SDN Code Resources

SDN Code Resources

The Open Networking Foundation is dedicated to accelerating the adoption of open SDN and fostering innovation in the SDN ecosystem. Open source software is a key route to developing de facto standards, fostering interoperability, and enabling newcomers to programmable networking to solve market needs in practical ways.

ONF has embarked on a variety of open software initiatives, including a global competition for the creation of an OpenFlow® driver (2013), and sponsoring projects like the SampleTap™ application and the SPRING-OPEN projects (2014) to enable wider market adoption of OpenFlow® and SDN.

In 2015, ONF announced the launch of, a new open source software community and code repository, designed to promote commercially deployable open SDN solutions, free from vendor lock-in. The Software Leadership Council (SLC), a team of industry luminaries with experience in open source software and community development, was established to help guide ONF’s open source projects.

Atrium 2015/A, an open SDN software distribution, was released in June 2015 to address critical integration challenges faced by network operators. Two intent-based projects, Aspen and Boulder, were released in September 2015 to highlight the need for network portability and agility through intent-based code.

ONF will continue to foster, sponsor, or otherwise encourage the development and publication of open SDN solutions that are available through an open source licensing regime (usually Apache 2), and freely available on the ONF GitHub repository. If you or your organization is interested in donating software to be used for this purpose, please contact ONF’s Technical Program Director, Rick Bauer

For a complete list of ONF’s open source software projects, please visit

OpenFlow® Driver

The OpenFlow® driver is the first open-source code developed by the SDN community to create an interoperable open-source implementation of the latest OpenFlow® standard. This driver is intended for use by the larger SDN community including network equipment vendors, ISVs and operators for easy transitions between different implementations of the OpenFlow® protocol.

Developed by CPqD, an institution focused on innovation in information and communication technology, this OpenFlow® driver was declared the winner of the industry’s first competition held by ONF to create an open-source OpenFlow® driver. This code is available for download in the ONF GitHub repository for use by both members and non-members.

Sample Tap Application


The SampleTap application (see figure above) is an educational tool based on OpenFlow® 1.0 and designed to run on an OpenDaylight controller. Briefly explained, the SampleTap application allows any OpenFlow® 1.0-compliant switch to be used as a tap-aggregation device. This particular application is a valuable aid in filtering out specific flows in the network for analysis or capture—critical for troubleshooting. The educational experience in using ONF’s SampleTap is in being able to cost-effectively observe and monitor the traffic between any two points in the network, without having to move around a host of network cables. SampleTap also provides a low-footprint means of copying and filtering all relevant network data, while allowing all data to flow to its intended destination unimpeded. SampleTap is an application designed for a low impact, minimally-disruptive OpenFlow® experience. While more complex operations with SDN are available today and are sold by many ONF member companies, SampleTap allows end users to experiment with SDN behaviors in rudimentary ways without disrupting their live networks. Developed by Wiretap Labs, the SampleTap app gives the end user the ability to program a series of match/action requests on the incoming tap port, add port-chains for transformation (e.g. truncation, decryption etc.) and distribute captured packets to multiple capture devices simultaneously. SampleTap is offered under the Apache 2.0 open-source license and is available for download in the ONF GitHub repository.

Editor’s Note: ONF recommends SampleTap to be installed in testbed networks only, and not installed or otherwise deployed on a production network. If network tapping applications are sought for formal deployment in a production network, many ONF member companies sell and service these applications.