What does Teridion do?
Teridion improves throughput for traffic traversing the Internet. They estimate that most Internet traffic will see a 5x to 20x performance increase.
Teridion accomplishes the performance increase using overlay routing. Teridion has built a network of over 5,000 virtual routers across the globe, located at many different cloud providers. Using a proprietary probing scheme much smarter than simple ping or traceroute, Teridion can determine the best path between any of the virtual routers in their network, and sends traffic across that best path via router-to-router tunneling.
The definition of best path will vary depending on customer requirements. For example, one customer might seek paths which feature low latency and jitter. Another customer might want a path that offers the very best throughput.
Teridion’s offering does not require any hardware, software, or agents to be installed by the customer. The most common Teridion deployment scenario uses a DNS CNAME to direct traffic to the Teridion virtual backbone network.
Teridion’s approach is distinct from content delivery networks. While CDNs are very good at staging static content at distribution points all over the world, they cannot readily increase performance for dynamic content. This is where Teridion shines, increasing the performance of bi-directional and dynamic content between any two endpoints.
Teridion stresses that they are not in the protocol acceleration game. Rather, Teridion functions at the IP level. Their virtual routers are, for the most part, simply routers. Teridion does not perform TCP optimizations, de-duplication, or other tricks commonly performed by WAN optimization products. This is important for customers with encrypted payloads. Teridion does not have to break into an SSL session and proxy it to improve performance.
Who do they do it for?
Teridion’s target market today is SaaS providers. When a SaaS company uses Teridion’s performance based routing, all of that the SaaS provider’s consumers stand to benefit. Teridion customers include Box, Leverate, Thru, Quixley, Egnyte, Upthere, ShareVault, and Lexifone.
How does it work?
When a customer signs up for Teridion, a Virtual Backbone Network (VBN) is created, with routing decisions optimized for the customer’s applications. Traffic enters the VBN via Teridion Cloud Router (TCR) IN, traverses the VBN, and exits via a TCR-OUT.
Traffic finds its way to the VBN most commonly via a DNS CNAME, although customers could also choose to set a next-hop or build a tunnel. Teridion performs an internal mapping to deliver the traffic to the ultimate server or load-balancer front-ending the application. Any failures within the Teridion VBN are handled by redundant TCRs, or in the worst case scenario, by simply reverting to transport via traditional Internet routing.
A customer’s best path is constantly calculated and re-calculated. As the Internet itself changes, Teridion reacts, establishing new paths as needed as quickly as milliseconds and as long as a few seconds. Teridion both knows about the Internet itself via its own custom topology mapping that does not rely on the Internet BGP table, as well as its proprietary probing that measures path quality.
Teridion stresses that the customer experience sending traffic across their VBN is a consistent one. Not only is performance improved, but that performance is predictable. That, in turn, results in a consistent experience for application consumers. Teridion enforces this not only by changing paths as required, but also by dynamically standing up and tearing down their cloud routers as needed. Their entire infrastructure is flexible and fluid, reacting to Internet changes in real-time. This makes their claim of “software defined Internet” plausible to me.
More about Teridion?
Teridion has recorded a Weekly Show podcast with Packet Pushers that is scheduled for publication on September 23, 2016.