Balancing the Web Server Load
Hardware- and software-based systems compete on much more than raw performance numbers.Server load balancers have become a critical infrastructure component for ensuring optimal performance of large Internet or intranet sites. Raw performance numbers are a useful comparison metric, but load balancing and management features and the ability of a system to integrate with different Web infrastructure components should play a more important role when choosing the best solution for the job. eWeek Labs tested two server load balancers that illustrate some of these differences and how hardware- and software-based systems compare: Radware Inc.s hardware-based Web Server Director Pro 7.10 and the software-based Zeus Load Balancer 1.3 from Zeus Technology Inc.
Hardware-based products usually come in the form of a ready-to-deploy appliance, switch or router and are optimized for the task of load balancing.