Silver Peak offers pay-as-you-go WAN optimisation

WAN acceleration

WAN optimisation specialist Silver Peak Systems has announced a software development kit (SDK), an application programming interface (API) and new pricing schemes for the VX software-only version of its technology.

Silver Peak said this would make it easier to build WAN optimisation into other platforms or offer it as a service, and that Avaya has already integrated the software into branch office routers.

The vendor's software performs a variety of tasks to overcome WAN challenges such as limited bandwidth, packet loss and latency.

Silver Peak claimed its new Virtual Acceleration Open Architecture (VXOA) would make it easier to customise and deploy, and allow for tight integration with third-party hardware, including standalone servers, blades, storage arrays, and routers.

Although virtual WAN optimisation has been around from multiple vendors for several years, David Hughes, Silver Peak's founder and chief technology officer (CTO), said hardware appliances have remained popular.

"Datacentre people are virtualisation-experienced, but networking people aren't so far down the virtualisation route," he said.

He said while the performance of the underlying hardware is crucial at the high end of the market so hardware appliances still have the advantage for tasks such as data centre replication, for example lower down the scale it is the software that is the limiting factor, as it is "constrained to the performance you paid for."

One of the new pricing schemes, called Investment Protection, therefore allows customers to pay only the difference in license costs when upgrading from a smaller VX to a larger one.

"The real saving with virtualisation is on deployment it means there is no need to move anything physical or plug in a device" he added, saying that this would make it more cost-effective to deploy across both public and private networks.

"It also brings new ways to do redundancy, such as vMotion, and it enables different pricing models, especially in MSP [managed service provision]."

In particular, subscription-based pricing - a one-year VX subscription costs from $1,600 (990), including maintenance - allows customers to shift the cost from capital expenditure to operating expense, Hughes noted.