Wan acceleration

Anyone in the group using hardware based wan acceleration and have

If so, anyone using it over a static IPSEC Cisco VPN link (or other
I've seen a demo of Cisco WAAS and why they think it's best of breed.
Spoke to F5, theirs is still in beta so they suggested Riverbed. I've
been told that Riverbed (unlike Cisco) reverse engineers protocols to
allow for pass-through though, which worries me in case of failure.
Cisco on the other hand licenses the protocols from the various vendors.

Other vendors I'm looking at as possibilities are RocketConnect,
RadWare, BlueCoat, and Juniper.

My connectivity is a tier 2 Metro E at one site (policed at 90Mbps),
Tier 1 OC3 at other.

Reply to post, or off list.

Bill Lewis

May want to look into Citrix WanScaler. I wouldn't personally be the most knowledgeable on the product, but I can put you in touch with someone who is if you would like.


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I would certainly look at Riverbed. In my experience they make a product
that is just sensational. I could really go on and on about their product
but I'd come off sounding like an advertisement.

Juniper's WX is a good product also and worth a look. In my experience
people tend to go with the WAAS because it can be really cheap with the
right bundle.


I use WAN acceleration appliances to optimize traffic over satellite
links. Initially we used Blue Coats but due to some issues they have, or
had, with satellite links we replaced them with Riverbeds and now we have
over 100 of them deployed.

The Riverbed units have done a much better job and if there is a power
failure they fail open, as they use the fail-through NICs which have
always worked so far.



I don't have much to add to already said, other than, when I looked at Cisco
vs. Riverbed vs. BlueCoat - Riverbed came out as a winner for a few major
reasons. Can't recall all of them anymore, but the one I think still stands
today is that Cisco and BlueCoat optimize protocols and, I believe, mainly
CIFS and HTTP. Maybe some exchange stuff, and a few major ones.
RIverbed claimed (and seemed to be true when we deployed them) that they
don't optimize protocols. They optimize bit streams, which allows them to
optimize a far greater number of protocols than Cisco or BlueCoat. At that
company, we had a lot of home grown network apps, so that mattered.
We deployed them in a few sites that suffered the most, most of them metro
area, but one was in Europe (when HQs are in US). Complains stopped.

Also, I can't recall if we tested the failure at the time (I think we did
and it worked beautifully to open), but today I work for a different company
and we have WAAS. Recent failure showed that they don't quite fail the right
way. We had it respond to configuration changes, but somehow, it would mess
packets up. Only a restart saved the day.

So in short, I'd recommend Riverbed.