Having failed to coerce the calendar to allow the Top5 to fall on April 1st, I'll have to leave you without any gag comments, Rick Roll links, or otherwise. That's just as well though, since there's plenty of goodness on DevCentral to cover this week. We've been busy, and that's usually a good thing. Hopefully you'll agree when I say it's reflected by more and more cool content. Here's your DevCentral Top5 for the week:

iRules Event Order

http://devcentral.f5.com/Default.aspx?tabid=63&articleType=ArticleView&articleId=344

I'm very pleased to present the definitive document of event order within iRules. It's been requested many times and has been a long time in the making, but it's finally here. This walks you through each of the current events usable in your iRules and details in what order they occur in inside a given connection. Many thanks to those that helped with this. I think it's going to be a huge benefit to people writing iRules, and I'm excited to have it available. If you're even marginally involved or interested with iRules, take a look at this one.

 

Reason #5 That You Need File Virtualization

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/dmacvittie/archive/2009/04/02/reason-5-that-you-need-file-virtualization.aspx

Don continues his awesome File Virtualization series with reason #5 - disk savings. Going into detail he discusses the ways in which you can make use of this kind of virtualization to produce some pretty huge cost savings within your deployment or your organization as a whole. Not only do you get to better utilize current storage, but you get to change your purchasing plans for future storage as well. He explains it far better than I can, so follow the link and read on.

 

Creating A Graph Template in Cacti

http://devcentral.f5.com/Default.aspx?tabid=63&articleType=ArticleView&articleId=346

Following on to his extremely popular article on Cacti working with LTM, Jason saw fit to produce a tutorial in screen capture form that walks you through creating a template for graphing Web Accelerator info. Not only is graphing with Cacti and other such software a popular topic on DevCentral and elsewhere, but this kind of detailed walkthrough makes it even more cool. Jason's definitely the group expert on this stuff within the DC team, so when he talks about it I'm inclined to listen. This time is no different, and it's worth the time to listen up. If you're going to try to follow along I recommend downloading the full screen version so you can read his screen.

 

Real IT Interview - Nojan talks CDNs with Jeff

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/realit_extras/archive/2009/04/01/real-it-interview---nojan-talks-cdns-with-jeff.aspx

With Real IT at full steam ahead the content is flowing out, fast and furious. This interview is one of the many tidbits that I thought was very cool, and my favorite of the bunch this week. Jeff sat down with Nojan for an extended discussion about delivering content worldwide. They talk about some different options, pros and cons, and experiences with some of the possible solutions. It's an interesting look at a topic that garners prime real-estate just amongst most IT news sites thanks to the prevalence of the issue. This one's got some good stuff in it. Take a look for yourself.

 

How to recoup the costs associated with long URLs and variable names

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/macvittie/archive/2009/03/31/how-to-recoup-the-costs-associated-with-long-urls-and.aspx

In her typical fashion Lori brings up a very interesting topic that made me stop and think. Long variable names and more specifically long URLs can, in the right situations, contribute to a pretty hefty chunk of used bandwidth for a given application. I honestly wouldn't have thought they could be that much of a problem, transfer wise, but 74Mb/sec? That's outlandish, and very possible given the right scenario. Sure it's an extreme case, but it's used to illustrate a very valid point. There are savings to be had by saving space over the wire - big savings. This is a great read and a very thought-provoking topic, at least for me. Big kudos as well to the commenter that brought up the idea of network layer cookie jar type functionality to cut down on unnecessary transfer even more than URL shortening. Very cool stuff. Looks like it's time for an iRule …

 

There's your Top5 for the week. Feedback and comments are more than welcome, as always. Also, drop me your ideas for what should be featured and you just might see your favorite article of the week show up here.

#Colin