SOURCE: Riverbed Technology

Riverbed Technology

February 01, 2012 09:00 ET

Riverbed Releases New Granite Product Family; Introduces New Architectural Approach to Achieve Complete IT Consolidation

Edge Virtual Server Infrastructure Extends the Boundaries of the Data Center to the Edge of the Enterprise

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - Feb 1, 2012) - Riverbed Technology (NASDAQ: RVBD), the IT performance company, today announced a new architectural approach called edge virtual server infrastructure (edge-VSI) that does for edge servers what virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) did for desktops: it allows IT to consolidate and manage all edge servers in the data center. But unlike VDI, edge-VSI does this while delivering 20-50% lower total cost of ownership (TCO). Riverbed® Granite™ is the revolutionary new product that enables edge-VSI. With Granite, global enterprises can achieve complete consolidation of edge applications, servers and storage to the data center, while delivering services to the edge of the enterprise as if they were local. Edge-VSI is complementary to wide area network (WAN) optimization, accelerating performance for applications and use cases not addressed by any WAN optimization approach today.

"We have offices across Asia, Europe and the United States and are pursuing a completely consolidated infrastructure to reduce our management requirements and lower our operating costs. Though we had centralized most of our IT infrastructure, we still had servers and storage in our remote locations," said Searl Tate, director of engineering, Paul Hastings. "Granite allows us to consolidate these remaining servers and storage and at the same time deliver the local application performance our remote employees demand. This complete consolidation model will reduce our total cost of ownership by a third, while reducing our risk profile and giving us the control we need."

Granite does what was previously thought impossible: it allows storage to be decoupled from its server over thousands of miles -- and actually work as if the storage were local to the server. The user gets uncompromised performance, while IT is able to manage, backup, provision, patch, expand, and protect the data for its far-flung enterprise all within the four walls of the data center. Organizations that deploy Granite are expected to save up to 50% over traditional approaches to managing distributed infrastructure by eliminating costly backup and recovery processes in remote locations, consolidating underutilized edge servers and storage, and cutting many of the general IT administration costs including travel associated with managing infrastructure at the edge.

Introducing Edge Virtual Server Infrastructure: Addressing Performance Beyond the Application Level
Thousands of organizations globally have benefitted by deploying WAN optimization for a variety of reasons: application acceleration, consolidation, bandwidth savings and business continuity/disaster recovery (BCDR). However, for many organizations committed to complete consolidation of global infrastructure, a few servers often remain in the branch. Granite was developed to allow organizations to remove those remaining servers and achieve complete consolidation.

"Traditionally, data centers and remote offices have been managed through separate operational processes, procedures and infrastructures," said Dave Russell, Research Vice President, Storage Technologies and Strategies, at Gartner. "In an ideal world, IT could leverage its investment in building the data center of the future by putting its IT infrastructure into one central data center, with its control, economies of scale, and security. However, with workers at large enterprises distributed across the globe, performance is a key challenge, especially for storage heavy workloads. To make this a reality, a new approach is needed that addresses these currently challenging workloads."

The demands of custom and write-intensive applications in the branch, the need to work with large data-sets that defy existing WAN optimization techniques and the concern of user productivity in the face of WAN outages have forced businesses to maintain costly storage and application servers at the edge of the enterprise, increasing IT footprint and introducing administration and infrastructure overhead.

Granite solves bandwidth and latency problems over distributed networks, but lower in the technology stack -- at the block level -- making it possible to deliver global storage and server infrastructure extended from the data center over the WAN. By adding file system intelligence to the block layer, it, among other things, parallelizes interactions between server and storage that were otherwise sequential. This innovation means that distributed data and servers can now reside in one place and the performance for users at the edge will not be impacted, all while eliminating up to 50% of the costs associated with managing distributed infrastructure.

Granite requires two components: Granite Core, a physical or virtual appliance in the data center, and Granite Edge, a service running on a Steelhead® EX in the branch office. By combining Steelhead EX + Granite, organizations can take advantage of greater consolidation and centralization with a powerful combination of WAN optimization, virtual services platform and innovative block-storage optimization. Alternatively, Granite Edge is available as a standalone appliance.

"Our employees often work on very large CAD files -- hundreds of megabytes -- which are difficult to share across the WAN. Since we've consolidated this data to a centralized data center, we thought performance would be an issue. However, Granite now allows us to store data in the data center, and project CAD documents from the data center storage over the WAN to local offices without impacting end user experience," said Mitchel Weinberger, IT manager at GeoEngineers. "The combination of Steelhead appliances and Granite allows us to eliminate physical hardware at the branch and the associated maintenance costs, solidify a disaster recovery strategy for the branches, and have backup processes run by system administrators."

"As we talk to our customers and ask them to whiteboard their ideal IT infrastructure they are highlighting the need to have centralized control of sprawled infrastructure. The evolution of virtualization and consolidation, along with Granite, is allowing organizations to achieve this dream," said Eric Wolford, executive vice president and GM, products at Riverbed.


Granite is now generally available.

Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements relating to the expected demand for Riverbed's products and services, statements regarding performance results of Riverbed solutions and customer cost savings resulting from implementation of Riverbed solutions that may suggest likely or certain outcomes, and statements relating to Riverbed's ability to meet the needs of distributed organizations. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, as well as assumptions that, if they do not fully materialize or prove incorrect, could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. The risks and uncertainties that could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements include our ability to react to trends and challenges in our business and the markets in which we operate; our ability to anticipate market needs or develop new or enhanced products to meet those needs; the adoption rate of our products; our ability to establish and maintain successful relationships with our distribution partners; our ability to compete in our industry; fluctuations in demand, sales cycles and prices for our products and services; shortages or price fluctuations in our supply chain; our ability to protect our intellectual property rights; general political, economic and market conditions and events; and other risks and uncertainties described more fully in our documents filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. More information about these and other risks that may impact Riverbed's business are set forth in our Form 10-Q filed with the SEC on October 28, 2011. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to us as of the date hereof, and we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements. Any future product, feature or related specification that may be referenced in this release are for information purposes only and are not commitments to deliver any technology or enhancement. Riverbed reserves the right to modify future product plans at any time.

About Riverbed
Riverbed delivers performance for the globally connected enterprise. With Riverbed, enterprises can successfully and intelligently implement strategic initiatives such as virtualization, consolidation, cloud computing, and disaster recovery without fear of compromising performance. By giving enterprises the platform they need to understand, optimize and consolidate their IT, Riverbed helps enterprises to build a fast, fluid and dynamic IT architecture that aligns with the business needs of the organization. Additional information about Riverbed (NASDAQ: RVBD) is available at

Riverbed and any Riverbed product or service name or logo used herein are trademarks of Riverbed Technology, Inc. All other trademarks used herein belong to their respective owners.

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