Array Networks on a green streak

* Array Networks touts energy-efficient application delivery controller

The IT industry is keen on green as enterprise companies look for ways to cut back on energy consumption and cooling costs in the data center. Server vendors like Dell, HP and IBM are natural leaders in the effort to build more power-conscious gear, since servers often take up the most data center space. But they aren't the only vendors trying to help companies trim their energy bills. Array Networks is the first network optimization vendor that I've heard pitching a "green" application acceleration platform.

The IT industry is keen on green as enterprise companies look for ways to cut back on energy consumption and cooling costs in the data center. Server vendors like Dell, HP and IBM are natural leaders in the effort to build more power-conscious gear, since servers often take up the most data center space. But they aren't the only vendors trying to help companies trim their energy bills. Array Networks is the first network optimization vendor that I’ve heard pitching a “green” application acceleration platform.

Array Networks, of Milpitas, Calif., says its new AppVelocity series of application delivery controllers uses 60% less power than other products.

“It’s not just about how much power you consume, but also the efficiency at which you consume the power,” says Sunil Cherian, vice president of product marketing at Array Networks. “We are able to operate at a fairly consistent level of efficiency, regardless of how much power is being drawn from the line. That allows us to reduce our own power consumption significantly. If you look at the data sheets of competing products, we are a good 60% less,” Cherian says.

Getting there wasn’t easy, though. “We had to put new power supplies in and we had to design a new platform to take advantage of the new power supplies,” Cherian says.

In addition, since it offloads caching, connections and SSL processing from servers, the AppVelocity products can reduce server overhead by as much as 40%, which in turn translates into energy savings. Typical back-end servers might have dual CPUs, each requiring a 750-watt power supply -- compared to AppVelocity’s 102-watt consumption, Cherian says. By offloading processing chores to the AppVelocity platform, an enterprise can lighten the servers’ power consumption, he says.

Of course, energy efficiency isn’t the only characteristic of the AppVelocity line. The devices cut response time for enterprise applications by 50%, Cherian says. The 1U-size AppVelocity products can perform local and global load balancing at Layers 2-7 with compression, caching and TCP optimization. The APV platform also inspects encrypted data, performs SSL acceleration, and provides a full proxy-based firewall with stateful packet inspection. For more details, check out Array’s Web site

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