A start-up spun out of France Telecom thinks it will help network managers in the U.S. better manage WAN performance.Streamcore, which was acquired by BoostWorks in 2003, last week announced it had upgraded its StreamOptimizer 4.1 operating system with a behavioral acceleration engine. (Since acquiring Streamcore, BoostWorks has changed its name to ActivNetworks. Streamcore operates on its own, and its software and products fully integrate with wares from ActivNetworks' BoostWorks portfolio.)Streamcore says the behavioral acceleration engine will help customers improve application performance over the wide area. In fact, the company says tests show that Streamcore's appliances and software "improve response times in interactive data entry by an average 82%."The Application Behavior Based Acceleration (ABBA) engine adds intelligent application acceleration to Streamcore's products, the company says. The software is able to apply acceleration technology based on application traffic patterns and behavior in real time."We usually are called in by customers experiencing a performance problem with a specific application," says Eric Jeux, general manager at the France-based company, which this past summer established its U.S. headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif. "Customers want to be able to ensure a standard level of application performance quality across locations."Customers must install an appliance in the data center between the switch and the router and another appliance near the Internet access location. Customers may also need to install appliances in remote locations either to monitor WAN links on both sides or to enable compression features in the software embedded on the appliances. Appliances are installed at a "critical point in the data center," according to Jeux.Streamcore competes with the likes of Packeteer and Peribit Networks. Streamcore products are available now and can cost between about $2,000 up to $40,000 for the highest range.