An Application Delivery Network (ADN) is a suite of technologies that, when deployed together, provide application availability, security, visibility and acceleration. Gartner defines Application Delivery Networking as a combination of WAN optimization (WOC) and Application Delivery Controllers (ADCs). At the data center end of an ADN there is the Application Delivery Controller (ADC), an advanced traffic management device that is often referred to as a web switch, content switch or multilayer switch, the purpose of which is to distribute traffic among a number of servers or geographically dislocated sites based on application-specific criteria. In the branch office portion of an ADN there is the WAN optimization controller, which uses objectless caching techniques to reduce the number of bits that flow through the network, and shapes TCP traffic using prioritization and other optimization techniques. Some WOC components are installed on PCs or mobile clients, and there is typically a portion of the WOC installed in the data center.
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