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Riverbed unveils product direction for accelerating cloud environments for enterprises and government

Plans to Extend Existing Private Cloud Benefits of Market-Leading WAN Optimisation to Applications and Storage in Public Clouds
  • 16 December, 2009 12:44

<p>Riverbed Technology (NASDAQ: RVBD), the IT infrastructure performance company for networks, applications and storage, today announced its product direction for accelerating the cloud for enterprises and government. Building on its success in enabling organisations large and small to build private clouds, in 2010 Riverbed® will begin to introduce solutions that extend the benefits of acceleration to applications and storage in the public cloud. First among these will be virtual Steelhead® for the cloud, a new addition to Riverbed’s award-winning WAN optimisation product family. At its publicly Webcast cloud launch event in New York City, Riverbed demonstrated the benefits of its upcoming virtual appliance for the public cloud. In addition, Riverbed unveiled and demonstrated new technology for the acceleration of cloud storage. Participating in the event with Riverbed were Amazon, AT&amp;T, BT, IBM, Orange Business Services and Riverbed customer Lantmännen.</p>
<p>“For over five years we’ve delivered the market-leading solution for WAN optimisation that overcomes the performance barrier to successfully consolidating IT infrastructure into private clouds,” said Eric Wolford, senior vice president, marketing and business development at Riverbed. “These same performance issues also affect enterprises as they move to public clouds. With our forthcoming products we will help customers break the performance barrier for cloud applications and cloud storage, starting with virtual Steelhead for the cloud. We will help customers achieve the promised benefits of the public cloud, while ensuring the same high-performance access to applications and storage that they have come to expect from their Riverbed-accelerated private clouds.”</p>
<p>“The cloud" is emerging at the convergence of three major trends: service orientation, virtualisation and further consolidation of IT infrastructure. Leading analysts define the cloud based on three models, including private data centres or private clouds; public, shared services or public clouds; and hybrid or virtual private clouds, which allow large enterprises and governments to benefit from the cost and operational advantages of public clouds while still providing control over critical assets. Riverbed currently provides solutions for private clouds and has worked with many organisations to enable centralised and virtualised infrastructure. Companies that have built private clouds with Riverbed include Lantmännen, Rayonier, the Canadian Cancer Society, Constagny, Brook and Smith, and Simpson Strong-Tie.</p>
<p>Lantmännen, one of the largest food, energy and agricultural groups in the Nordic region, relies on Riverbed to ensure performance over private cloud infrastructure. “We are consolidating thousands of servers from hundreds of branch offices into two virtualised data centres. We selected Riverbed to ensure performance as we centralise applications, consolidate local servers and defer telecom spending across hundreds of sites. We expect to cut $6.5 million in overall IT infrastructure costs in one year, while improving overall IT infrastructure performance. Without Riverbed, it would have been impossible to roll out our private cloud initiatives without compromise.”</p>
<p>Riverbed has developed technology that will broaden its cloud offerings to help enterprise and public sector customers address the performance issues that will occur as they embrace adoption of private, public and hybrid cloud models and their users move further from their data.</p>
<p>“High latency alone will limit the types of applications that can find a home in the cloud,” said Steve Duplessie, founder and senior analyst at the Enterprise Strategy Group. “Forcing new interfaces or rewriting applications to take advantage of the cloud will be another deal breaker for a lot of folks. If Riverbed can solve these issues the way they did for applications and data transfers on the WAN, they will open up the entire market. If I can think of the cloud the way I think about a disk drive today, the possibilities become truly endless."</p>
<p>Speeding Application Performance
The award-winning Riverbed Steelhead product family offers organisations of all sizes acceleration of applications and data regardless of location, including remote offices, private data centres and mobile workers. Today, Riverbed demonstrated virtual Steelhead for the cloud, which extends the benefits of Riverbed WAN optimisation by accelerating the performance of applications and data transfers across private, public and hybrid cloud infrastructures. The demonstration included installation of the product in Amazon AWS.</p>
<p>“Riverbed’s new virtual Steelhead for the cloud will be an important piece for cloud computing architectures,” said Zeus Kerravala, senior vice president, Yankee Group. “The new solutions promise to overcome performance challenges, one of the key barriers to widespread cloud adoption.”</p>
