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Contributing to onosproject

The ONOS team hopes for and welcomes contributions from the community at large.

To become a contributor, you will first need to sign a CLA. After that, simply follow the process outlined below for submitting your patches on GitHub.


Contributions are accepted via GitHub Pull Requests submitted from the developer's own Fork of the onos-config repository. The following diagram illustrates the steps required to establish such a Fork and to create a Pull Request.

Git workflow

In the following subsections, we explain the contribution workflow for one of the repositories, namely onos-config. The same workflow can be used for all the other repos under onosproject. In the following examples just substitute any onos-config reference with the name of the repo you are working on, such as onos-topo or simulators. Any step that do not have onos-config in them can be used as is.

1. Fork on GitHub

  1. Visit
  2. Click Fork button (top right) to establish your own GitHub repository fork.

2. Clone Fork

The onos-config code should be placed under your GOPATH (per Go workspace conventions) using the following procedure:

If you have not set and exported the GOPATH environment variable, please do so:

export GOPATH=$(go env GOPATH)

Similarly, set and export the GIT_USER environment variable to match your github profile name:

export GIT_USER={your github profile name}

Then, clone your fork of the onos-config repository:

mkdir -p $ONOS_ROOT && cd $ONOS_ROOT

git clone$GIT_USER/onos-config.git
# or: git clone$GIT_USER/onos-config.git

cd $ONOS_ROOT/onos-config
git remote add upstream
# or: git remote add upstream

# Never push to upstream master
git remote set-url --push upstream no_push

# Confirm that your remotes make sense:
git remote -v

3. Branch

Get your local master up to date:

cd $GOPATH/src/
git fetch upstream
git checkout master
git rebase upstream/master

Branch from it:

git checkout -b myfeature

Then edit code on the myfeature branch.

4. Keep Branch in Sync

While on your myfeature branch

git fetch upstream
git rebase upstream/master

Please don't use git pull instead of the above fetch / rebase. git pull does a merge, which leaves merge commits. These make the commit history messy and violate the principle that commits ought to be individually understandable and useful (see below). You can also consider changing your .git/config file via git config branch.autoSetupRebase always to change the behavior of git pull.

5. Commit

Commit your changes.

git commit

If you make other changes pleas add them to a new commit and thus keep the history of your work.
Your branch, after you open a pull request, will be merged with a squash and commit strategy, thus showing as only one commit.

6. Push

When ready to review (or just to establish an offsite backup or your work), push your branch to your fork on

git push origin myfeature

7. Create a Pull Request

  1. Visit your fork at$user/onos-config
  2. Click the Compare & Pull Request button next to your myfeature branch.

Please follow the pull request guidelines .

If you have upstream write access, please refrain from using the GitHub UI for creating PRs, because GitHub will create the PR branch inside the main repository rather than inside your fork.

Get a Code Review

Once your pull request has been opened it will be assigned to one or more reviewers. Those reviewers will do a thorough code review, looking for correctness, bugs, opportunities for improvement, documentation and comments, and style.

Commit changes made in response to review comments to the same branch on your fork.

Very small PRs are easy to review. Very large PRs are very difficult to review.

Squash and Merge

Upon merge (by either you or your reviewer), all commits left on the review branch should represent meaningful milestones or units of work. Use commits to add clarity to the development and review process.

Before merging a PR, squash any fix review feedback, typo, merged, and rebased sorts of commits.

It is not imperative that every commit in a PR compile and pass tests independently, but it is worth striving for.

In particular, if you happened to have used git merge and have merge commits, please squash those away: they do not meet the above test.

A nifty way to manage the commits in your PR is to do an interactive rebase, which will let you tell git what to do with every commit:

git fetch upstream
git rebase -i upstream/master

For mass automated fixups (e.g. automated doc formatting), use one or more commits for the changes to tooling and a final commit to apply the fixup en masse. This makes reviews easier.

How to Revert a Commit

In case you wish to revert a commit, use the following instructions.

If you have upstream write access, please refrain from using the Revert button in the GitHub UI for creating the PR, because GitHub will create the PR branch inside the main repository rather than inside your fork.

1. Create a branch and sync it with upstream

# create a branch
git checkout -b myrevert

# sync the branch with upstream
git fetch upstream
git rebase upstream/master

2. Revert the prior commit(s)

If the commit you wish to revert it a merge commit, run this:

# SHA is the hash of the merge commit you wish to revert
git revert -m 1 SHA

If it is a single commit, then run the following:

# SHA is the hash of the single commit you wish to revert
git revert SHA

The above will create a new commit reverting the changes.

3. Push this new commit to your remote

git push ${your_remote_name} myrevert

4. Create a pull request using this branch

Community Guidelines

This project follows Google's Open Source Community Guidelines.

Contributing to ONOS Docs

See for details on how to add to the documentation.