Illustration for Bird-lg in Go (Bird Looking Glass)

Bird-lg in Go (Bird Looking Glass)

What's BIRD? And What's Bird-lg?

BIRD is a popular BGP routing software used on Linux. I mainly use Bird in the DN42 network, to establish connections with other users.

Bird-lg is a Python 2 based program developed by GitHub user sileht. It provides a web interface to show the status of BIRD routing software on each server, as well as query routes to specified IPs.

Why Rewrite in Go?

  • Bird-lg is based on Python 2 and Flask and takes more memory (20-30MB).

    Bird-lgproxy also takes around 20MB and is required on every server. On the 512MB VPS where this site is hosted, there had been multiple cases where memory ran out, and the on-disk SWAP was too slow. In this case, Docker, Nginx, MySQL, PHP would crash one after one, and a reboot would be necessary.

  • The rewritten version in Go takes only 6 MB.

  • Bird-lg queries status of multiple servers in series rather than parallel. Sometimes when the network condition was being subpar, or ZeroTier One had a glitch, it would take a long time to read all the statuses.

  • The rewritten version in Go uses Goroutines to query multiple servers in parallel rather than serial. Page loading latency is reduced by magnitudes when there are many servers or when the network is bad.

  • This is also my practice in programming in Go.

What Functionalities are Done?

For Bird-lgproxy the following things are done:

  • Sending requests to Bird
  • Running Traceroute and returning the result

For Bird-lg the following things are done:

  • Basic status display:

    Basic Status Display

  • Querying route information to specified IP:

    Querying Route Information to Specified IP

  • IP & ASN highlighting in results, and WHOIS lookups:

    WHOIS Domain Queries

    WHOIS ASN Queries

  • Traceroute (which shows a routing issue to DN42 right now):

    Traceroute Output

What Aren't Done?

Compared to the Bird-lg in Python, Bird-lgproxy lacks the following functionalities:

  • IP source restriction

Bird-lg lacks:

  • Query history on the right of the page

I don't implement these features since I don't need them. For example, I simply set Bird-lgproxy to listen on a specific network interface and use this as a way of source restriction.


Project site & Source code:

Simply go build in the corresponding directory. Use -h parameter to see available parameter items. The program doesn't have a configuration file, and all configuration is done via parameters.

Demo site:

I also modified the Python bird-lg and added parallel requests with grequests. The project is available at

By the way, the Go Bird-lgproxy is a direct replacement for Python Bird-lgproxy, and can work together with the Python Bird-lg.