How do you ensure non-stop access to applications running on Converged Infrastructures?


Does your organization care for mission-critical application performance?  Do you cater to users who require constant access to desktops, applications and data irrespective of how and where they connect to the network from? Most importantly, are your applications powered by converged infrastructures that manage pools of Network, Compute and Storage as a pre-configured technology stack?  

Back in November, we successfully integrated F5 BIG-IP with VCE Vblock platforms and got certified with an operationally clean, running Vblock producing no errors or performance degradation. As described in my previous article, Vblock Ready certification allows our customers and channel partners to confidently combine BIG-IP Application delivery controllers with Vblock systems

When do you need non-stop application access ?


Let us take the Healthcare industry as an example, although the applicability should extend to other verticals that run mission-critical applications. Shared clinical workspace environments typically have a few common images deployed, however is used by large diverse teams of care providers accessing concurrently. Lack of continuous uptime for such workspace services could turn in to a matter of life or death very easily. So it goes without saying that clinicians expect, not just hope, to receive continuous application access and uptime.

Okay, you get the idea that certain class of applications need to be enabled with non-stop access. That sounds like basic high availability or built-in redundancy for compute resources doesn’t it?  Well, not exactly.

F5 BIG IP as the platform for secure and continuous access to applications


What happens to the User access if the data center site hosting the Vblock™ goes down ? And how do you ensure secure access when you allow users to connect from remote locations over the internet ?  

AlwaysOn Point of Care Workspace solution from VCE and Vmware is a managed network connectivity solution optimized for the specific, stringent requirements of medical organizations. F5 BIG-IP Application Delivery Controllers can play a crucial role in the AlwaysOn deployments.



The dynamic load balancing capabilities of BIG-IP LTM allow new application instances in the AlwaysON architecture to be deployed with agility and transparency. While F5 BIG-IP LTM provides feature rich traffic management within a VCE Vblock™ in a data center, the BIG-IP GTM manages application traffic across multiple data center sites, ensuring that user traffic is always directed to the optimally available Vmware Horizon View connection server. BIG-IP APM provides secure remote user access management with FIPS-complaint SSL VPN and single sign-on capabilities (interoperable with third party authentication systems that may be needed for biometric security, in some cases). In addition, BIG-IP LTM and BIG-IP GTM components of the solution can automate the failover of live application instances between data center sites to minimize application downtime and enable a proactive disaster response.

And here comes the very best part. F5 offers the ability to create application specific iApps to generate, share and rapidly deploy configurations on the BIG-IP platforms. You can imagine how much value in terms of the time to provision this can translate to when you are running a mission-critical application

To learn further


Please check out the latest F5 with AlwaysON Vblock solution architecture paper. I also encourage you to attend our latest webinar to learn how F5 BIG-IP adds value for ensuring that every end user has multiple paths to workspaces available at all times.

Published Mar 09, 2015
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