Exploring flexiWAN: The Future of Open-Source SD-WAN Solutions

Modern SD-WAN solutions often encounter issues related to complex management, high costs, and vendor lock-in. flexiWAN offers a different approach.

the logo for flexi wan
By Ivor Kreso
Filip Dimkovski
Edited by Filip Dimkovski

Updated July 21, 2024.

A cityscape with a network of dots over it signifying modern SD-WAN solutions

In this article

What Is SD-WAN?

Issues With Modern SD-WAN Solutions

Why flexiWAN Is Different

Trying Out flexiWAN

Traditional networking methods, while once sufficient, have now become increasingly inadequate in the face of growing demands for higher bandwidth, better security, and more flexible connectivity options. As businesses continue to expand and embrace cloud technologies, the need for a more dynamic networking approach has led to the rise of Software-Defined Wide Area Networks (SD-WAN). Over the past few years, SD-WAN has emerged as a revolutionary solution, transforming how enterprises manage their network infrastructure.

What Is SD-WAN?

SD-WAN stands for Software-Defined Wide Area Network, a technology designed to enhance and simplify the management and operation of a WAN by decoupling the networking hardware from its control mechanism.

This separation allows for centralized control, enabling administrators to manage traffic across multiple sites through a single interface. SD-WAN dynamically selects the best path for traffic based on pre-defined policies, ensuring optimal performance, minimal latency, and reduced downtime.

» Still confused? Learn more about what SD-WAN does

SD-WAN's Primary Functions

  • Intelligent path control: By leveraging multiple connection types such as broadband, LTE, and MPLS, SD-WAN can route traffic through the most efficient paths, balancing load and avoiding congestion.
  • WAN optimization: SD-WAN simplifies network management by decoupling the control layer from the hardware layer, allowing for centralized management and policy enforcement across multiple sites.
  • Secure connectivity: SD-WAN solutions typically utilize Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) with IPsec encryption to scramble the data (making it unreadable interceptors) before creating secure tunnels for data transmission across the public internet. This capability is particularly beneficial for businesses that require high availability and performance for their critical applications.
  • Simplified network deployment: SD-WAN solutions simplify the deployment and management of network services through automation, reducing the need for expensive and complex hardware traditionally associated with WAN setups.

This evolution in networking provides businesses with the agility to adapt to changing conditions and the capability to optimize traffic flow dynamically.

» Learn more: IPsec vs. SD-WAN

Issues With Modern SD-WAN Solutions

Despite the significant advantages that SD-WAN brings to the table, modern solutions are not without their challenges. Enterprises often encounter issues related to complex management, high costs, and vendor lock-in.

Complex Management

One of the primary issues with modern SD-WAN solutions is the complexity involved in managing them. Traditional networking approaches lack the automation required to handle large-scale deployments efficiently. While SD-WAN aims to simplify network management, many solutions still require extensive manual configuration and oversight.

This complexity can overwhelm IT teams, leading to potential errors and increased operational costs. The need for a central management platform to control thousands of devices adds another layer of intricacy, which can be daunting for new adopters.

High Costs

Cost is another significant concern for businesses considering SD-WAN solutions. Traditional SD-WAN vendors often implement pricing models based on bandwidth usage, which can be prohibitively expensive, especially for small to medium-sized enterprises. Additionally, these solutions frequently require the purchase of proprietary hardware and annual subscription fees, further escalating the total cost of ownership.

The need for additional features or higher performance capabilities can also necessitate purchasing new, more expensive hardware, making it challenging for organizations to predict and manage their networking expenses effectively.

Vendor Lock-In

Vendor lock-in is a common issue with many modern SD-WAN solutions. Proprietary systems often tie customers to specific vendors, limiting the flexibility to switch providers or integrate other technologies. This can stifle innovation and hinder the ability to adapt to changing business needs. Closed-source solutions also mean that businesses cannot review or modify the underlying code, which can be a significant drawback in terms of security and customization.

» Here's how to choose your SD-WAN vendor

Why flexiWAN Is Different

flexiWAN is the world's first open-source SD-WAN solution, aiming to democratize the SD-WAN market by offering a transparent and flexible alternative to traditional vendors. It combines proprietary development with existing open-source components and provides a robust and scalable networking solution.

» Here's why SD-WAN deployment can be easy


flexiWAN's architecture consists of two main components:

  1. flexiEdge, the edge router software
  2. flexiManage, the central management system

These components work together to provide seamless connectivity and centralized control over the network, allowing for easy deployment and management of multiple devices.

The open-source nature of flexiWAN ensures that businesses are not locked into a single vendor, providing the freedom to choose their hardware and integrate with other systems as needed.

» Discover the benefits of a multi-vendor SD-WAN strategy


flexiWAN's open-source and modular architecture offers unparalleled flexibility. Unlike traditional SD-WAN solutions, flexiWAN does not impose artificial limitations on throughput, network ports, or device capabilities.

Users can choose their hardware and deployment method, whether bare metal, virtual machines, or cloud platforms like AWS and Google Cloud.

This flexibility extends to the software itself, allowing businesses to customize and extend functionalities according to their specific needs. The ability to use existing infrastructure or certified hardware pre-installed with flexiWAN further enhances its adaptability.


flexiWAN excels in simplifying connectivity management. The platform supports automatic full-mesh and hub-and-spoke tunnel creation, making it easy to establish secure connections between sites. AI-based network healing ensures that the system can automatically detect and rectify issues, maintaining optimal performance and minimizing downtime.

flexiManage allows administrators to control all devices from a single interface, streamlining network operations and reducing the risk of errors.


One of the most significant advantages of flexiWAN is its transparent and cost-effective pricing model. Unlike traditional SD-WAN vendors that charge based on bandwidth, flexiWAN adopts a device-based pricing structure, simplifying cost management and making it easier for businesses to predict their expenses.

There are 3 deployment options to suit different needs:

  1. Shared environment: Ideal for smaller deployments and proof-of-concept trials, this option allows multiple users to share the same infrastructure while maintaining isolated environments.
  2. Dedicated environment: This option is suitable for larger deployments. It provides a dedicated set of servers for a single customer and offers greater control and customization capabilities.
  3. Self-hosted: Designed for extensive deployments, this option enables businesses to host the management system themselves, providing complete control over the infrastructure.
FlexiWAN Pricing

Trying Out flexiWAN

Getting started with flexiWAN is straightforward and user-friendly. Interested businesses can visit our website to create a free account, which includes a month-long trial period with full access to the platform and support. During this trial period, you can explore the features and capabilities of flexiWAN to see if it works for you.

FlexiWAN Pricing

We also offer comprehensive documentation and training webinars, providing step-by-step guides and videos to help users deploy and manage their SD-WAN solution. For those interested in a more tailored experience, our pre-sales team can provide customized demos and proof-of-concept support, ensuring that the solution meets specific business requirements.