Mantas for Successful Application Delivery Optimization

By CIOReview | Wednesday, July 6, 2016
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With the onset of modern outlook towards work culture, organizations have started using novel tactics and methodologies to accomplish their aspirations. These methodologies, which are used to fully functionalize the engagement of the software deployed by an organization to achieve its goals, account to Application Delivery Optimization. The technologies deployed to accomplish the end results can completely expedite business applications over conventional Wide Area Network (WAN) and assist enterprise IT to steer this evolving landscape.

Users of WAN always expect optimal WAN performance irrespective of where they are, who they are working with, and whatever platform they are using. However, many times, due to fluctuations in bandwidth, certain applications get coded and formulated in a way that limits its performance and efficiency over a long period of time, resulting in packet data loss and eventually affecting the data center of the organization. Transaction flows prove to be the junction between one organization's data center and many others, and large amounts of data have to be cloned within data centers and even between data centers and the cloud. It eventually come to light that not all applications are distance friendly or they are coded in a way that makes inefficient use of bandwidth.

Application Delivery Optimization (ADO) seeks to fix delivery problems without any focus toward fixing the applications or forcing end users to limit their options. ADO enhances the efficiency and agility of the network, and optimizes application performance, making sure that everyone achieves the desired performance.

The two major points that drive the whole focus of ADO are WAN optimization—including compression, acceleration, compression, deduplication, caching, traffic conditioning, and traffic shaping—and application delivery control, which includes server offload and  load balancing. Other ADO solutions include route optimization and WAN aggregation.

There are few aspects which should be taken into consideration to successfully perform application delivery optimization:

Understanding the Problem

It is often observed that the user complaints accounting to the performance problems are ambiguous. It implies, IT staff must monitor the peculiar patterns in complaints and scrutinize whether multiple apps or one particular app is flawed. It will act as a guiding force—critical information which can enable the staff to get hold of actual problem and solve them strategically. However, different impediments impacting the fix are—the protocol used by a client to connect with a server, which can lack in performance over the WAN (can be avoided by WAN optimization); overloading of servers handling multiple encrypted client sessions (application delivery controller enabled with encryption offload can be helpful); or slowing down of a particular function on the server side, which can be combated by counteraction in the network.

So understanding the problem is important to ensure that the apt solution is deployed to solve it efficiently with a surety quotient attached to it.          

Consideration of Diversified Options to Solve the Issues

Examine a wide spectrum of options covering in-house, appliance-based implementations, virtual application delivery optimization, and managed solutions capable of shifting the burden of appliance running to someone else, and cloud-based solutions that eliminate the appliances. Apart from these operations, the assessment and testing of solutions has to be ensured as well.

Evaluation of ADO Solutions with Conjugating Strategies

Although ADO situates itself at the junction of network, security, desktop and data center planning, it is critical to ensure that optimization decisions don’t forge adverse effects on other areas of the organization. For instance, if the company contemplates toward shifting to data center-hosted Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) within three years, it should expedite the delivery of desktop applications to branches.

Working across IT Storehouse

Letting the IT team select and implement the ADO solution constitutes to be an exemplary way to ensure that ongoing operations are also accounted, complementing the plans and architectures. The chosen method and solution will never fail to meet the company’s needs and expectations to the most probable quotient, if staff from data centers, desktop, security, and networks are working in coherence on delving into the need for ADO and identifying a solution.

Analyzing Application Delivery Optimization Solutions

The critical analogy of perceiving the problem and undertaking multiple solutions as trial, abides to have basic information for evaluating performance. So, consistent throughput in the affected branches, measured application performance and calculated loss and latency are the requisites.

Interestingly, ADO solutions can usually be put in ‘watch only’ mode that permits to use them as data converging engines to provide performance benchmarks against which the effects of compression, acceleration and other services can be measured. Cloud services can be collectively placed in a ‘try before you buy’ mode. Having this baseline lets one compare the disparity between the evaluated solutions and also the before and after performance of the solution.

Maintaining the constant evaluation of performance even after a solution is in place becomes the base of identification of degradation in the benefits provided, which happens as the traffic shifts over time. Evidently, the above mantras make Application Delivery Optimization a holistic and integrated approach encompassing a versatile set of services with malleable deployment options and a secured operational platform.