RE: [load balancing] best load balancer

From: Christaan de Vries <chris [izzat]>
Date: Fri Feb 17 2006 - 11:57:50 EST

I agree:...

Radware (amongst others) will not alow you to activate other firmware
without a support contract..

(Mind you, there is no mention of this fact in their upgrade procedures
on their website.. , so you can install the firmware, only rendering it
useless and then finding out you do not have the contract activated!)

(IMHO: If I purchase a device, I should be able to do anything with it
what I want!)

Christiaan de Vries
Apcare BV

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of
Daniel Peterson
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2006 3:45 PM
Subject: Re: [load balancing] best load balancer

Good Day All!

May want to add to the list:

Standard software and hardware support:

Some vendors only provide 90 day hw warranties and/or
certain licensing which needs to be renewed annually.


Dan Peterson

--- Iztok Umek <> wrote:

> On Fri, Feb 17, 2006, nevot <>
> said:
> > Hi all,
> > we are now going to change our old CSS 11154 from
> cisco, and I want to
> hear
> > your opinion about what are the best load
> balancers. We have two special
> > requisites, to know:
> > - transparent mode (will balance syslog-udp, among
> other protocols, so we
> > need to know the original IP)
> > - fault tolerant (redundancy)
> > - we are using currently for one of our services
> the sticky srcip feature
> > from cisco which mantains a session to a node
> during a specified time, not
> > balancing to other node if the timeout is not
> reached.
> >
> > What are your opinions?
> >
> > thank you all.
> These are basic requirements and just about any LP
> should do it.
> Things to ask:
> 1. What throughput do you need for the LB to
> support?
> 2. How good is health monitoring?
> 3. Is it a true network device or just glorified PC?
> 4. What is MTBF for it? (obviously we are talking
> about network device so
> you expect higher MTBF then your average)
> 5. Do you need Layer 7 capabilities?
> 6. Does it support VRRP (it is a network device
> after all), propriatery
> solutions can be tricky)?
> 7. Go with a vendor that can grow with your needs
> even with the smallest
> units. Some vendors have all these modules, but
> there is a hidden
> information that on the lowest end boxes they only
> support one or two
> modules out of many they claim you can use and even
> on their high end
> boxes they support 3-4 modules and require you to
> get extra boxes for
> extra functionality. (Due to performance issues as
> they are based on PC
> architecture.
> 8. Go with a vendor that doesn't hide their internal
> architecture of the
> devices and identifies major components of their
> appliances on the web.
> This way you know they don't have a need to hide
> things from you.
> 9. Buy what you need when you need. No need to buy
> expensive "all-in-one"
> boxes if you only need certain functionalities. As
> your needs grow beyond
> simple LB to SSL offloading, LBing security devices
> (such as IDS,
> anti-virus, anti-spam, firewalls ...), or load
> balancing your ISPs, your
> vendor can support your growth.
> 10. Remember, load balancing is good, however the
> whole deal is not just
> about availability and performance, it is also about
> security. Your LBs
> (either application LB or network LB or any other)
> are strategically
> positioned in the network, take advantage of it,
> pick a vendor you can
> upgrade (even if it is not the highest end box) with
> security modules,
> such as IPS (intrusion prevention), bandwidth
> management, and advanced
> denial of service protection.
> 11. Hacking LB is cool thing (various APIs to the
> devices nowadays) thing,
> but in reality, do you or does your boss want you to
> mess with this too
> much? It is your vendors (and their partners) job to
> give you the device
> that works and can make it work in your environment.
> If you need to crank
> your programmers skills to achieve the task of load
> balancing, then you
> are not doing your job, perhaps vendor is not doing
> theirs either. What
> will happen with your nice code when you upgrade?
> Will it blow up on you?
> Or when your contractor you hired for this task
> leaves? Who will maintain
> the code then?
> 12. I mentioned don't go with glorified PCs. Why?
> Security, security,
> security. Using public OS (Linux, FreeBSD or
> simmilar) is bad idea as it
> makes you open to certain security risks geared
> towards that OS. Another
> reason? Do you run (in an enterprise organization) a
> PC instead of solid
> state routers? I don't think so. So why would you
> put PC to do the job in
> LB space? After all it is a form of a router at the
> end.
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Received on Fri Feb 17 14:03:43 2006

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