Designed to address today’s applications delivery challenges, F5 combines a high-performance application services fabric, intelligent layer 4-7 services, programmability, and application fluency to enable organisations to achieve new economies of scale from both a cost savings and an operational perspective.
According to Simon McCullough, major channel account manager for southern Africa at F5 Networks, this helps organisations align to the business, deploy applications faster, and automate for operational efficiency.
“For our African customers, 2017 will again illustrate how important it is to deploy a flexible solution that both allows for the future needs and growth of a business in order to enable a superior customer experience,” adds Anton Jacobsz, managing director at Networks Unlimited, an authorised value-added distributer of F5 products throughout Africa.
With F5, organisations can build elastic, flexible application delivery fabrics that are ready to meet the challenges of optimising and securing applications in a constantly evolving environment.
McCullough points out that to succeed in this dynamic environment, organisations must create networks that combine core layer 4-7 functionality, programmability, and application fluency into a scalable Application Delivery Network. “While these components all bring their individual benefits, the real, lasting value lies in the resulting synergy of the combined solution. Failure to deliver even one of these technology components greatly reduces the business value of the infrastructure,” he says.
F5 offers the following five advantages:
* Advanced architecture – F5 offers an advanced architecture solution for application services that allow organisations to create a robust and scalable application delivery fabric with a rich set of functions to improve the user experience, add security, and provide analytic data when application traffic passes through the infrastructure.
* Ease of application deployment – At the heart of this fabric is the F5 BIG-IP platform, which is designed to supply application security, acceleration, and availability services. Available in physical, virtual, and cloud editions, the BIG-IP platform is easy to deploy into as many locations and architectures as you need, while maintaining consistency across environments. Application-specific proxies provide parsing and manipulation of protocols such as HTTP, and SIP. This deep understanding of application protocols enables better traffic management and reporting, and opens up opportunities to control and manage traffic more effectively. “Being able to route, drop, or manipulate traffic based on application values such as HTTP cookies or SIP header makes it easier to simplify application infrastructures and build additional application capability into the delivery fabric. Having understanding and control of application traffic at a strategic point in the network can speed and simplify application development cycles. Application functions can be outsourced to the network, where they can be done more efficiently at a strategic point of control within the delivery stack,” explains McCullough.
* Consolidation of multiple services – F5 offers advanced traffic management, optimisation, and security services on one BIG-IP platform. “Consolidating services with F5 helps make it easier to adopt multiple functions and save costs. By offering a full platform, F5 enables you to rapidly deploy, secure, and optimise so it is easier and more affordable to get the capabilities you need,” elaborates McCullough. He says that F5 believes that application services should not only be easy to provision, they should be easy to procure. “When it comes to IT, a variety of deployment and purchasing models exist today. Through innovative licensing and product bundling practices, F5 supports the deployment of flexible services with cloud, hybrid, and usage-based IT models.”
* Programmability – The F5 BIG-IP platform has a well-documented suite of programmable components across the control, data, and management planes. Organisations can use these components to build an adaptive and automated application delivery fabric with real-time control over application traffic and device configuration.
* Scalability – Programmability, fluency, and functionality combine to create application-specific services that improve end user experience, increase security, and drive innovation. “This is true only if they can be delivered at the right point in the network and at the scale required by the application,” states McCullough. “F5 provides a secure, elastic fabric that can deliver application services anywhere they are required.” The F5 ScaleN architecture creates clusters of up to 32 devices (physical, virtual, or mixed), which form a highly available, elastic delivery fabric. Application workloads migrate between devices in the event of failure and can be moved should more resources be required.