Enabling Application Deployment at the Digital Edge

With F5 Distributed Cloud Services on Equinix Metal, enterprises can deploy applications at the edge quickly and securely

Vaughn Eisler
Christine Soussa
Enabling Application Deployment at the Digital Edge

As global realities propel digital demands, the increased urgency for digital applications creates challenges for enterprises that need to securely deliver and manage applications closer to users and devices. Whether it’s to enable real-time interactivity, data sovereignty, or localized data handling, customers are increasingly turning to edge computing. Equinix offers the global colocation footprint, digital services, and diverse partner ecosystem needed to help them deploy at the edge quickly and securely.

Applications are fundamentally changing every aspect of our lives. They are the primary way many of us shop, work and connect. The old requirement to push large volumes of content to all users has been replaced by demand for personal experiences and rapid access to private data. As a result, enterprises have had to swiftly adapt their application strategies, often while customizing them to the requirements of specific vendors and platforms. This operational complexity is intensified when enterprises are forced to navigate across a combination of public and private clouds, geographic data sovereignty regulations, local and wide area networks, internet service providers, and content delivery networks.

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A new approach to edge infrastructure helps simplify application management

Enterprises want to streamline how these applications are delivered with a holistic architecture that provides seamless application distribution and security at the edge. This helps ensure their applications are performant, highly available, and secure wherever end users need them.

Thanks to F5, an Equinix technology alliance partner, enterprises can simplify their edge designs to make this possible. This redefined edge combines compute and app management with security and networking at every location. With secure backhaul to resources available in public clouds, private clouds, on-premises data centers, and other remote compute instances, enterprises can take advantage of integrated application lifecycle management, orchestration, and global full-stack observability.

F5 Distributed Cloud Services transform the traditional perimeter-based security approach with a system that integrates zero-trust security capabilities into the edge infrastructure itself, with embedded tools for application-layer protection. End-to-end network security allows enterprises to geographically separate data processing and analytics from application logic, which increases flexibility while also controlling data transfer and storage requirements. Finally, F5 Distributed Cloud Services allow customers to deploy consistent enterprise-grade governance across all applications in all their public, private and edge environments.

This new edge design includes the following principles:

  • Application focus: The edge infrastructure fully integrates with application lifecycle management tools, with network and security policies tied to applications, not locations.
  • Security: Enterprises can define and enforce their application security policies in a common manner independent of the location and environment they operate in. Embedded security functions allow these security capabilities to move with the application by default.
  • Distributed data processing and analytics: The edge delivers a global fabric for application logic, data processing, and analytics, connected by a secure network VPN mesh. Enterprises are free to store, process and transform data in a different location from where the application logic resides.
  • Software-defined elastic edge: The edge of the network is no longer physical PoPs in specified locations. Instead, it can be anywhere the enterprise needs it to be: in public clouds, hypervisors, private clouds, colocation data centers, or even compute in remote locations.
  • Compute: The edge will integrate with compute services to run specific application workloads.
  • Unified control plane: A unified control plane ensures the common definition of security, data location, and user identity management policies across every supported environment and enforces execution via integration with automation and orchestration tools.

Taken together, a solution that follows these principles allows applications to adapt to their environment in support of new edge paradigms.

F5 and Equinix enable edge infrastructure at software speed

To help enterprises evolve toward this new edge design, F5 Distributed Cloud Services offer an Edge as a Service solution. Customers can deploy and operate the services they need to support distributed applications hosted and delivered at the edge. F5 Distributed Cloud Services also provide the required infrastructure—including compute, storage, networking, security, and orchestration across multiple environments—as one logical cloud instance.

Equinix is now collaborating with F5 to give our joint customers the flexibility to deploy F5 Distributed Cloud Services on Equinix Metal®, our Bare Metal as a Service platform. Equinix Metal is available in many Equinix IBX® data centers across the globe, giving customers on-demand access to single-tenant compute and storage infrastructure wherever they need it.

Deploying F5 Distributed Cloud Services on Equinix Metal enables customers to manage and secure not only apps, but also traffic going between any edge endpoint, cloud or on-premises environment and any other location on Platform Equinix®. This combination creates a global connected edge infrastructure that acts as an aggregation and delivery point for application services.

F5 Distributed Cloud Services on Equinix Metal support a wide variety of use cases for enterprises looking to connect and secure distributed applications and data. These include protecting applications and APIs deployed across clouds and edge sites, a multicloud networking solution to deploy distributed applications across all of an enterprise’s locations and data stores, as well as an application delivery network that automates application deployment globally.

In short, F5 Distributed Cloud Services on Equinix Metal deliver physical infrastructure at software speed to provide the simpler path to the edge that our joint customers have been looking for. With F5 Distributed Cloud Services on Equinix Metal, organizations can finally realize the promised value of multicloud architectures combined with distributed edge computing to turbo-charge digital transformation, speed to market and customer satisfaction.

Visit the F5 partner page to learn more about how our collaboration helps deliver better results for our joint customers.

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Vaughn Eisler Director, Business Development, Security and Storage
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Christine Soussa Senior Global Account Executive
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