Vanetza ships with a simple demo application called socktap. You can enable the build process for this application by the BUILD_SOCKTAP CMake option. When socktap is going to be built, gpsd is required as an additional dependency.

Vanetza tapping on sockets

socktap runs Vanetza on top of Linux raw packet sockets and demonstrates the basic API usage. This enables tests on commodity hardware, i.e. no special V2X or Car2X hardware is required. However, raw packet sockets cannot replace such dedicated hardware entirly. Consider socktap as an experimental application showcasing some of Vanetza’s features.

If you have access to V2X hardware from Cohda Wireless, you can also run socktap on their units. A special CMake option SOCKTAP_WITH_COHDA_LLC exists to build socktap for operation on Cohda’s LLC API. Please refer to our Cohda SDK building recipe for details.


There are multiple variants of socktap. socktap-hello sends simple BTP-B messages with the binary payload 0xc0ffee. socktap-cam sends vehicle CAM messages and optionally supports some security options.


Since socktap builds upon raw packet sockets you need to run it with special privileges. Either run socktap as root user or set the CAP_NET_RAW capabilities on the executables. You can do this via sudo setcap cap_net_raw+ep bin/socktap-<variant>. When CAP_NET_RAW is attached to the socktap binary you can run it as ordinary user.


You can locate socktap in your build directory at bin/socktap-. It requires the network device name as startup argument on which socktap should send and receive packets. Usually, such devices are named eth0 or wlan0. You can look up the available devices on your machine with the ip link command. If you want to use the local loopback device (usually lo) you need to override the used MAC address using --mac-address to receive packets. This is due to the MAC address being 00:00:00:00:00:00 for both sides and the router dropping incoming packets with its own address.


This demo application has been initially developed as part of a student’s project at Hochschule Darmstadt in summer term 2016. Participating students were in alphabetical order: Sachin Kashyap Bukkambudhi Satyanarayana, Alvita Marina Menezes, Mrunmayi Parchure, Subashini Rajan and Deeksha Venkadari Yogendra. Since then, @kelunik and @glmax have contributed a lot to socktap.