<p>Accelerating Cloud Storage</p>
<p>Many enterprises and governments see migration of storage to the cloud as an attractive option for cost and operational reasons. Storage needs are exploding and CIOs would like to make storage growth “someone else’s problem.” However, concerns about performance, the need to rewrite applications, and fears about vendor lock-in could stall the movement of storage to the cloud.</p>
<p>“Cloud storage, while offering potential operational and cost benefits, has inherent latency issues,” said Joe Skorupa, Research Vice President at Gartner, Inc. “Users should take appropriate measures to ensure that either the type of data stored in the cloud can withstand latency issues or that measures are in place to overcome these concerns.”</p>
<p>Similar to how Riverbed addressed fundamental protocol inefficiencies for applications (used over the WAN) that resulted in order of magnitude performance gains, Riverbed unveiled at the event, advanced new technology that addresses fundamental protocol inefficiencies for block storage protocols that again produce order of magnitude performance gains over the WAN. What was deemed impossible before—running any block protocol over the WAN—was demonstrated to be possible. This new innovation enables thousands of miles of separation between storage and compute resources, transforming the WAN into a SAN (iSCSI).</p>
<p>“Our new technology will change the way enterprises and governments think about storage,” said Wolford. “No longer will storage have to be tethered locally to the server. This frees IT leaders to locate and move storage assets to sites anywhere in the world, even thousands of miles away, to deliver the most cost-effective and intelligent architectures. This capability allows enterprises to bridge the public cloud and the private cloud—allowing them to take advantage of the best of both worlds.”</p>
<p>Forward Looking Statements</p>
<p>This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements relating to the expected demand for Riverbed's products and services, statements of the plans, strategies and objectives of Riverbed management regarding future products and product plans, statements regarding the growth characteristics of, and customer demand relating to, the cloud market, statements regarding Riverbed’s ability to grow the cloud market, statements regarding performance results of Riverbed solutions and customer cost savings following implementation of Riverbed solutions that may suggest likely or certain outcomes, and statements relating to Riverbed’s ability to meet the needs of distributed organisations. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, as well as assumptions that, if they do not fully materialize or prove incorrect, could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. The risks and uncertainties that could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements include our ability to react to trends and challenges in our business and the markets in which we operate; our ability to anticipate market needs or develop new or enhanced products to meet those needs; the adoption rate of our products; our ability to establish and maintain successful relationships with our distribution partners; our ability to compete in our industry; fluctuations in demand, sales cycles and prices for our products and services; shortages or price fluctuations in our supply chain; our ability to protect our intellectual property rights; general political, economic and market conditions and events; and other risks and uncertainties described more fully in our documents filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. More information about these and other risks that may impact Riverbed’s business are set forth in our Form 10-Q filed with the SEC on October 30, 2009. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to us as of the date hereof, and we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements. Any future product, feature or related specification that may be referenced in this release are for information purposes only and are not commitments to deliver any technology or enhancement. Riverbed reserves the right to modify future product plans at any time.</p>
<p>About Riverbed</p>
<p>Riverbed Technology is the IT infrastructure performance company. The Riverbed family of wide area network (WAN) optimisation solutions liberates businesses from common IT constraints by increasing application performance, enabling consolidation, and providing enterprise-wide network and application visibility – all while eliminating the need to increase bandwidth, storage or servers. Thousands of companies with distributed operations use Riverbed to make their IT infrastructure faster, less expensive and more responsive. Additional information about Riverbed (NASDAQ: RVBD) is available at
Riverbed Technology, Riverbed, Steelhead, RiOS, Interceptor, Think Fast, the Riverbed logo, Mazu, Profiler and Cascade are trademarks or registered trademarks of Riverbed Technology, Inc. All other trademarks used or mentioned herein belong to their respective owners.</p>

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