Silver Peak Accelerates Virtual WAN Optimization

Virtual doesn’t mean slow.

WAN optimization vendor Silver Peak this week announced its latest virtual WAN optimization technology – a new solution that can deliver as much as 1 Gbps of WAN throughput. The new VRX-8 is built on top of Silver Peak Virtual Acceleration Open Architecture (VXOA) that was officially announced last month.

“The VRX-8 is a gigabit class WAN optimization appliance and it’s unique in the industry,” Rick Tinsley, president and CEO of Silver Peak told “To put it into perspective, the highest performance virtual WAN optimization appliance from any of our competitors is a 50 megabit product, this is a gigabit product, so it has twenty times more capacity.”

Tinsley added that Silver Peak also increased the flow count on the device to 256,000. The VRX-8 is able to support the VMware, Xen and KVM hypervisors. Currently Silver Peak does not support Microsoft’s Hyper-V, due to what Tinsely referred to as, ‘performance limitations’.

In terms of understanding how much data the VRX-8 can handle, Tinsley explained that the raw amount of data coming in might be significantly more than just 1 gigabit.

“It could be the case where we’re taking in a gigabit of LAN side capacity and de-duplicating that down to maybe five to one or in some cases ten to one compression ratio,” Tinsley said. “It’s a gigabit of aggregate capacity in and out.”

With a flow count of 256,000 simultaneous sessions, the VRX-8 has the same amount of flow capacity as Silver Peak’s high-end physical devices like the NX-10K.

In order to deliver full performance the VRX-8 has minimum requirements that need to be met on the host side. Tinsley noted that the VRX-8 requires eight CPUs while lower end virtual appliances from Silver Peak can work with two or four CPU configurations.

As part of the Silver Peak VXOA effort, the virtual WAN optimization technology is being baked into solutions from other vendors that embed the technology.

“EMC is looking to integrate virtual WAN optimization into some of their products and we’re having the same discussions with a number of large storage vendors,” Tinsley said. “A lot of the discussions are specifically around the VRX-8 as that is the product that will typically be used for high-end data center replication.” 

“That’s the product that would most likely be integrated with major storage partner’s storage array or with their replication products,” Tinsely added.

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at, the news service of, the network for technology professionals.

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