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F5 Introduces Self-Service Support Capabilities and Diagnostic Tools

New iHealth service offers improved visibility into BIG-IP environments helping streamline support interactions, and ensure peak system performance

F5 Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV), the global leader in Application Delivery Networking (ADN), today announced the F5® iHealth™ system, an exclusive online support service available to F5 customers and partners designed to proactively improve the performance of application delivery infrastructures. iHealth is a web-based application that provides insight into BIG-IP® product deployments through performance monitoring and automated analysis. It empowers administrators to identify performance issues, access data for troubleshooting and remediation, and exchange information with F5 Support teams for analysis.

“With iHealth, customers and partners can take a comprehensive snapshot of their current infrastructure, and use it to proactively identify opportunities for performance improvement or preempt potential challenges,” said Julian Eames, SVP of Business Operations at F5. “This new offering represents F5’s continued commitment to exceeding customer and partner expectations for service excellence and providing an enhanced portfolio of self-service options for our extensive installed base.”

Details

Offered as a free web-based service for customers and partners with a current services maintenance agreement, iHealth comprehensively analyzes BIG-IP solution performance and provides recommendations for improving performance. After gathering configuration information, iHealth gives users a succinct description of identified issues along with F5’s recommendations for addressing them. This comprehensive analysis validates current product configurations against best practices, and displays heuristics data in an easy-to-understand format based on the familiar BIG-IP interface. In offering a proactive approach to troubleshooting, iHealth significantly decreases the time and effort necessary to diagnose and address technical issues.

Key benefits of the iHealth system include:

  • Self-Service Capabilities for Quick Remediation of Performance Issues
    Administrators can upload specific product configurations any time, aiding troubleshooting efforts on a flexible schedule. The iHealth service analyzes configuration and performance data, and prioritizes existing performance challenges. This automated capability leverages F5’s years of experience working with global organizations to provide convenient diagnostic and remediation information and offer detailed recommendations to address any issues. These recommendations also include links to the Ask F5™ Knowledge Base for detailed solutions and procedures.
  • Proactive Identification of Potential Application Delivery Challenges
    In addition to providing tips for addressing current challenges, iHealth offers detailed performance statistics and helps proactively identify potential trouble spots before they create issues.

    By taking a holistic view of the infrastructure, iHealth quickly identifies opportunities for performance improvement so action can be taken. It can also alert users to available upgrades that optimize performance and help assess the impact of industry or regulatory changes, such as the effect on SSL performance when migrating from 1024-bit keys to 2048-bit keys.

  • More Efficient Collaboration with F5 Support Professionals
    With iHealth, users have a convenient, accurate method for sharing deployment configuration data with F5 professionals, should opening a support case with F5 be necessary. iHealth’s ability to capture specific details of a particular deployment significantly reduces the chance of redundancy or human error in performing diagnostic tasks. iHealth can quickly gather all relevant information and provide a concise snapshot for support professionals to work with, helping improve interactions between F5 and its customers and partners, ultimately leading to a swifter resolution.

Supporting Quotes

“With the introduction of iHealth, F5 is expanding on its top-notch support capabilities,” said Stuart Lyons, Security Engineer at Human Kinetics. “Now, we can run self-diagnostics to proactively identify any application delivery issues—without needing to take systems offline or put a call in to the help desk. The iHealth interface is very intuitive, and we can view and track the capacity of our BIG-IP solutions over time, helping us be better prepared for future application deployments and other IT projects. iHealth goes far beyond what we’ve seen in the industry in terms of customer empowerment, and really demonstrates F5’s commitment to supporting its users with tools to maximize the value of Application Delivery Networking.”

“Early adoption of F5’s iHealth has been a real time-saver for Milestone Systems,” said Bruce Hampton, Director of Engineering at Milestone Systems. “Whether we’re using the iHealth Viewer to look at performance graphs and network statistics, or using iHealth Diagnostics to examine our software and configuration, it’s all here—displayed in an easy-to-read format. This complete view of a system gives us hard data about our BIG-IP system’s overall performance, letting us know when it’s operating outside normal limits. We can take immediate steps to improve performance and enforce best practices. This is a real productivity tool and will further enhance the customer experience when dealing with F5.”

“The growing range of intelligent networking devices in the application delivery infrastructure calls for equally sophisticated service offerings,” said Matt Healey, Research Manager for IDC. “Specifically, the ability to proactively offer performance data and prescriptive advice for improving performance has become critical for IT organizations. IDC believes that all networking vendors need to provide their customers with tools that empower administrators, network engineers, and architects, to get the most out of their IT investments.”

“As a leading international IT security solutions provider for numerous blue-chip companies, proactive and rapid customer service is critical to our success. iHealth gives our team the visibility we need to efficiently scale and maintain application delivery infrastructures,” said Charlotte Manley, Technical Support Center director for Integralis Global Services. “It displays at a glance how network conditions are impacting BIG-IP solutions’ performance, enabling swift remediation if any challenges are encountered. In addition to its diagnostic capabilities, iHealth provides information about upgrades that might be available for BIG-IP products, helping ensure that systems are always up to date. Simply put, iHealth enables our support teams to be more self-sufficient. And with its ability to quickly examine the deployment details, it enables our customers to be more proactive.”

Availability

iHealth services are now available worldwide at no charge for all F5 customers and partners with a current services maintenance agreement. iHealth services can be accessed directly at http://iHealth.f5.com.

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 on Facebook for more information about F5, its partners and technology. For a complete listing of F5 community sites, please visit
http://www.f5.com/news-press-events/web-media/community.html.

F5, Ask F5, BIG-IP, and iHealth 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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