|By Maureen O'Gara||
|May 5, 2009 04:00 PM EDT||
Citrix' NetScaler MPX hardware appliance - the application accelerator that Citrix claims is used by the biggest consumer web sites, touching 75% of all Internet users everyday - is going to get a low-end standards-based virtual counterpart.
The software-based virtual appliance is called NetScaler VPX and is meant to push NetScaler functionality down the food chain as well as into the cloud.
Citrix says it will be downloadable and will run on any standard server, enhancing the delivery of virtualized server and application resources. It will also be usable as a virtualized service in and of itself.
VPX is supposed to be a fundamentally different approach to the convergence of virtualization and networking than the usual proprietary hardware.
NetScaler functionality includes caching, security and compression that VPX can make deployable on a per-application basis.
Multiple NetScaler instances can run simultaneously on a single server in isolation from one another making it a cheap multi-tenant solution.
Citrix says that putting NetScaler MPX at the edge and VPX close to the app will create a centrally managed two-tier web application delivery fabric with MPX handling network-wide task such as SSL encryption and denial of service prevention.
VPX runs on Citrix' XenServer virtualization platform and its virtual images can be managed through the XenCenter management console. AppExpert templates will be available to deploy and configure applications like SharePoint.
VPX will be available as a public preview on May 18 with commercial release to follow sometime in Q3. No pricing till then.
Citrix is planning to introduce virtual versions of its Access Gateway secure remote access appliance and Branch Repeater appliance. The first will be out in the second half, the later will hit beta about then with commercialization in the first half of 2010.
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