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Lori MacVittie

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#IBMPureSystems #devops #cloud Optimizing and assuring availability of applications is critical to the success of any application architecturef5friday

This week IBM announced its next-generation platform, IBM PureSystems. IBM PureSystems comprise a fully integrated set of solutions that is managed through a single interface, providing a faster time to value by reducing system configuration time and simplifying system administration tasks.

It’s kind of like IBM’s version of devops in a box.

But like most integrated compute, network, and storage systems today designed for rapid provisioning and simplified management in what are the increasingly complex interconnected systems making up cloud computing, it needed a little something to make it even better: application delivery.

That’s where F5 comes in.

F5 brings its application delivery expertise to IBM PureSystems through a hybrid application delivery network (ADN) comprised of both virtual and hardware-hosted application delivery services. Together, F5 & IBM provide an integrated computing solution for consolidating IT by increasing application availability, adding security and efficiency of virtualized servers, storage and networks with unified management for application delivery for the enterprise and to the cloud.

ibm troy test

F5 Solutions: F5 BIG-IP LTM VE running on VMware on the IBM PureFlex System and BIG-IP product line front ending IBM PureFlex Systems to provide offload, optimization, disaster recovery and security.

In testing scenarios, both BIG-IP hardware and virtualized platforms enhance the service quality of IBM PureSystems and provide a high availability environment for an enterprise-class application — in this case IBM WebSphere® Application Server. Using both the hardware and virtual editions of BIG-IP products provide certain advantages in large environments:

· Hardware-based platforms can offload the IBM PureFlex Systems’ server node’s high-processor utilization tasks, such as encryption, compression, and increasing virtual machine (VM) density. It can also be used as a frontline defense from distributed denial of service and other attacks before they reach the application environment.

· The usage of the virtualized edition for individual applications, customers, or lines of business can provide greater control, granularity, and elasticity. Additional modules can then augment standard high availability, optimization, and security scenarios with single-sign on capability, application firewalling, web acceleration, and wide area network (WAN) optimization.

· Hardware and software work in tandem to create a single, unified platform for application delivery, high availability, optimization, and control for IBM PureSystems environments.

For example, the addition of F5 BIG-IP services to the IBM PureSystems architecture allowed the system to handle failures at all layers – whether it was the IBM PureFlex Systems’ node or the application server, whether it was a virtual instance of BIG-IP VE or the active physical BIG-IP LTM. Regardless of where the failure occurred, the systems dynamically compensate for failure and assure the highest availability possible within and across the systems. 

The advantages of deploying both hardware and virtual editions of BIG-IP products with IBM PureSystems include:

  • Offload encryption and compression onto hardware-based platforms to increase virtual machine (VM) density and improve performance.
  • Improve front-line security to defeat attacks before they reach the application environment.
  • Enhance control, granularity, and elasticity with a virtualized Application Delivery Controller (ADC) for individual applications, customers, or lines of business. 

Further enhancements include software modules providing single sign on capability, application firewalls, web acceleration, and WAN optimization. Hardware, virtual editions, and software work in tandem to deliver a unified, high-availability platform for application delivery, optimization, and control in IBM PureSystems environments.

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Lori MacVittie is responsible for education and evangelism of application services available across F5’s entire product suite. Her role includes authorship of technical materials and participation in a number of community-based forums and industry standards organizations, among other efforts. MacVittie has extensive programming experience as an application architect, as well as network and systems development and administration expertise. Prior to joining F5, MacVittie was an award-winning Senior Technology Editor at Network Computing Magazine, where she conducted product research and evaluation focused on integration with application and network architectures, and authored articles on a variety of topics aimed at IT professionals. Her most recent area of focus included SOA-related products and architectures. She holds a B.S. in Information and Computing Science from the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.