Networking logic isn't rocket science, any more

F5 Networks has launched its LineRate product line in what is detailed as the firm’s “first ever software offering”…

… although this may be a misnomer in some senses, as F5 Application Delivery Controllers are naturally built with management software to perform tasks such as rate shaping and load balancing between the firewall and the application servers inside a datacentre.

Networking logic made easy?

LineRate application proxy software runs on commodity hardware or virtual machines and promises to eliminate the need for DevOps to manually set up complex proxies or incorporate networking logic into applications.

F5 says that this advancement should free up the DevOps team to focus on core business logic and develop new value-added product capabilities.

If LineRate does indeed make complex networking functionality easier to build, the DevOps team may be better placed to solve complex problems such as:

• steering and transforming XML/SOAP messages in the network

• improving application testing by replicating real production traffic to their staging environment

• API metering and centralised authentication

According to F5, solutions like these are easy for developers to create with only a few lines of Node.js code deployed on LineRate.

NOTE: Node.js is a JavaScript framework that is regarded for its event-driven, asynchronous model and ability to scale, and it has tens of thousands of open source modules that run within its framework.

The NEXT network will be highly programmable

LineRate is built to incorporate Node.js because generally accepted networking theory best practice agrees that next-generation architectures that require highly programmable proxies

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“We wanted to simplify difficult application-aware networking tasks so that developers can stay agile, both in their development practices and in rolling out new services. The LineRate product also lets them focus on the actual business logic rather than get bogged down by complex network-centric programming,” said Manish Vachharajani, senior architect and LineRate co-founder.