Cisco® Wide Area Application Services (WAAS) is a comprehensive WAN optimization and application acceleration solution. Cisco WAAS accelerates applications and data over the WAN, optimizes bandwidth, empowers cloud computing, and provides local hosting of branch IT services, all with industry-leading network integration. As a crucial component of Cisco Borderless Networks and data center and virtualization architectures, Cisco WAAS allows IT departments to centralize applications and storage while maintaining productivity for branch-office and mobile users.
Cisco WAAS enables organizations to accomplish these primary IT objectives:
● Consolidate data centers
● Optimize branch-office sites with reduced network and IT infrastructure
● Manage bandwidth expenses
● Deliver desktop virtualization and rich-media applications
● Deliver high-performance cloud computing and software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications
Cisco WAAS Software Version 4.2 provides these main features:
● Cisco WAAS for Cisco Integrated Service Routers Generation 2 (ISR G2) on Cisco Service-Ready Engine (SRE) Modules.
- Cisco WAAS software can be provisioned as an application service on Cisco SRE 700 and 900 Service Modules (SMs) on the Cisco ISR G2 platforms.
- Cisco SRE deployment enables remote activation of WAN optimization and eliminates the need for service calls and on-site installation.
● Enhanced HTTP application optimizer.
- Improve HTTP response time, reduce HTTP server load, and reduce WAN bandwidth consumption.
● Expanded Windows-on-WAAS capabilities.
- Cisco WAAS Software Version 4.2 has received Microsoft Windows Server Virtualization Validation Program (SVVP) validation for Windows 2008 and Windows 2008 Release 2 (R2).
- Most Microsoft Windows services and applications can be hosted on Cisco WAAS as virtual blades.
- The Microsoft Windows applications hosted on Cisco WAAS have higher performance due to multiprocessing and high network throughput.
- Windows applications can be remotely installed on Cisco WAAS virtual blades using the preboot execution environment (PXE).
● Serial inline cluster for data centers.
- Two Cisco WAAS appliances can be deployed inline in a serial manner using inline cards.
- Up to four inline groups are supported on Cisco WAE-674, Cisco WAE-7341 and Cisco WAE-7371, by using two inline cards.
- Enable high availability and redundancy for Cisco WAAS appliances in data centers.
● Integrated Cisco WAAS configuration on Cisco ISR.
- Enable single-screen configuration of Cisco WAAS Network Modules (NMEs) and Cisco WAAS SRE Modules using Cisco Configuration Professional or the Cisco IOS® Software command-line interface (CLI).
- Provide proactive setup diagnostics.
- Quicken and simplify Cisco WAAS NME and Cisco WAAS on Cisco SRE Module setup.
● SaaS optimization.
- Optimize SaaS traffic with HTTP and HTTPS acceleration.
- Automatically adapt to private and public cloud server IP address changes and make the change transparent to IT administrators.
- Cisco now offers an end-to-end Cisco WebEx™ optimization solution that consists of a WebEx® node on Cisco ASR Aggregation Services Routers and Cisco WAAS.
● Common Criteria EAL-4 certification.
- Cisco WAAS Software 4.2 has received Common Criteria EAL-4 certification.
- The certification is recognition that the security of Cisco WAAS is designed and implemented in a rigorous manner that conforms to the standards of the security industry.
Cisco WAAS offers numerous benefits that distinguish it from other WAN optimization products.
Cisco WAAS is the only WAN optimization solution that has jointly published validated designs with major application vendors such as Oracle, SAP, Microsoft, and IBM. They offer best practices and significantly reduce the risk of deploying WAN optimization to accelerate these applications.
● With Microsoft, Cisco has developed the optimized branch-office architecture through which Cisco WAAS is used to optimize performance of centralized applications such as Microsoft Exchange, SharePoint, and file services, while Microsoft Windows core services such as Microsoft Active Directory and print services are integrated into branch-office Cisco WAAS devices using Cisco WAAS virtual blades for local hosting. The Cisco WAAS optimization for Microsoft Windows protocols has been developed with Microsoft, and the relevant intellectual property rights (IPRs) are licensed from Microsoft.
● Cisco offers joint escalation support with some major application and storage vendors to help ensure that cross-vendor concerns are appropriately addressed.
Cisco WAAS transparent architecture (Figure 1) enables integration into the network and preservation of existing network services, thereby making WAN acceleration easy to deploy and operate.
● Network transparency and preservation of IP and TCP header information allows ease of operation and interoperability with network services such as quality of service (QoS), NetFlow, access control lists (ACLs), firewalls, Cisco Performance Routing (PfR), and IP service-level agreements (SLAs).
● Cisco WAAS offers automatic discovery of optimization devices, simplifying operations for all types of WAN architectures (including Multiprotocol Label Switching [MPLS], hierarchical networks, and hub-and-spoke topologies).
