OVS is a soft switch and it supports various protocol such as OpenFlow, NetConf. Based on the requirement, this soft switch can be used for different type of data transmission. It gives us more flexibility compare to hardware based switch. New protocol and various application can be integrated.
Even a hardware switch apart from data transmission it does many things. Due to that various commands/cli are introduced and those commands are categorized as per their functionality.
OVS-VSCTL commands mainly use to add/delete ports.
OVS-OFCTL commands mainly deals with OpenFlow rules/pipeline.
OVS-DPCTL commands mainly deals with data path change. Like when a packet receive with specific IP then what to do with that packet.
OVS-APPCTL is used to control different applications such as checking/setting the routes, tunnels etc.