Peribit Expands WAN Functionality

The company's new WAN optimization products offer support for greater WAN speeds and new disks for data mirroring.

Peribit Networks Inc. continues to pack its WAN optimization product line with new features and hardware options to bring wider functionality to the growing market.

With market researchers predicting growth rates for WAN optimization of at least 16 percent and a rise in revenue from $236 million this year to $427 million by 2008, Peribit and its competitors are moving quickly to expand beyond plain compression to add support for quality of service, business policy integration, reduced TCP and applications chatter, and application management, according to Stephen Elliot, an analyst at IDC in Framingham, Mass.

/zimages/4/28571.gifClick here to read about how a Vermont hospital reaped the benefits of WAN optimization.

Santa Clara, Calif.-based Peribit, which turned profitable last quarter and is planning an IPO for next spring, this week added support for greater WAN speeds, new disks for data mirroring and updated software that allows for route optimization, forward error correction and a shortcut for TCP acknowledgements.

The new SR-100 hardware platform, intended to act as a hub in a hub-and-spoke topology, supports 155 M-bps OC-3 WAN speeds and as many as 2,000 remote sites. At the same time, Peribit added a new SM-500 (Sequence Mirror-500) hardware platform with two 250GB disks. The SM-500 is intended to support large file transfers between data centers.

"We realized big file transfers take an enormous amount of bandwidth. With a disk in the product, we cache everything thats already been sent so that were only sending the changes. Its a real breakthrough for data center-to-data center replication," said Peribit CEO Jef Graham.

With release 5.0 of its SRS (Sequence Reduction System) software, Peribit changed the products architecture to allow for smoother integration of new functions. As part of the release, Peribit added the ability to select paths for dual WAN links in a feature dubbed Policy-Based Multipath. The feature allows users employing an unused backup WAN link to selectively route lower-priority applications traffic across the secondary link.

"You can set a rule that sends low priority traffic on one pipe, high priority on another, and if there is a failure, use one for both and set prioritization if you see latency. We offer this for free in our existing unit, instead of having to pay a lot for it," said Graham.

"Multipath is fairly important to us," said Chip Greel, senior network architect at Finisar Corp., in Sunnyvale, Calif. "In our WAN we have private and public links. Pretty much all our traffic flows over the private links, with VPNs on public links for automatic failover. We want to run some of our traffic on those little-used VPN links to take advantage of the bandwidth we have."

Peribit also enhanced the SRS packet flow acceleration feature to include Active Flow Pipelining, which terminates a logical TCP connection for large file transfers to eliminate the large number of acknowledgements traversing a link. New forward correction capability in SRS 5.0 also minimizes the risk of retransmissions across higher latency links, such as satellite communications.

For managing configurations—especially for remote WAN optimization devices—Peribit added new automated deployment features that enable a device to obtain its IP address from a DHCP server, allowing connectivity to then remotely configure the device from a central location.

"I wish I had it for the last deployment," said Bill Pappas, vice president and chief technology officer at Dimon Inc., in Farmville, N.C. "In a lot of places we dont have IT people. As it is we pre-configure [the device] and send it out. With automated deployment, we wouldnt have to do that. It would make it that much easier."

The SR-100, available now, starts at $24,000. The SM-500, due next month, starts at $9,000. SRS 5.0 is available now.

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