F5 BIG-IQ Review

Easy to manage, saves time and offers good technical support

What is our primary use case?

BIG-IQ is just a controller for the appliances of BIG-IP. That's our main use case.

How has it helped my organization?

It saves you a lot of work and time. With this solution, any person can manage all of the appliances at once.

What is most valuable?

The solution is very easy to manage.

It's great at saving time if you have a lot of appliances and you want to show a configuration of all of them at once. It's a great tool for managing your control of all of your BIG-IP appliances.

It's great for engineers or users that have a solid background in networking and protocols. If they know how everything works within the IT industry or deal with security it's easy for them to use.

The GUI is fine, at least from an engineer's perspective.

What needs improvement?

Overall, the solution is quite good, for how I use it.

The user interface could be a bit better.

The compatibility with the Hyper-V from Microsoft for cloud deployments could be improved.

You do need to have a good and solid background or foundation for networking and you need to understand how to configure F5 appliances in order to properly use it. It's not for a novice user.

I think they need to work with their automation within BIG-IQ or the BIG-IP. Almost everything has automation.

They could use YAML or JSON if they wanted to make it a little bit easier for us.

For how long have I used the solution?

I only have a little bit of experience with the solution. I've been using it for about one year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is great. The solution is very reliable. It doesn't crash or freeze. There aren't glitches. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is great. I love F5. If a company needs to expand it, they can do so relatively easily, especially if they are using a Viprion appliance.

There's only two to four of us on the solution that have admin rights. We may expand in the future

How are customer service and technical support?

So far, we've been satisfied with technical support. They are quite responsive and knowledgable. We haven't had a problem with them at all.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I used to use Cisco. I really liked it. Now, I prefer F5. Both are excellent solutions. They're in the top tier for sure.

Each one of them has its own functionality. Cisco has switches, routers, et cetera, from its products. F5, is mainly known as a load balancer for applications, for data centers, et cetera. They're hard to compare as the kind-of move in different spaces, however, they're both great.

How was the initial setup?

I've had some issues with the virtual deployment, or cloud deployment, for BIG-IQ. The compatibility with the Hyper-V from Microsoft is not very good.

When you are trying to implement a new VM, if you have already purchased BIG-IP from the website and you're trying to deploy it in the cloud (or you have a hypervisor), it's not so smooth to deal in terms of the interface. This is also true for Citrix servers. The only one that's worked perfectly for us was the VMware and virtual machine.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I don't really deal with pricing. That's more on the product manager. They handle product licensing. I don't have any idea how much the solution costs.

What other advice do I have?

This solution is one of the finest in the industry.

New users considering the solution need to understand that they need to have a solid background in networking and a few security verticals in order to successfully work with the solution. Without that, they won't be able to do anything with it beyond a basic integration. If you want to move to more advanced functionality, then you have to do programming. If you were going to implement it into a company that has a lot of web servers, you need to be familiar with APIs, JSON, JavaScript, et cetera.

Overall, I'd rate it eight out of ten. It's pretty great, and I love working with it, however, no solution is a perfect ten out of ten.

**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
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