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Free LoadMaster vs. Commercial LoadMaster and Other Open-Source Load Balancers


Free LoadMaster vs VLM-500 Subscription

FeatureFree LoadMasterVLM-500 Subscription
License TermsFreeFrom $1,377 per year
Hypervisor – VMware, Hyper-V, KVM, Xen, Oracle VirtualBoxYesYes
Public Cloud – Azure, AWSYesYes
Balancer Throughput License (L7)20MbpsUp to 500Mbps
TLS (SSL) TPS License (2K Keys)50Up to 500
SupportCommunity24×7 Premium Live Support and Expert Diagnostics
Max Servers / Virtual Clusters1000/2561000/1000
Active/Hot-standby Redundant OperationNoYes
Multi-Node ClusteringNoYes
Microsoft TMG Replacement (Pre-Authentication, SSO, MFA, IAM)YesYes
GSLB Multi-Site Load BalancingYesYes
Unlimited Performance LicenseNoNo
Layer 4/7 Load BalancingYesYes
Web Application FirewallEngine OnlyYes
Web Application Firewall Commercial RulesNoYes
Content SwitchingYesYes
Caching, Compression EngineYesYes
IPS (SNORT-Rules compatible)YesYes
L7 Cookie Persistence (Active/Passive)YesYes
Optimized templates for all major application workloadsYesYes
IPSec TunnelsYesYes
Callhome RequiredYes – Every 30 DaysOptional
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Free LoadMaster vs Other Open-Source Load Balancers

 Kemp Free LoadMasterOther Free and Open Source Load Balancers
PerformanceOptimized virtual appliance with tightly integrated operating system and load balancing services gives best possible performance across hardware platforms.Loose coupling between OS and load balancing application. Underlying OS needs to be optimized to get best performance from hardware.
Workloads SupportedAny workload that is currently supported by a commercial LoadMaster version. Supports Layer 4 to Layer 7.Variable. Some load balancers only support HTTP/HTTPS workloads.
SecurityDesigned as a single secure appliance that implements security best practices by default.Needs to be security hardened, which requires special skills and an intimate understanding of both OS and load balancing.
Time to productionMeasured in minutes.
  • Boot appliance image.
  • Set IP address.
  • Login as admin.
  • Define the virtual service.
  • Done!
Measured in hours.
  • Select, download and install Linux distro.
  • Build Linux server.
  • Patch Linux.
  • Install LB application
  • Configure virtual service.
  • Optimize performance.
  • Harden environment.
Ease of Management
  • Intuitive user interface.
  • Pre-built templates for common application workloads.
  • Often use command line (CLI) & config file.
  • Need OS and load balancer application skills.
Feature Update and Release SchedulesFeature updates delivered in sync with the commercial product using the same formal release process.Ad-hoc release schedules.
Development capacityFully resourced development team.Often a single developer or a loose community of developers.
Quality ControlFree product is subject to same QA process as paid product; automated testing using industry-leading test automation toolsets.Variable
DocumentationThe same high-quality documentation applies to Free LoadMaster just like other products in the LoadMaster family. A dedicated documentation team produces it.Can be ad-hoc and out of sync with code base.

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