f5friday_thumb IT Brand Pulse carries a series of reports based upon surveys conducted amongst IT professionals that attempt to ferret out the impression that those working in IT have of the various vendors in any given market space. Their free sample of such a report is the November 2010 FCoE Switch Market Leader Report and it is an interesting read, though I admit it made me want to paw through some more long-form answers from the participants to see what shaped these perceptions. The fun part is trying to read between the lines, since this is aimed at the perceived leader, you have to ask how much boost Cisco and Brocade received in the FCoE space just because they’re the FC vendors of choice. But of course, no one source of information is ever a complete picture, and this does give you some information about how your peers feel – whether that impression is real or not – about the various vendors out there.

It’s not the same as taking some peers to lunch, but it does give you an idea of the overall perceptions of the industry in one handy set of charts.

This February, F5 was honored by those who responded to their Load Balancer Market Leader Report with wins in three separate categories of Load Balancing – price, performance, and innovation, and took the overall title of “Market Leader” in load balancing.

We, of course, prefer to call ourselves an Application Delivery Controller (ADC), but when you break out the different needs of users, doing a survey on load balancing is fair enough. After all, BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) has its roots in load balancing, and we think it’s tops.

IT Brand Pulse is an analyst firm that provides a variety of services to help vendors and IT staff make intelligent decisions. While F5 is not, to my knowledge, an IT Brand Pulse customer, I (personally) worked with the CEO, Frank Berry while he was at QLogic and I was writing for Network Computing. Frank has a long history in the high tech industry and a clue what is going on, so I do trust his company’s reports more than I trust most analyst firms.

We at F5 are pleased to have this validation to place next to the large array of other awards, recognition, and customer satisfaction we have earned, and intend to keep working hard to earn more such awards. It is definitely our customers that place us so highly, and for that we are very grateful. Because in the end it is about what customers do with our gear that matters. And we’ll continue to innovate to meet customer needs, while keeping our commitment to quality.