Deciding on an appropriate application delivery controller (ADC) and evaluating the need for supporting infrastructure is a complex, complicated, and challenging job. Such challenges result from the fact that ADCs are increasingly used across diverse environments and virtual, cloud, and physical appliances.
Throughout the past four blogs in this series we have harkened back to some of the same key points. Today, we will recap.
In part one of this blog series we discussed how there is oftentimes a lack of knowledge when it comes to infrastructure technology and knowhow in the relevant DevOps teams. This is not what was intended when “Agile” moved from being a pure development approach to a whole technology management methodology, but it is where we find ourselves. One of the consequences we face because of this is that the traditional user of many technologies, the developers/application owners, know what functionality they should have but not where to get it.
Most businesses have multi-function printers that can fax, scan, and copy. In our roles, we are multi-functional as well. A network architect is often the operational troubleshooter because of his/her knowledge and expertise. The financial expert can take on the role of the supply logistics because of their understanding of the parts and processes involved in the day to day business.
In today’s world, digital transformation has changed how people interact with businesses and conduct their work. They interface with applications on the network. These applications need to be responsive and provide a quality of experience that enables people to appreciate the business and the services they provide. When an application degrades in performance, it negatively affects the user’s experience. This negative experience translates to lost value to revenues, brand, and worker productivity.
Many years ago, one of my customers had an internet-facing application. They positioned load balancers in front of the application to support the growing traffic load. Traffic to the website was growing so fast, that parts of the network infrastructure could not support the customer load.
If you are like most people and myself, you do not go into a bank and have a conversation with a teller when you make a deposit or withdrawal. You probably do not write paper checks and sign them. You have an app on your phone to access your bank account and use one of the thousands of automated teller machines (ATM), around the world to move money in and out of your accounts.
Businesses need to protect their assets when they are within their protective infrastructure AND when they are actively exposed or placed within the unprotected external world. The tools and procedures needed to protect the internal assets are different from the ones that protect the assets when they leave the confines of the secured network.
One of the responsibilities of the Key Master is to provide access to the sensitive and secure information hidden within the locked facilities. In my last post, I explained why the application delivery controller (ADC) is the Key Master for SSL/TLS communications on the internet. It is the responsibility of the ADC to manage and distribute the access to the different essential security services.
In the movies (and real life) one often needs to go through the Key Master to get to the destination. The job of the Key Master is to keep control of the access to the locks and barriers that protect important or sensitive material. Sometimes there is one key to get to the hidden rewards while other times, there is a long string of keys that must be maintained and managed. In other situations, the Key Master is more of a Key Maker, generating keys upon request.