● Cisco WAAS integrates with all the Cisco firewalls - Cisco IOS Firewall, PIX® Firewall Software, ASA 5500 Series Enterprise Firewall Edition, and Catalyst® 6500 Series Firewall Services Module (FWSM) - to provide the only solution in the industry that gives customers full stateful firewall inspection and network virus-scanning capabilities for accelerated traffic.
● For inline deployments, Cisco WAAS offers a low-latency voice-over-IP (VoIP) traffic bypass feature that has been stress tested with Cisco VoIP test beds.
Low Total Cost of Ownership
Cisco WAAS is cost effective and provides the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) of any solution currently on the market.
● By integrating Cisco WAAS into network modules or Cisco SRE Modules on Cisco ISR, Cisco WAAS reduces capital expenditures (CapEx), operating expenses (OpEx), and support costs. By reducing the number of branch-office devices needed, Cisco WAAS decreases OpEx by up to 70 percent.
● Cisco WAAS virtual blades provide local hosting with centralized deployment for Microsoft Windows and Linux branch-office services while reducing the branch-office device footprint.
● Cisco WAAS eliminates the need for WAN bandwidth upgrades and complex configuration for wide-scale delivery of live video to the branch office.
Cisco WAAS provides flexible deployment options, as shown in Figure 1 and summarized in Table 1.
Table 1. Cisco WAAS Flexible Deployment Options
Cisco WAAS Appliances
Cisco WAAS Modules on Cisco ISR and ISR G2
Mobile or home-office PCs
Features and Benefits
Table 2 summarizes the main features and benefits of Cisco WAAS. For detailed information about acceleration for mobile users, please refer to the.
Table 2. Main Benefits and Features of Cisco WAAS
Cisco WAAS offers the following licenses based on feature capabilities:
● Cisco WAAS Transport license: This license provides the WAN optimization features of Cisco WAAS, including DRE, Lempel-Ziv (LZ) compression, and TFO, optimizing application delivery to the branch office.
● Cisco WAAS Enterprise license: This license provides Transport license functions plus application-specific accelerations for protocols including CIFS, MAPI, HTTP, SSL, NFS, and Microsoft Windows print services, to facilitate application acceleration, WAN optimization, and IT consolidation.
● Cisco WAAS Live Video license: This add-on license provides wide-scale delivery of live video to the branch office across the WAN. It offers automated edge-stream splitting to help ensure that only one video stream is downloaded over the WAN regardless of the number of users in the branch office viewing that stream. This option is available only when the Cisco WAAS Enterprise license is ordered.
● Cisco WAAS Virtual Blade license: This add-on license enables local hosting of server OS and applications on Cisco WAAS appliances. This option is available only when the Cisco WAAS Enterprise license is ordered and is available for Cisco WAVE-274, Cisco WAVE-474, Cisco WAVE-574 and Cisco WAE-674 with Cisco WAAS Software Versions 4.1 and 4.2.
● Cisco WAAS Virtual Blade license with Microsoft Windows Server Core 2008: This add-on license offers organizations flexible delivery of branch-office IT services while reducing the device footprint. The first set of certified and supported hosted services includes Microsoft Windows Active Directory, DNS, DHCP, and print as part of the Microsoft Windows Server 2008 core services. This option is available only when the Cisco WAAS Enterprise license is ordered and is available for Cisco WAVE-274, Cisco WAVE-474, Cisco WAVE-574 and Cisco WAE-674 with Cisco WAAS Software Versions 4.1 and 4.2.
For ordering information, please contact your local Cisco account representative.
Upgrade from Cisco WAAS Software Versions 4.0 and 4.1
Customers who have an active Software Application Support plus Upgrades (SASU) contract in place can upgrade from Cisco WAAS Software Version 4.0 or 4.1 to Version 4.2 with no additional cost.
Web Cache Communication Protocol (WCCP) is a free Cisco IOS Software feature that runs on the following Cisco platforms:
● Cisco routers such as the Cisco 1800, 2800, and 3800 Series ISR; Cisco 1900, 2900, and 3900 Series ISR G2; Cisco 7000 Series; and Cisco ASR 1000 Series Routers.
● Cisco switches such as the Cisco Catalyst 4500 and 6500 Series Switches and Cisco Nexus® 7000 Series Switches.
Service and Support
Cisco offers a wide range of services programs to accelerate customer success. These innovative services programs are delivered through a unique combination of people, processes, tools, and partners, resulting in high levels of customer satisfaction. Cisco Services offerings help you protect your network investment, optimize network operations, and prepare the network for new applications to extend network intelligence and the power of your business. For more information about Cisco Services, seeand .
For More Information
For more information about Cisco WAAS Software Version 4.2, visitor contact your local account representative.