F5 Networks, the global leader in application delivery networking, has announced new application optimisation capabilities for its application delivery controller (ADC) product line. The announcement makes F5 the first ADC vendor to offer integrated support for SPDY, a Web protocol designed to optimise the user experience and bolster security.
As part of the company’s Dynamic Data Centre vision, F5 is extending its leadership in optimising Web-based applications across private, public and hybrid cloud architectures.
The offering includes a number of new front-end optimisation capabilities that streamline the delivery of image-heavy content, prioritise traffic to overcome mobile network latency, and offer visibility into application performance across hosted and cloud applications.
F5 technologies serve as a strategic point of control for application acceleration, providing insight into the overall context of users, applications and networks to ensure optimal delivery and avoid costly infrastructure changes.
“Today’s organisations are struggling to ensure a fast user experience within the changing landscape of cloud-based infrastructure and myriad mobile devices,” says Jason Needham, senior director of product management.
“With F5’s new ADO solutions, customers can optimise any Web-based application without the need to spend millions of dollars upgrading their infrastructure or engaging in costly performance tuning.”
F5 technologies apply front-end, network and data centre optimisations in concert to improve overall application performance and enhance the user experience, regardless of device, browser or location.
“Today’s announcement adds new technologies to F5’s portfolio such as image optimisation, CSS object versioning and content re-ordering. In addition, F5 solutions now provide an innovative approach for enabling SPDY protocol optimisations for any legacy application.
“F5’s new centralised application analytics capabilities enable streamlined performance monitoring across hybrid cloud environments without deploying or managing additional agents, code or servers,” says Martin Walshaw, F5 senior systems engineer.
Many industry vendors offer products that only address specific performance bottlenecks. Implementing these multiple technologies creates additional complexity and cost, perpetuating the growing problems companies are trying to solve within their data centres. With F5, customers can integrate optimisation throughout the application delivery infrastructure, eliminating the need for point products.
Building on the BIG-IP product family and the company’s TMOS architecture platform, F5 provides easy-to-manage solutions that are capable of addressing an organisation’s needs today and into the future. With the announcement, F5 continues to deliver on its commitment to improving application performance.
SPDY is an emerging Web protocol that augments HTTP. Developed by Google, this protocol improves application performance up to 50% by enabling multiple data transfers within a single connection, as well as through compression, and client prioritisation for enabled browsers such as Chrome and Firefox.
Historically, organisations needed to update their Web server infrastructure to take advantage of SPDY’s performance improvements, adding cost and complexity to their systems.
With F5’s SPDY Gateway, companies can take advantage of these performance improvements without updating their Web application server infrastructure. F5 delivers this capability by translating SPDY requests into HTTP on the back end.
Users have come to expect mobile performance that is equivalent or better than that achieved on a typical desktop computer. However, mobile devices present unique challenges due to limitations of processing power, small screens, a variety of operating systems and browsers and the latency and packet loss introduced by mobile networks.
By understanding and addressing these factors comprehensively, F5 provides a superior experience for mobile and remote users with the delivery of image optimisation, CSS object versioning, content re-ordering.
According to HTTP Archive, images represent over 60% of content of a typical Web page. F5’s advanced image optimisation solution recognises the user’s access environment and streamlines image delivery by adjusting image size appropriately for mobile devices, removing unnecessary metadata from the transmission and converting the image format.
Internal testing demonstrates F5’s image optimisation reduces the size of images by up to 50%. This reduces page load times as well as bandwidth needs and costs.
F5’s Enterprise Manager Centralised Analytics Module helps customers monitor and understand application performance across multiple data centres without adding agents, code or servers. This single view of relevant statistics provides critical visibility, enabling customers to monitor performance, identify potential bottlenecks and better plan for IT needs.
By providing real-time application performance metrics such as application response time, network latency, and connection statistics, as well as diagnostic and troubleshooting information for each BIG-IP device, Enterprise Manager further quantifies the benefits of using F5’s optimisation technologies.