Riverbed Steelhead Review

The reports available through the interface are very helpful to understand how effective the solution is working.


Valuable Features

The reports available through the interface are very helpful to understand how effective the solution is working. I was able to validate the data as well with other external monitoring tools.

Improvements to My Organization

The data reduction that we realize (>85% for our most common protocols) is amazing. This almost doubled our available bandwidth at our remote locations and when bandwidth restrictions exist already at remote sites, this was a huge business benefit.

Room for Improvement

The advertised “fail open” feature doesn’t work as expected. When upgrading and a reboot is necessary, I expected the traffic to still flow without a single packet loss. This was not the case unfortunately and neighborship was changed during the reboot. Granted, it was brief (about 7 seconds), but it still was not what I expected.

Use of Solution

We've been using it for approximately nine years.

Deployment Issues

The deployment is pretty straightforward and pretty easy.

Stability Issues

We've had no issues with the stability of the product.

Scalability Issues

There have been no issues it scaling it for our need.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Very high; the support team handling the Steelhead issues is very trained and knowledgeable on the product. At times, the request for logs and diags can be cumbersome.

Initial Setup

It was straightforward.

Implementation Team

In-house. My advice is to read the implementation guide cover to cover. It’s not a long read, but understanding it is necessary to avoid frustration.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

It is somewhat costly but not nearly as costly as additional bandwidth every month.

Other Solutions Considered

We only looked at Riverbed.

Other Advice

In addition to the effective optimization we get out of this solution it integrates directly with some Riverbed SteelCentral monitoring tools we own.

Check out software-defined WAN solutions as well before any hardware solution. SD WAN acceleration solutions have likely improved quite a bit in the last few years.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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