The CIXP was formally established on January 1st, 1996 using standard Ethernet switching technology. In 1989 the first pan-European internet backbone was established through CERN, and in 1990 the first T1 connection to NSFnet in the USA was made. At the time, trans-Atlantic speeds were at a record 1.5Mb/s, about 10% of today's ADSL for home-use.

Following the de-regulation of the European Telecom industry in 1996, the CIXP became one of the first "carrier neutral" Internet Exchange Points (IXP) in the world.

The CIXP was subsequently extended through dark fibers to another neutral location in Geneva (Telehouse Switzerland SA now owned by Equinix). The CIXP was one of the very first IXPs to incorporate an "all optical" photonic switch from Glimmerglass as part of its infrastructure in order to gain additional operational flexibility - but also to gain experience with new modes of operations like "on-demand optical wavelengths", i.e. "lambdas".

In November 2012, Equinix inaugurated a second datacentre in Geneva and the CIXP was extended to include it. The three sites (CERN, Equinix GV1 and Equinix GV2) are connected with a redundant optical ring, greatly increasing the peering possibilities of the distributed exchange.

The CIXP has been a member of Euro-IX (European Internet Exchange Association) since the very first meeting of that organisation in October, 2001.