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Freeing IT from location constraints

Westcon Imagine 2014 - It’s not rocket science. Businesses – and their applications and data – should be based where they need to be for their business.

It seems a simple enough premise, however Prasanna Gulasekharam, Country Manager, New Zealand for Riverbed Technology, says too often businesses have been constrained by technology.

The company, best known for its WAN optimisation tools, has been repositioning itself more strongly around location independent computing in recent years.

“Businesses should be where they need to be for their business to run well, and technology should work around you and give you the best experience,” Gulasekharam says.

“In the past, businesses have blended around technology, because technology hasn’t been able to cope with it. We are now able to empower them to do business where they should be doing it.

“Businesses need to be able to put their applications where it’s most appropriate for them, whether it’s getting it as-a-service, or putting it in someone else’s data centre or wherever.

“Putting applications where they should be is what is happening. Our philosophy and technology blends in to make that happen.”

But hosting applications and data in the most optimal locations does have issues.

Long distances and multiplying locations in the physical world cause latency, which slows down applications, and bandwidth limitation issues, which increase costs, affecting application performance and impacting collaboration and productivity, he says.

Application performance affects business, and location affects application performance.

For CIOs and IT managers, there’s a challenge too in gaining visibility and control of all the resources, including those shared with others in public clouds and those managed on-premises across often highly distributed enterprises and then optimising the experience for end-users.

“In the modern enterprise, nothing ever goes away. It’s like an archaeological dig, extracting data from the different layers of technology that have built up over time,” Riverbed says.

“Mainframes are still doing heavy lifting. The client-server layer, laid down in the ‘80s and ‘90s followed. Then the web layer started in the 90s. Now there’s SaaS delivered from public clouds, private clouds, hybrid clouds – and increasingly delivered to mobile devices.”

That creates islands of infrastructure, in data centres and the cloud through to in mobile devices.

Add the various permutations of applications on top of that.

Says Gulasekharam: “We have technologies that give you a visual of what the whole environment looks like, where the pain points are or where we could make things better, and then we have technologies to make things better, whether it’s load balancing across clouds or back through data centres, accelerating a particular part of the network, getting data to the cloud, all of that stuff.

“No longer is the data centre necessarily in a room within their organisation or at a Datacom. Some applications might be with Datacom, some might be best suited in Amazon. How do you decide? We give them a picture of what goes best, where and we give them the tools to do that.”

The Riverbed platform

Riverbed offers a complete platform for location-Independent computing, ensuring applications perform as expected, data is available when needed and performance issues are detected and fixed before end users even notice.

The Riverbed line-up includes:

SteelHead WAN optimisation which accelerates delivery of applications to the branch and from the cloud, and allows IT to prioritise mission-critical apps over the fastest networks.

SteelApp ADC to optimise secure and scalable delivery of applications from private or public clouds to users anywhere.

SteelFusion storage delivery to reduce TCO and expedite branch office backup, recovery and restore of applications and data after disasters or outages.

SteelCentral for performance management and centralised management.

SteelScript to facilitate programmability, interoperability and intelligence across the Riverbed platform.

SteelStore cloud storage applicance which integrates with existing backup and archiving infrastructure.

For more information visit