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NetScaler stands by its "born at Layer 7" slogan, though it has added the VLAN (virtual LAN) features necessary to support advanced configurations that leverage the additional ports on its newest devices.

It also has added TCP buffering and data compression--fairly impressive features that enhance scalability.

In addition to its core security features--SSL and SYN flood protection--the RS9800 provides get-flood protection. Get floods are legitimate requests, but are launched by drone clients with the intent to flood servers and deny site access to real users. The RS9800 uses a combination of Java and cookies to determine the legitimacy of the client, then places the request into an appropriate queue, which can be configured to use specified amounts of bandwidth, ensuring that real users are served more quickly.

A quick console setup is all it takes to have your RS9800 up and ready to configure. I smoothly navigated the revamped Java applet-based administration console to configure the required servers and services. After adding two real servers, provided by Spirent Communications' WebReflector, I added a single virtual server providing Layer 4 load balancing.

• Comprehensive Java applet administration console

• Load-balancing options include firewalls, SSL and Layer 4-7
• Gigabit copper or SC available


• SSL configuration not intuitive
• Layer 7 configuration confusing

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