Experiences with A10 AX series Load Balancers?

Does anyone have any experiences good/bad/indifferent with this company and their products? They claim 2x the performance at ½ the cost and am a bit leery as you can imagine.

We are looking to replace our aging F5 BigIP LTM's and will be evaluating these along with the Netscaler and new generation F5 boxes.



The boxes do alright at low load levels. They do not have an asic tech like the F5s so choke on large amounts of traffic. Management is a bit immature and you will find yourself having to use the CLI and the Gui to accomplish most advanced tasks.

When we put them head to head A10 AX3200 vs F5 6400 ltm (note: 6400 was what we were looking to replace)

1000 concurrent users from Gomez's Networks Loadtesting platform hitting as fast as the requests would close, going through our standard vip config on the f5, and the A10 engineering teams 3 best efforts to beat that config that balanced between two Identical Dell 1950 servers serving a php page that responded with a random number (to avoid caching). The 6400 we used was in production at the time, and was older so we were expecting to get blown away, see the results here:

F5 - Peaked 160k completed transactions a minute sustained for 10 minutes, 0 errors, 112ms average transaction response time
A10 - Held 60k completed transactions a minute sustained for 10 minutes, 0 errors, 360ms average transaction response time

If anyone is interested in the graphs I think I can still pull them out of gomez. Though notable that this was all done a year ago, so things might be different now.


Very interesting to see about A10's performance- I've heard mixed things
about them.

Just an FYI, the newer F5 platforms don't utilize the ASIC's- the
performance curve of general-purpose CPU's has once again eclipsed what can
be done with specialized silicon without aggressive (and expensive) revision
cycles. The ASIC's also could only be used in simpler virtual server
configurations and with certain subsets of iRules.

That said, nothing else I'm aware of provides the functionality of iRules.
I've used netscalers only a relatively small amount- and they are nice-
particularly if your requirements are within their feature set- but my
experience has been that things I take for granted using an iRule are
seriously painful to implement on a netscaler.


Yes, agreed. I think the Netscaler falls into the category of the Cisco in this respect <ducks>. Seems the F5 gear is the 1000lb gorilla in this category and for the most part we have no reason to look anywhere else other than doing our own due diligence with respect to the other vendor offerings in this space.



the a10s actually do pretty good at relatively high load levels as well, and
they do have an asic(multiple), fyi..

That said, nothing else I'm aware of provides the functionality of iRules.

I'd argue that Zeus' TrafficScript is on par or better than iRules.


I'm a fan of F5 myself, but Zeus TrafficScript is a worthy contender.