Security is the most valuable feature for us. We have a lot of threat protections turned on and I think the gateway has inherent security protections for DDoS and a whole list of other security risks. We also have the ability to customize the security of each product that we're doing, which has been really helpful.
It also provides some load-balancing features. We can choose which traffic goes to which back-end server and the gateway will help us manage all that.
Improvements to My Organization:
I think it's protecting and exposing our internal APIs externally. We have a lot of different types of back-end technologies that use the APIs -- REST, UIs, and GUIs. So using the API product creates a single set of APIs, even though in the back-end they're much different.
Room for Improvement:
The UI is very dated. I've talked to some of the development and product managers about that, and I think it's a known issue. It's early 2000's technology. We would like to see something online and a better UI that's easier to use and more intuitive.
Reporting could use some enhancements as well. We just moved to the 8.4 version from 7.1, and they've got a new reporting tool called ESM. We're just now starting to use that, so maybe that's going to provide what we need; it's to be determined.
The deployment's taken a little longer than we expected.
We're exposing probably fifty different products externally. We've got thousands of requests, probably, per hour that come through. It's a lot of batched products -- people will run a job and it's sending a lot of things. We have a lot of traffic. The gateway itself has been stable. Downtime has usually been something like the network equipment around the gateway itself, but the gateway itself has been fairly stable.
We have development test-production environments, so to get it on our infrastructure under our own management tools, there's a lot of bureaucracy. So it's not just a push-button type deal; it requires a lot of coordination, tickets, firewall changes, provisioning hardware, things like that. All that to say that the initial setup was not straightforward but rather complex.
Other Solutions Considered:
There were several other options evaluated, but I wasn't a part of that.
I saw some things this week at CA World which I think will make the product better, more intuitive to use with a better interface and easier deployment. There are things I saw on the road map that they'll address in the near future.
I would advice that someone go through the self-training before just jumping in. I learned from co-workers as well.