The wide area network optimization market is an area seeing a lot of use of virtual appliance technology. It has been on the top of the to-do list for many data center managers but it is an expensive undertaking. Lead analyst of Storage Switzerland, George Crump, says in an article presented on Information Week, that WAN Optimization is critical today, especially in storage as it seems that every storage system, backup application and failover application has the potential to replicate data between data centers. By optimizing utilization of the WAN you can either lower your WAN connectivity bill or at least delay the need to upgrade it.
“From a performance perspective most vendors are reporting results in the virtual versions of WAN Optimization that leads me to believe that performance between dedicated hardware and shared hosts is going to be a wash for many data centers. Even if you decide to dedicate a virtual host to just the WAN Optimization virtual appliance you still gain all the benefits of virtualization should you need them.”