CacheFlowTakes Aim at E-C-ommerce

FRAMINGHAM (04/20/2000) - CacheFlow takes aim at e-commerce with caching operating systemLooking to give users an easier way to distribute Web content, Cache device maker CacheFlow last week debuted its latest CacheOS/s aimed at e-commerce applications.

CacheOS/s uses technology gleaned from CacheFlow's recently announced alliance with content distribution company Akamai. CacheOS/s features support for Akamai's "Akamaizer" software, which lets customers place popular content in key geographic regions on the Akamai network. The Akamaizer feature will for the first time let CacheOS/s users automate the placement of content based on policies set by a network professional.

The new operating system is a standalone software product separate from CacheFlow's existing CacheOS software and has specific features, such as those that allow content distribution, aimed at companies doing e-commerce. It builds on CacheFlow's CacheOS, which among other things lets network managers store content based on user requests for it.

The software also gives network managers the ability to place content on the network without re-coding the content -- a time-consuming process in some cases. That distributed content reaches people more quickly than if it came from a central Web server and can save money in long-distance network charges.

There are also other benefits beyond the Akamai network that users can take advantage of, say observers.

"A key advantage to using (CacheOS/s) is that you alleviate congestion across the firewall," says Peter Firstbrook, an analyst with the Meta Group consultancy in Stamford, Conn. "And because you are serving more content from the cache you don't need as many Web servers on the back end, which is another cost savings."

The operating system's features include the ability to notify network managers of potential denial-of-service attacks when the system detects data request floods.

CacheOS/s runs on cache devices that sit in front of a Web server farm, typically behind a Layer 4 switch. CacheOS/s is designed to deliver content that is considered static, such as graphics or text that do not change.

CacheOS/s is integrated with CacheFlow's appliances at no additional license charge and will be available on June 1. The CacheFlow Akamaizer feature lists for US$9,995 to $14,995, depending on configuration.


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