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Speed Up Existing Applications with F5 Networks' New BIG-IP Application Accelerator

New and proven capabilities improve performance of Siebel eBusiness Suite Call Center by 126%, BEA's Weblogic Portal v8.1 by 121%, Microsoft's Sharepoint Portal Services 2003 by 125%, and Microsoft's IIS v6.0 by 70%

F5 Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV), the global leader in Application Traffic Management, today introduced performance-leading application acceleration and optimization capabilities designed to speed end-to-end user performance over the WAN and significantly reduce organizations' IT infrastructure costs. F5's new BIG-IP® Application Accelerator 3400 combines award-winning server and application offload technology with a broad array of new client acceleration and bandwidth optimization capabilities.

The BIG-IP Application Accelerator product provides a targeted solution that increases end user performance up to five times and integrates with any Layer 4/7 traffic management product. F5 is also introducing a unique WAN optimization feature set called TCP Express, which is now an integral component of its core Traffic Management Operating System (TM/OS). A state-of-the-art TCP stack that provides a clientless approach for WAN optimization, TCP Express delivers up to 80% performance improvement to users and up to four times improvement in bandwidth efficiency. Unlike other solutions, TCP Express provides a centralized standards-based solution that requires no installation within branch offices or remote browsers. This exclusive feature set helps enterprises achieve higher performance, mitigate WAN-induced errors, and increase their bandwidth efficiency for their existing infrastructure--without costly changes to the client or within the infrastructure. Today's announcement also marks the availability of the industry's most advanced and flexible caching capabilities. F5's new Fast Cache feature set is the only one in the industry that enables customers to define specific caching policies per business application.

"Application availability and fast response times are of paramount importance to us as we have a large number of customers utilizing our services in over 200 countries," said Kamal Jain, Director, Service Operations at BrassRing. "F5's new TCP Express feature set and the BIG-IP Application Accelerator provide a win-win for BrassRing and our customers. It will enhance our users' application experience and speed downloads, without having to change anything on our clients. A completely transparent solution is an absolute requirement for our business. We can't afford the cost, complexity and intrusiveness of deploying extra boxes or pushing agents down to browsers in order to speed up our applications."

Unlike other companies providing application acceleration technologies, F5 is the first company that has completed real-world testing, which looked at full application transactions. Utilizing Gomez, an independent Internet testing service that measures end-to-end WAN transactions and true client performance, over 2,000 tests were performed for each application to show average performance results for clients around the world. The Gomez results revealed that the BIG-IP product's acceleration features significantly reduced average end-to-end client response times across all applications tested. A sampling of some of the results include: Siebel eBusiness Suite Call Center (126% performance improvement), BEA's Weblogic Portal v8.1 (121% performance improvement), Microsoft's Sharepoint Portal Services 2003 (125% performance improvement), and Microsoft's IIS v6.0 (70% performance improvement) and Outlook Web Access 2003 (55% performance improvement).

"F5 has a longstanding reputation of making enterprise applications a priority and recognizing the importance of helping customers optimize this significant investment," said Cindy Borovick, Director, Data Center Networks at IDC. "F5's new application acceleration capabilities take the flexibility of its Traffic Management Operating System to the next level by introducing more specific ways to manage and control enterprise applications."

Highlights of the new BIG-IP product and software modules include:

New BIG-IP Application Accelerator 3400 packages all of F5's award-winning acceleration technologies into a single, cost-effective system. The product increases client and page download performance up to 5 times, extends bandwidth efficiency by up to 400%, and dramatically offloads server processing. BIG-IP Application Accelerator seamlessly integrates with any L4-L7 traffic management solution.

New "TCP Express" feature set provides 3x the efficiency in utilizing bandwidth links and up to 3x client performance improvement. TCP Express, an industry first, is integrated into F5's Traffic Management Operating System (TM/OS). Unlike packet-based architectures, F5's TM/OS operating system and intelligent full TCP proxy delivers dramatic real-world WAN optimization and client performance improvements, optimizing on behalf of legacy OSs and applications that may not be designed to cope with the WAN environment.

New "Fast Cache" Module delivers up to a 9x boost in server capacity. BIG-IP's intelligent caching functionality provides tremendous scalability and cost savings by offloading repetitive traffic from web and application servers. By offloading server request through F5's new caching capabilities, BIG-IP's Fast Cache can offload up to 98% of hit requests to boost server capacity by 9 times. Fast Cache is also the industry's only integrated cache whose policies can be fine-tuned for each and every application type, providing the kind of flexibility that any organization will need.

Pricing and Availability

All the new BIG-IP acceleration products and features are available today.

The BIG-IP Application Acceleration 3400 - The new switch has a U.S. list price starting at $26,995 and comes standard with all WAN, LAN, server and application optimization features, including:

  • TCP Express and Fast Cache features
  • Award winning SSL acceleration, TCP connection offload, and Layer 7 bandwidth management
  • Intelligent compression, server buffering and certificate management capabilities

The product does not include load balancing.

New features available across BIG-IP product line:

  • TCP Express is enabled by F5's TM/OS architecture and is included with the BIG-IP v9 product line. All BIG-IP v9 customers on current maintenance contracts are entitled to receive this upgrade. TCP Express runs on all BIG-IP platforms and across all BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager products.
  • Fast Cache can be purchased as an add-on module on BIG-IP and starts at U.S. list $4,995. It also comes standard on the BIG-IP Application Accelerator 3400.

About F5 Networks

F5 enables organizations to successfully deliver business-critical applications and gives them the greatest level of agility to stay ahead of growing business demands. As the pioneer and global leader in Application Traffic Management, F5 continues to lead the industry by driving more intelligence into the network to deliver advanced application agility. F5 products ensure the secure and optimized delivery of applications to any user - anywhere. Through its flexible and cohesive architecture, F5 delivers unmatched value by dramatically improving the way organizations serve their employees, customers and constituents, while lowering operational costs. Over 9,000 organizations and service providers worldwide trust F5 to keep their businesses running. The company is headquartered in Seattle, Washington with offices worldwide. For more information go to

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