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F5 and VMware Solution Yields 10x Improvement in Long Distance Live Migration Performance Using VMware VMotion

Tests confirm joint solution’s ability to quickly migrate virtual machines across data centers located thousands of miles apart

F5 Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV), the global leader in Application Delivery Networking (ADN), today announced deployment guidance and test results that illustrate and validate the value of deploying F5® and VMware solutions in concert to extend live migration capabilities across long distances for VMware vSphere 4 environments in a secure, accelerated manner.

Building on the previous announcement and demo at VMworld 2009, these test results confirm that organizations can securely migrate live, virtualized web applications - and their associated storage - between data centers thousands of miles apart without downtime or user disruption using F5® and VMware products available today.

The integrated solution enables organizations to rapidly respond to changing application and business requirements by seamlessly migrating live applications across geographically dispersed data centers.


VMware VMotion is deployed in production by a significant number of VMware customers to migrate virtual machines and data. The joint F5 and VMware solution helps solve latency, bandwidth, and packet-loss issues, which historically have prevented customers from performing live migrations between data centers. Long distance virtual machine migration across distributed data centers typically required the operator to halt online sessions, suspend the image, migrate the image to the new data center, and then bring the virtual machine back online at the new data center. This process could require significant downtime. Moreover, once the virtual machine was back online at the new data center, clients with previously established sessions would still be unable to access the migrated application until they received an updated DNS record aligning with the new location. This new solution mitigates the impact of migrating virtual machines across long distances - allowing live migration and automatic redirection of sessions - thus making the experience seamless to users.

A flexible Application Delivery Network is the fundamental component required to extend live migration capabilities beyond a single data center. There are two key ADN components to the new solution:

  • BIG-IP® WAN Optimization Module (WOM) secures and accelerates VMware VMotion and VMware Storage VMotion traffic up to 10x when compared to attempting long distance live migration without the solution—even over links that are subject to bandwidth, latency, or packet-loss issues. BIG-IP WOM encrypts and compresses data between BIG-IP devices, extending the effective distances of migrations and decreasing replication time for offline transfers.
  • BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) and BIG-IP Global Traffic Manager (GTM) enable local and global redirection of established and new web application sessions before and after the migration. This overcomes many of the networking hurdles that previously prevented organizations from migrating live applications between data centers.

Supporting Quotes

“VMware VMotion and Storage VMotion capabilities are significant differentiators for VMware vSphere,” said Parag Patel, Vice President, Alliances at VMware. “F5’s technology complements VMware solutions, making it possible to execute live workload migrations over greater distances. Combining VMware vSphere with BIG-IP® solutions expands the many use cases possible, and adds to the value we’re able to offer customers.”

“According to recent ESG research, increasing server virtualization usage is the top overall IT priority facing organizations over the next 12 to 18 months,” said Mark Bowker, Senior Analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group. “The mobility of virtual machines now provided by F5 and VMware will help companies distribute workloads across data centers, relocate applications closer to the end-user, and perform live data center migrations.”

“F5 and VMware are working closely to integrate Application Delivery Networking and virtualization with the goal of making our customers’ application infrastructures more resilient and responsive to business needs,” said Jim Ritchings, VP of Business Development at F5. “This joint solution frees applications from infrastructure constraints for maximum flexibility and business agility. We look forward to continued collaboration and innovation with VMware to address the growing demand for flexible virtualization solutions.”


F5’s step-by-step solution deployment guide for long distance live migrations performed with VMware VMotion can be downloaded from This resource includes general guidelines on expected performance gains and the types of applications best suited to long distance live migrations with VMware VMotion.

All products integrated within the joint solution are available today from F5 and VMware, respectively.

To learn more about how F5 and VMware solutions help customers virtualize their infrastructures and improve IT agility, please visit

About F5 Networks

F5 Networks is the global leader in Application Delivery Networking (ADN), focused on ensuring the secure, reliable, and fast delivery of applications. F5’s flexible architectural framework enables community-driven innovation that helps organizations enhance IT agility and dynamically deliver services that generate true business value. F5’s vision of unified application and data delivery offers customers an unprecedented level of choice in how they deploy ADN solutions. It redefines the management of application, server, storage, and network resources, streamlining application delivery and reducing costs. Global enterprise organizations, service and cloud providers, and Web 2.0 content providers trust F5 to keep their business moving forward. For more information, go to

F5, BIG-IP, Local Traffic Manager, LTM, Global Traffic Manager, GTM, WAN Optimization Module, and WOM are trademarks or service marks of F5 Networks, Inc., in the U.S. and other countries. All other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners. The use of the word “partner” or “partnership” does not imply a legal partnership relationship between F5 and any other company.

VMware, VMware VMotion and VMware vSphere are registered trademarks and/or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and/or other jurisdictions. All other marks and names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their respective companies. The use of the word “partner” or “partnership” does not imply a legal partnership relationship between VMware and any other company.

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This press release may contain forward looking statements relating to future events or future financial performance that involve risks and uncertainties. Such statements can be identified by terminology such as "may," "will," "should," "expects," "plans," "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "predicts," "potential," or "continue," or the negative of such terms or comparable terms. These statements are only predictions and actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these statements based upon a number of factors including those identified in the company's filings with the SEC.