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Blue Coat Puts On Acceleration

Blue Coat Systems is the latest entry into the WAN acceleration space. By adding WAN optimization to its appliances that secure content and accelerate application delivery over the Web, the startup hopes to get customers to add its wares to remote and branch offices. (See BlueCoat Enters WAFS Fray.)

Blue Coat calls its approach MACH5 (multiprotocol accelerated caching hierarchy), which refers to an optimization framework consisting of bandwidth management, protocol optimization, object caching, byte caching, and compression.

Is the latest WAN optimization vendor too late? A bunch of contenders have moved into this space over the last two years, including networking and storage switch companies Brocade, Cisco, Juniper, and McData. And startups Availl, Certeon, DiskSites, Expand, Orbital Data, Packeteer, Riverbed, Signiant, Silver Peak, and Tacit Networks have also launched products. (See Remote Access Advances.)

Blue Coat product manager Chris King says MACH5 goes beyond any of the current offerings by handling more types of applications.

We think the industry’s developed a knee-jerk response,” King says. “We handle a full range of applications, not just file and email.”

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