Why OpenFlow Software Define Networking Needs to be Open Source
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Today, if you buy a networking switch from a large vendor, it's not easy to modify the software running on it. What Software Defined Networking (SDN) enables switch owners to do is extend the functionality of the network. SDN also provides open APIs that enables orchestration of applications on the network.
OpenFlow got its start as a research project led by Guido Appenzeller while he was a Professor at Stanford. OpenFlow enables software defined networking (SDN) for programmable networks.
In Appenzeller's view, for SDN to be successful it requires open protocols, open APIs and open source code. Appenzeller's startup company Big Switch Networks is currently in the process of building a commercial OpenFlow controller.
"The controller is a centralized control plane that allows you to orchestrate your network infrastructure," Appenzeller said. "The base layer of the control is open source."