Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)

Array’s simple, scalable and highly-adaptable ADCs combine unmatched Layer-7 performance and agility with superior SSL scalability and cost-efficiency to create an application delivery solution ideal for SaaS and Web-scale application services.

 

Application Delivery for Software-as-a-Service

External-facing Web applications differ from internal enterprise applications; consequently, they place different demands on application delivery controllers. Whereas an internal IT team looks at the ability of an ADC to support a wide cross section of enterprise applications, a Software-as-a-Service provider DevOps team cares more about how ADCs can benefit one application or service.

Where enterprise IT may configure an application and not touch it for a year, SaaS providers need new features and continuous tuning in order to maintain a competitive edge. For enterprises with a stable user base, scalability means picking a right-sized solution; for a SaaS provider with a user base that is growing exponentially, scalability means selecting a solution that cost-effectively meets requirements both today and in the future. Importantly, SaaS providers also lead the way in adopting cloud principles for the purpose of automating network management.

  Software as a Service (SaaS)

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Internal IT (Enterprise Applications) External-Facing Web Apps (SaaS)
Number of Applications Hundreds of applications from multiple 3rd-party vendors used as workforce productivity tools One proprietary application or application suite built by a single company as a core product or solution
Frequency of Releases Yearly Continuous
Number of Users Hundreds or thousands Thousands or millions
Growth of Users Predictable Exponential
Network Management IT staff and/or professional services Cloud automation and orchestration
Return-on-Investment Important Essential

 

For SaaS providers and their DevOps, network planning and infrastructure teams, ADCs need to excel in the areas of scalability, adaptability, simplicity, manageability and price-performance. With Array, SaaS providers can leverage scalable SSL and Layer-7 performance to keep pace with growth, while relying on an adaptable architecture and Layer-7 policy engine to keep pace with continuous development.

 

Challenge

  • Scalability – As a SaaS provider, the business plan calls for outsized growth. ADCs selected for SaaS environments need to take into account future requirements, especially as they pertain to demanding networking tasks such as SSL encryption.
  • Adaptability – Developers sometimes operate in a vacuum, not understanding whether existing infrastructure is capable of supporting their latest creation. SaaS-optimized ADCs must be able to rapidly support new features at full performance.
  • Simplicity – There are no pre-existing deployment guides for proprietary SaaS applications. ADCs selected for SaaS environments must be capable of implementing necessary Layer-7 policies without the complexities of custom scripting.
  • Manageability – SaaS providers do not have the benefits (or burdens) of large IT departments. Management automation is becoming increasingly essential to controlling costs and rapidly adapting to changing application requirements.
  • Price-Performance – Supporting millions of users costs more than supporting thousands. ADCs that may be affordable at an enterprise scale may not be affordable in the Web-scale or hyper-scale world of SaaS providers.

Solution

  • Array ADCs provide superior Layer-7 and SSL scalability from the entry-level to the high-end. Array’s Layer-7 policy engine and SSL related features minimize reliance on scripting, ensuring that custom traffic management never impacts scalability.
  • Array's software-centric SpeedCore™ architecture does not rely on custom silicon; new application delivery features are rapidly adopted and deployed with full performance via commercially available multi-processing technology.
  • Array ADCs maintain an extensive library of Layer-7 policies that may be combined and nested via simple CLI or WebUI commands to enable custom functionality, without requiring time-consuming, complex and error prone scripting.
  • Array's eCloud™ API provides integration with the OpenStack load balancing-as-a-service (LBaaS) API and supports integration with VMware vCenter Orchestration (vCO), Microsoft System Center and proprietary cloud operating systems.
  • Array ADCs are between 30-40% less expensive and up to 75% more cost efficient for SSL TPS vs. alternative ADCs. Array's virtual ADCs enable pay-as-you-grow pricing that aligns costs in proportion to customer demand.

 

WAN Acceleration for Software-as-a-Service

Most often, a well-tuned application delivery architecture and a ubiquitous Internet connection will deliver a seamless end-user experience for cloud-based SaaS applications. That said, there are always exceptions. In some cases, whether due to distance, bandwidth constraints, high-volume traffic or other reasons, there may be a need to accelerate application performance. In these instances, Array's aCelera line of WAN Optimization Controllers is a perfect complement to our SaaS-optimized ADCs, giving SaaS providers the ability to deploy either physical or virtual appliances or mobile clients to the end-user to cost-effectively ensure a premium, high-performance experience.

Secure Access for Software-as-a-Service

For many enterprise customers, cloud services are a double-edged sword. Workers and IT departments alike benefit from fast and flexible access to productivity-enhancing services. On the other hand, IT can quickly become nervous at the thought of technology adoption that takes place outside of their purview. Without the ability to monitor who is using what applications when and where, and without the ability to track and control corporate data, businesses and their IT departments lose the ability to maintain compliance. In these instances, Array's AG Series Secure Access Gateways are a perfect complement to our SaaS-optimized ADCs, giving SaaS providers the ability to deploy either physical or virtual appliances to the end user to provide a central point of control through which to monitor and provide access to SaaS applications.

 

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