Are You Paying for Expensive ADC Features You May Never Need?

A10 Staff
May 25, 2017

A10 Networks Blog

You may not normally think of it this way, but buying a hardware-based ADC can be tricky business. That’s because whatever you’re buying today is typically meant to last for the next five to six years. So if you buy for today’s needs, you limit your growth potential. If, on the other hand, you plan for all sorts of potential future needs, you’re likely paying way more than you need to, and oftentimes for features you’ll never end up needing.

So in a sense, you’re making a huge gamble by spending your current limited budget on what you think your network needs might be six years from now. Whether those needs ever come to fruition or not, your budget is already gone. And what if you end up having additional needs that you didn’t count on? For example, did you know five years ago that you’d be moving some of your app workloads to the cloud? Or that you would need to use your ADC as an SSL termination point to offload CPU-intensive encryption and decryption tasks from your web server?

The problem is, some ADC vendors seem to be intent on selling you the biggest box possible to maximize their deal size, rather than delivering a flexible solution that truly fits your specific needs. In fact, market leaders such as F5 have built their business around locking customers into a particular box and license. In these complicated licensing schemes, not all features are supported on all hardware models; in fact, most of the advanced features you want are only supported on higher end models with a corresponding higher end price point. Oh, and by the way, those features are also only available with a higher end license. So to review, you end up buying a bigger, more expensive box and a bigger, more expensive license, for a feature you might need. And if new standards emerge that weren’t supported by the hardware appliance when you made your initial purchase? No problem, they’ll sell you another new appliance to handle that. I’m pretty sure your favorite casino would love a business model like that!

What you really want is to buy an appliance that is flexible, scalable, offers an all-inclusive license and delivers major features via software that can be delivered as a simple upgrade, rather than requiring a new hardware purchase. And for extra measure, it should include models that support modular capabilities so they can be added later. You know, later, like when you actually decide you need it. You probably also think that “cloud appliance” is an oxymoron; that a cloud-based ADC should actually be cloud-native and designed from the ground up, specifically to handle cloud workloads, not a piece of hardware that’s been retrofitted to accept a subset of those workloads, and is severely limited in its ability to scale.

The good news is that A10 completely agrees with you. Flexibility, scalability, modularity and simple licensing are at the very core of our beliefs. We don’t want to just help meet your current requirements; we understand that you need a solution that can grow to meet your emerging needs, even if you don’t yet know what they are.

Learn more about how A10 can help you, today and in the future, while saving you from gambling away your life savings (OK, at least your annual budget) with big, inflexible appliances and expensive, complex licensing schemes.

A10 Staff
May 25, 2017

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