Jul 16, 2012
Remember “The Beverly Hillbillies”? A show about a poor mountaineer who barely kept his family fed until, one day, the family patriarch (Jed Clampett) had a very fortunate hunting accident and struck oil (“Black Gold. “Texas Tea”). They moved off their land and resettled in California, with the city-folk in Beverly Hills.
The entire TV series focused on the family living in a mansion next to Milburn Drysdale (Jed’s banker), who was dead-set on keeping the Clampetts in Beverly Hills – and their money in his bank. After Jed inadvertently struck oil, he and his family never again had to work to get by. They went from being poor folk to rich folk – automatically.
Now, let me tell you a story of how your wide area network (WAN) turns into Black Gold – Texas Tea. And it’s no accident! It’s a capability that can automatically optimize all the traffic going over your network. It’s unique, and I only know one WAN optimization vendor that does it – Silver Peak.
While, most WAN optimizers solve application delivery and data replication issues by working at the application level, if you need a solution that can handle all your applications and live data automatically, you need a network-based WAN optimizer. Because they operate at the network layer, they work with all applications, including business-critical applications – out-of-the-box.
With application-based WAN optimization, not only do you have to make sure the device supports all your applications; you also have to make sure the device is current with all application versions. For example, if an application vendor releases a new version, and the WAN optimizer hasn’t been updated to support it, that application will not be supported by the WAN optimizer until it has caught up with the new application version.
But I digress. Back to automatic optimization. The auto-optimization automatically creates tunnels between the WAN optimizer and active flows. For example, with TCP traffic, the auto-optimization process begins by sending TCP control packets that, in the process of handshaking, determines which tunnel to use as they open the connection. What is very unique here is the optimization tunneling, that, while its underpinnings are complicated, the complexity is hidden. This reminds me of how security companies hid the underlying complexities of IPSec by building a user-friendly front-end for iron-clad VPN tunneling.
The WAN optimization appliances automatically create network tunnels and auto-optimize traffic immediately. You can optionally customize policy and tunnel configurations. For example, you can enable the WAN optimizer’s auto-tunnel feature to automatically create tunnels to all detected peers within a group to auto-optimize both TCP and UDP traffic.
Ever wish you could strike oil? Perhaps you can (metaphorically speaking), with network-based WAN optimization that uses unique network tunneling technology to automatically optimize all your traffic. I guarantee you; it’s easier than shooting at the ground and striking oil.
image source: flickr (oldmaison)