The evergreen Swiss was in full control against Colombia's Alejandro Falla, marking the start of his 62nd consecutive appearance at a grand slam tournament with a 6-3 6-3 6-4 victory on court Philippe Chatrier.

When he walked off, however, a fan sauntered on and began trying to snap a selfie with a mobile phone before he was belatedly removed by a security guard.

"I'm not happy about it. Obviously not one second I'm happy about it. It happened yesterday in the practice, too," a ruffled Federer told reporters, adding that organisers had apologised.

The 17-times major winner, champion at Roland Garros in 2009, was the star turn on a low-key opening day in a sunny French capital, taking to the court after women's third seed Simona Halep got the ball rolling.

Romanian Halep, seeded three after reaching the final last year, was made to work hard by 91st-ranked Russian Evgeniya Rodina, huffing and puffing her way to a 7-5 6-4 victory.

"It was a tough match, because it was the first round and it is always is difficult to start the tournament," she told reporters. "I did make some easy mistakes, but it's normal and I accept that. Next round I will be better, for sure."

Federer also made a few errors as he loosened up against a player he almost fell to in the first round at Wimbledon in 2010. But he was never in any danger.

Strolling on to court with a perfectly-matched violet shirt, pink shorts and black bandana, 33-year-old Federer quickly warmed to his task, while Falla offered enough resistance to provide some lunchtime entertainment.

"Winning a match like this is a good thing," Federer, ever-present at grand slams this century, said. "I hit a lot of balls today. Clearly hope that I will start to play better and better as the match, as the tournament goes on."

Federer, conveniently in the opposite side of the draw to nine-times champions Rafa Nadal, world number one Novak Djokovic and third seed Andy Murray, will have a few days off before a clash with Spain's Marcel Granollers.

His eight-seeded compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka, one of several players to beat Nadal on clay this season, was a straight-sets winner against Turkey's Marsel Ilhan.

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