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Cloud-native app traffic management and security

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/Omelchenko)

The drive for agility is fuelling key transformations, including the move to cloud, in IT processes and organisations in the enterprise. Application development teams demand it, which is putting immense pressure on infrastructure teams to deliver. At the same time, the shift to DevOps processes is empowering teams to deploy applications much more quickly, often several times a day; and they’re looking to leverage new architectures based on microservices and containers to deploy and deliver those apps even faster. 

As IT and enterprises embrace these new app-centric operations, they strive to find ways to leverage their traditional data centres and existing investments while taking advantage of the cloud to achieve these new levels of agility and speed.

Next-generation app delivery

This makes it even more of an imperative to optimise application delivery and security, regardless of where applications run, whether that’s in public, private or hybrid clouds. And these next-generation application architectures must elegantly integrate not only with microservice and container based architectures, but with increasingly popular DevOps tools and processes, like Ansible, Chef, Jenkins and Puppet.

Traditionally, application architectures leveraged monolithic development processes, were deployed in a physical data centre, relied on IT-led operations and were built around hardware appliances. This new method embraces development and deployment of cloud-native applications and multi-cloud environments while taking advantage of agile and self-service practices built on a consumption model.

And this new approach is working

Look no further than household names like Netflix, Airbnb and Uber, and you’ll see companies that have taken application agility to the next level, and are now currently reaping its benefits. These new methods are a major departure from the current state of application delivery, which tends to rely solely on either hardware, open source solutions or load balancing offered by cloud providers, each of which, when used individually, often fall short of delivering the level of agility modern application teams desire.

So, what are organisations supposed to do? 

Application teams crave agility, and IT teams want to deliver that agility through infrastructure that’s secure and easy to manage and control, while also laying the foundations to eventually move more of their applications to the cloud. Yet traditional models fall short in their ability to deliver the auto-scale, visibility and analytics, centralised management, self-service, security and multi-cloud capabilities that modern application teams are now demanding.

This is where a cloud-native application delivery service that is designed to boost security and delivery of applications across both traditional on-premises and cloud environments can come in.  In fact, here at A10 Networks we have just launched our new Lightning Application Delivery Service (ADS) which does exactly this and provides the agility of the cloud while protecting exiting investments in on-premises hardware and data centre architecture.

Lightening ADS is a cloud-native, software-defined solution that can work in multi-cloud environments—public, private and hybrid— and can deliver integrated load-balancing, performance optimisation, application security and per-application analysis to increase operational agility and application performance. All of this combines to improve agility and simplicity while lowering costs.

Improved agility

Now our customers can enjoy the benefits of cloud-native secure application delivery services. For example, a major US-based financial services company sought to de-risk migration from an on-premises data centre to a public cloud IaaS infrastructure. With our cloud native solution, this financial organisation was able to implement centralised per-app policies and visibility across clouds while reducing its CapEx and OpEx costs compared to legacy data centre ADCs. The IT team was able to provide the app team increased agility through the per-tenant policy controls.

A purpose-built application solution for the cloud, like Lightening ADS, can support traditional applications and modern architectures like microservices and containers. And it accelerates and secures applications to support the advanced delivery, security, orchestration, management and control that modern application teams crave. So, now as IT teams look to embrace new app-centric operations, this provides a way of leveraging both their traditional infrastructure while taking advantage of the cloud to achieve these new levels of agility and speed.

Duncan Hughes, Systems Engineering Director, EMEA, A10 Networks
Image source: Shutterstock/Omelchenko

Duncan Hughes
Duncan Hughes has 25 years’ experience in the field of advanced communication systems including data centre, virtualisation, security and application delivery. Duncan joined A10 Networks in 2013 from UK start-up Gnodal, prior to that he spent some 10 years as the Pre-Sales Manager at Foundry Networks which was acquired by Brocade in 2008.