NetScaler releases traffic management solutions

In an attempt to help companies realize greater returns on their existing network infrastructures, NetScaler Inc., the Santa Clara, California-based traffic management company, on Monday launched its Request Switch 6000 series of products, which are designed to support high-density Web site traffic flows by analyzing incoming data at the request level.

The new line consists of four traffic management devices:

- The RS6100 High Performance Traffic Manager supports up to 400,000 concurrent connections and 8,000 requests per second at 100Mbps speeds.

- The RS6300 Content Intelligent Traffic Controller offers content switching and cache redirection services.

- The RS6500 High Capacity Traffic Controller supports up to 1 million concurrent connections and 60,000 requests per second at 1,000Mbps, using a 1GHz CPU (central processing unit).

- The RS6600 SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Accelerator, a security device, supports up to 6,000 concurrent connections and 600 SSL transactions per second.

The devices have been built to intelligently handle excess loads, according to Patrick Conte, NetScaler's executive vice president of sales and marketing.

"With a traditional traffic management solution, if a flood comes in, all it does is serve the requests faster and overload the servers even faster," Conte said. "We regulate the flow and queue the requests so that we take the servers to their maximum capacity, but never over. So the site stays up and running."

Moreover, if content delivery is delayed, the NetScaler system can notify individual users as to expected delay durations and alternate content can be served to retain visitors.

"That keeps them on the site and engaged in the site longer," Conte said.

At the core of NetScaler's products is the company's Request Switching technology, which examines data at the request level, rather than the connection level. That approach separates each application request and response flow from the transport mechanism, thereby streamlining the use of transport protocols and resources. As a result, companies can handle more users, provide faster responses, and realize greater availability, Conte said.

"Request Switching looks at Internet traffic at the most granular, atomic level - the lowest level of granularity," Conte explained. "Most of the existing traffic management solutions on the market today look at the end-to-end connection level, but we look at the request-response level. That allows us to design products that shape traffic in a much more efficient fashion. We can upgrade performance by 400 to 500 percent."

"You can think of Request Switching as an engine that sits between the application and the transport protocol, as well as between the users and the servers, optimizing request response flows," added Prabakar Sundarijan, NetScaler's chief technology officer (CTO). "The protocols that were designed 30-40 years ago were not designed with today's applications in mind. So we tried to efficiently use those protocols for today's applications, and efficiently get responses back from servers to users on the client side."

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