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F5 Helps Deliver Low Cost Cloud Services for Illinois School Districts

F5 Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV), the global leader in Application Delivery Networking, today announced that IlliniCloud, a non-profit cloud computing organization, has deployed F5® solutions to help deliver cost-effective cloud services for public and private schools in Illinois.

Formed in 2007, IlliniCloud provides cloud services that help Illinois schools run critical applications ranging from school administration and disaster recovery services to student performance tracking and video hosting. Because it is a non-profit organization, IlliniCloud can focus on delivering low cost services to schools. Its use of F5 solutions has reduced application delivery services costs for school districts by as much as 70 percent compared to the cost of providing capabilities in-house, and has cut their need for expensive Tier 1 storage by as much as 85 percent.

Building a cloud environment that can scale to meet the needs of 860 public school districts (as well as any private or parochial schools choosing to participate) required capable, cost effective management tools. That’s why IlliniCloud turned to F5® solutions, including BIG-IP®products for application delivery services and server load balancing, and ARX® products to virtualize storage resources and provide policy-based file management for added efficiency.

“The BIG-IP devices provide the server redundancy we need, and they have been very easy to set up, maintain, and support,” said Jason Radford, System Administrator of the Bloomington, Illinois school district where one of the IlliniCloud data centers is located. “And ARX provides such cost savings, I wouldn’t run a data center without it. It’s allowed us to really hold down storage costs by automatically moving files to lower cost storage tiers as the data ages or otherwise becomes less critical.”

IlliniCloud’s infrastructure as a service (IaaS) solution runs dozens of specialty applications for school districts. Districts use IlliniCloud’s software as a service (SaaS) capabilities to run email as well as data collection, retention, and analysis applications to track student performance and perform other academic and administrative services. The organization’s backup and data storage services have helped school districts address data growth of up to 200 percent per year, and its disaster recovery services now provide schools with reliable data protection and recovery capabilities.

As IlliniCloud continues to provide more services throughout Illinois’ 860 school districts, it hopes to expand its use of F5 solutions to provide statewide network load balancing, data optimization, and storage tiering capabilities. “IlliniCloud provides the unique opportunity to address many of the existing distinctions or funding inequalities between districts by providing low cost, vendor-neutral cloud services to any district that wants them,” added Radford. “With F5, we have a solution partner who can help us provide the highest level of services at the lowest cost, and who will be there with us for the long haul as our needs evolve.”

For more information about IlliniCloud, please visit http://www.illinicloud.org/.

Bloomington School District will be presenting its cloud strategy, including its use of F5 solutions, on Wednesday, December 8 at the Gartner Data Center Conference 2010 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. F5 Networks will also be exhibiting at the conference in Booth #44.

About the Gartner Data Center Conference 2010

The Gartner Data Center Conference is the most comprehensive compilation of sessions and advice on the future of the data center ever held. It offers the latest actionable insights and best practices in all areas affecting the data center—real-time infrastructure to servers and storage to business continuity and disaster recovery. Additional information is available at www.gartner.com/us/datacenter.

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 www.f5.com.

You can also follow @f5networks on Twitter or visit us Facebook for more information about F5, its partners, and technology. For a complete listing of F5 community sites, please visit www.f5.com/news-press-events/web-media/community.html.

F5, BIG-IP, and ARX 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.

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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.

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