyOS (former Vyatta) absolutely with no time limit.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *