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aFleX Advanced Scripting

Application delivery controllers (ADCs) have become an essential part of the network, ensuring applications are highly available, accelerated, and secure. ADCs provide a broad range of features and the management tools needed to meet advanced requirements.

Unfortunately, traditional load balancers lack the granularity to analyze and manipulate traffic at the application layer, for example Layer 7 load balancing (HTTP/HTTPS). Without programmatic control of application traffic, customers cannot address important use cases like transforming web content, bolstering security, or improving users’ web experience. While customers can still perform basic functions, they cannot realize the full potential of their ADC devices.

aFleX Custom Scripting Language for Layer 4-7 Traffic Management

While A10 places an extensive set of controls at customers’ fingertips with A10 Thunder® Application Delivery Controller (ADC) intuitive web user interface and industry-standard command line interface, frequently network operators need more; they need to examine, update, duplicate, or drop traffic and they require full control over the data stream.

aFleX, an advanced scripting language for A10 Thunder Series, provides the flexibility and power that network operators need to fully control their application traffic. aFleX is built on Tcl (Tool Command Language), an easy-to-learn scripting language; it also offers a set of extensions specifically designed for A10 products.

With aFleX, customers can create policies to inspect content–including request headers and payload – and perform any number of actions, such as blocking traffic, redirecting traffic, or modifying content.

Extend the Power of A10 Solutions with aFleX

aFleX offers granular control over application traffic, providing customers many benefits; some examples include:

  • Optimized high availability: With aFleX, customers can redirect end users to backup data centers if primary data centers are unavailable. Customers can also redirect users to custom error pages if the server is unresponsive.
  • Greater flexibility: Using simple aFleX rules, customers can redirect users from HTTP to HTTPS (SSL) applications, rewrite URLs, and forward specific clients to specific servers based on client attributes, such as browser accept-language.
  • More stringent security: aFleX scripts can be defined to cloak web server settings or to block specific clients based on client behavior or attributes.
  • Faster performance: By updating cache-control headers, aFleX can improve end users’ web experience by caching static content in users’ browsers

Because of the flexibility of the aFleX scripting language, customers can solve almost any type of application challenge with a few simple lines of script.

aFleX Potential Backed by a Community of Users

A10 Networks makes it easy to get started writing aFleX policies. A detailed aFleX reference guide describes aFleX syntax and commands and provides instructions for using the aFleX script editor and logging tools.

But sometimes it’s best to learn by example. A10 offers an online community portal, with a large user base where collaboration and discussion on aFleX policies can take place. Besides viewing examples of aFleX code, users can read tutorials and check out troubleshooting and optimization tips from our community site.

aFleX policies enable A10 customers to intercept, inspect, and modify traffic on the wire

aFleX policies enable A10 customers to intercept, inspect, and modify traffic on the wire.

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aFleX Scripting Language and Layer 7 Deep-packet Inspection

aFleX is a powerful and flexible scripting language that you can use to manage your traffic and provide enhanced benefits and services. It’s built into the Thunder® Application Delivery Controller (ADC), a high-performance load balancing solution that enables your applications to be highly secure, available, and accelerated.

Paul Nicholson
May 4, 2016

Paul Nicholson brings 24 years of experience working with Internet and security companies in the U.S. and U.K. In his current position, Nicholson is responsible for global product… Read More