Application Delivery Controllers: A Complete Guide To ADCs

Managing traffic load and providing unparalleled performance is the top priority for any IT team. Accelerated digital transformation has only made it more important than ever to opt for solutions like an ADC (application delivery controller) to eradicate data breaches, seamlessly manage traffic load between servers, and ensure business continuity and improve application performance.

An ADC is known for SSL (security socket layers) termination, health checks, TCP reuse, compression, content switching and caching. Let’s explore more about it and learn what an ADC is, its features, and how it works.

What Are Application Delivery Controllers?

An ADC shoulders the duty of serving as a load balancing and web accelerator software that enables uninterrupted interaction between the client and application servers. Furthermore, it governs and optimizes the interaction of web application servers with client machines.

The flow of ADC is directed between two entities using algorithms that strengthen the web farm connections. It is responsible for the functional flow and management of data via various computing services and systems provided.

Typically placed in data centers amidst the firewall and application servers, it provides application acceleration, rate shaping, SSL termination, and security.

ADC rewards the user with reduced downtime, security, and high availability, performance improvement.

How Do Application Delivery Controllers Work?

The application delivery controller works mainly as a next-gen load balancer and a prominent performance elevator by taking the load off servers.

If any one of the servers or the application hosted on these servers goes down, the ADC can redirect that traffic to a healthy server, ensuring no downtime. Application delivery controllers can be hardware-based or software-defined.

They usually reside in a data center, between the firewall and one of the servers (a place known as DMZ or Demilitarized Zone). Finally, it works with the client machines to manifest greater server outputs.

Some of its functions are:

  • Application Acceleration
  • RAM Caching (storage of static content)
  • SSL offloading (decryption of encrypted content)
  • Traffic shaping (appropriate distribution)
  • Multiplexing
  • Compression (compression of media content before transferring to server)
  • Content switching
  • HTTP Rewrite and Redirection.

The ADC has a strong security system that functions over the cross-scripting platform (XXS) while also engineering the web firewalls to create protection shields against DDoS attacks and overloaded traffic servers.

Features Of Application Delivery Controllers

The following are the features of Application Delivery Controllers:

  • It provides a common operating system (OS) and control language by deploying various long-line ADC devices in the data centers.
  • Built-in web application firewall capabilities ensure protection against potential attacks like data form overruns, malformed HTTP packets, and SQL injection.
  • ADC ensures optimized functioning of the system with a proficient cloud computing facility in virtual ADC software.
  • It works on Layer 2 3, 4, and 7 for balancing the load.
  • It can work on both large-scale dedicated areas and microservices bases.
  • It offers protection against data loss and blocks malicious attacks effectively.
  • It consists of various proxy server connections and DNS applications.
  • It integrates and monitors multiple protocols like HTTPS, HTTP, DNS, TCP, and UDP, FTP/S, RADIUS , SIP etc.

Final Words

Application delivery controllers offer a secured application server and client-based platform for easy load balancing and management of overloading traffic. With their advanced features, ADCs are increasingly becoming the backbone of any IT’s infrastructure. To know more about Array’s application delivery controller, reach out to our sales today!

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Learn more about what load balancers are, along with their type and benefits, here.