OpFlex is currently being set up as an open-source reference implementation, and Cisco is seeking to fully standardize the protocol through the IETF. The open source work for OpFlex is being done in the Linux Foundation’s OpenDaylight SDN project. Cisco is one of the leaders of the OpenDaylight project and has contributed a significant amount of code to the effort.
Cohen said that in his view, prior to OpFlex there has not been a standardized way of passing along higher-level policy in a network. He added that the OpFlex protocol is being designed in a way that makes it open and able to support any number of different devices
Going a step higher in the stack, the Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) is the policy engine for enabling ACI across the network. APIC will now be able to get policy by way of OpFlex.