Getting Started


The YANG Development Kit (YDK) is a Software Development Kit that provides API’s that are modeled in YANG. The main goal of YDK is to reduce the learning curve of YANG data models by expressing the model semantics in an API and abstracting protocol/encoding details. YDK is composed of a core package that defines services and providers, plus one or more module bundles that are based on YANG models.


A docker image is automatically built with the latest ydk-py installed. This be used to run ydk-py without installing anything natively on your machine.

To use the docker image, install docker on your system and run the below command. See the docker documentation for more details:

docker run -it ydkdev/ydk-py

System Requirements

Please follow the below instructions to install the system requirements before installing YDK-Py:

Note: libssh 0.8.0 and later does not support separate threading library which is required for YDK. Please use libssh versions older than 0.8.0.


Ubuntu (Debian-based)

$ sudo apt-get install gdebi-core
$ wget
# Use the below for Ubuntu Artful
$ wget
$ sudo gdebi libydk_0.7.3-1_amd64.deb

Centos (Fedora-based)

Note: Currently, only Centos7/RHEL7 are known to work.

$ sudo yum install epel-release
$ sudo yum install libssh-devel gcc-c++ python-devel
$ sudo yum install

# Upgrade compiler to gcc 5.*
$ yum install centos-release-scl -y > /dev/null
$ yum install devtoolset-4-gcc* -y > /dev/null
$ ln -sf /opt/rh/devtoolset-4/root/usr/bin/gcc /usr/bin/cc
$ ln -sf /opt/rh/devtoolset-4/root/usr/bin/g++ /usr/bin/c++

Please see this issue on YDK GitHub for any potential/usage installation on CentOS.

To install the core and bundles on Centos, please follow the below steps.


pip install ydk
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python2.7/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-ietf
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python2.7/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-openconfig
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python2.7/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-cisco-ios-xr
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python2.7/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-cisco-ios-xe


pip install ydk
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.4/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-ietf
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.4/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-openconfig
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.4/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-cisco-ios-xr
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.4/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-cisco-ios-xe


pip install ydk
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.6/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-ietf
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.6/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-openconfig
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.6/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-cisco-ios-xr
pip install --install-option="--install-purelib=/usr/lib64/python3.6/site-packages" --no-deps ydk-models-cisco-ios-xe


You can download the latest python package from here. Note: Please do not use the homebrew version of python as it causes issues with installing ydk packages. Please execute brew rm python python3 to remove any homebrew python packages.

It is required to install Xcode command line tools, homebrew and the following homebrew packages on your system before installing YDK-Py.

$ xcode-select --install
$ /usr/bin/ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"
$ brew install pkg-config libssh xml2 libxml2 curl pcre cmake
$ curl -O
$ sudo installer -pkg libydk-0.7.3-Darwin.pkg -target /


Currently, YDK-Py from release 0.6.0 onwards is not supported on Windows.

Python Requirements

Both Python 2 and 3 are supported. At least Python2.7 or Python 3.4 must be installed in your system.

Backwards Compatibility Notes

When installing and using the 0.6.0 and newer releases of YDK-Py, please refer to the Backward compatibility notes.

How to install

Quick Install

You can install the latest model packages from the Python package index. Note that, in some systems, you need to install the new package as root. You get a fully operational YDK environment by installing the cisco-ios-xr and/or cisco-ios-xe bundle(s) (depending on whether you’re developing for an IOS XR or IOS XE platform) which automatically installs all other YDK-related packages (ydk, openconfig and ietf packages):

$ pip install ydk-models-cisco-ios-xr
$ pip install ydk-models-cisco-ios-xe

Alternatively, you can perform a partial installation. If you only want to install the openconfig bundle and its dependencies (ydk and ietf packages), execute:

$ pip install ydk-models-openconfig

If you only want to install the ietf bundle and its dependencies (ydk package), execute:

$ pip install ydk-models-ietf

Installing from Source

If you prefer not to use the YDK packages in the Python package index, you need to install manually the ydk core package and then the model bundles you plan to use. To install the ydk core package, execute:

$ cd core
core$ python sdist
core$ pip install dist/ydk*.gz

Once you have installed the ydk core package, you can install one more model bundles. Note that some bundles have dependencies on other bundles. Those dependencies are already captured in the bundle package. Make sure you install the desired bundles in the order below. To install the ietf bundle, execute:

core$ cd ../ietf
ietf$ python sdist
ietf$ pip install dist/ydk*.gz

To install the openconfig bundle, execute:

ietf$ cd ../openconfig
openconfig$ python sdist
openconfig$ pip install dist/ydk*.gz

To install the cisco-ios-xr bundle, execute:

openconfig$ cd ../cisco-ios-xr
cisco-ios-xr$ python sdist
cisco-ios-xr$ pip install dist/ydk*.gz
cisco-ios-xr$ cd ..

Using a Virtual Environment

You may want to perform the installation under a Python virtual environment (virtualenv/virtualenvwrapper). A virtual environment allows you to install multiple versions of YDK if needed. In addition, it prevents any potential conflicts between package dependencies in your system.

To install virtual environment support in your system, execute:

$ pip install virtualenv virtualenvwrapper
$ source /usr/local/bin/

In some systems (e.g. Debian-based Linux), you need to install support for Python virtual environments as root:

$ sudo pip install virtualenv virtualenvwrapper
$ source /usr/local/bin/

Create a new virtual environment:

$ mkvirtualenv -p python2.7 ydk-py

At this point, you can perform the quick install or the installation from source described above. Take into account that must not attempt to install YDK as root under a virtual environment.


To get started with using the YDK API, there are sample apps available in the YDK-Py repository. For example, to run the sample, execute:

(ydk-py)ydk-py$ cd core/samples
(ydk-py)samples$ ./ -h
Usage: [-h | --help] [options]

-h, --help            show this help message and exit
-v VERSION, --version=VERSION
                    force NETCONF version 1.0 or 1.1
-p PASSWORD, --password=PASSWORD
--proto=PROTO         Which transport protocol to use, one of ssh or tcp
--host=HOST           NETCONF agent hostname
--port=PORT           NETCONF agent SSH port

(ydk-py)samples$ ./ --host <ip-address-of-netconf-server> -u <username> -p <password> --port <port-number>

Documentation and Support