Citrix NetScaler vs F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) comparison


Comparison Buyer's Guide

Executive SummaryUpdated on Mar 6, 2024

Categories and Ranking

Citrix NetScaler
Ranking in Application Delivery Controllers (ADC)
Average Rating
Number of Reviews
Ranking in other categories
No ranking in other categories
F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Man...
Ranking in Application Delivery Controllers (ADC)
Average Rating
Number of Reviews
Ranking in other categories
No ranking in other categories

Mindshare comparison

As of June 2024, in the Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) category, the mindshare of Citrix NetScaler is 13.1%, down from 15.1% compared to the previous year. The mindshare of F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) is 13.1%, down from 16.4% compared to the previous year. It is calculated based on PeerSpot user engagement data.
Application Delivery Controllers (ADC)
Unique Categories:
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Featured Reviews

Dec 22, 2021
User-friendly setup with content switching and integrated caching features
We used this mostly for disaster recovery plan (DRP), for global service load balancing, and Citrix Access Gateway.  What I found most valuable from Citrix ADC were the Content Switching and Integrated Caching features which were the things we commonly installed for our customers. The only thing…
Feb 17, 2021
Very stable and easy to use with a good GUI
Technical support is slow and it could be faster. I had one issue once that was not very serious as it was on the Disaster Recovery Site. We were able to pull a previous version from a snapshot. However, the issue was that I was able to solve the problem myself before I even heard back from technical support. If they knew their technology, how is it that I could solve the problem faster as a person that's not as familiar with it? They need to be much faster. It could have been a much bigger problem. I'd say, overall, we aren't satisfied with the technical support for that reason.

Quotes from Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:


"It is a complete solution for those looking for an all-in-one."
"The NetScaler appliance has provided a lot of customers with greater high availability for their enterprise applications within a single site and across multiple locations."
"The solution improves security performance."
"One of the most beneficial features for application delivery is its integration with Citrix Storefront, facilitating user logins and ensuring continuity during data center outages."
"The solution can scale."
"SSL Offload"
"Easy, user-friendly setup with content switching and integrated caching features."
"The maintenance of the solution is not complex."
"I've worked a little bit with iRules and it is amazing."
"Our experience has been very good, in terms of performance, and securing our application infrastructure."
"Where we are finding the AWS version helpful is when we are trying to scale up new environments. AWS Marketplace helps here a lot."
"iRules are very valuable. In addition to that, the way profiles are depicted by the LTM is also very good."
"In my team, we work in a very agile environment and the solutions from BIG-IP, including BIG-IP WAF, suit us well when developing and serving our applications."
"One of the greatest things about F5 Load Balancer is that it provides additional capability for handling huge workloads and routing them to an SAP or non-SAP application. It is capable of supporting a large amount of user workload and application connectivity workload. This was the main reason why we chose F5."
"The most helpful thing is that it's open-source. It's very easy to program and customize."
"It is very intuitive, easy to deploy, and manage."


"In terms of what could be improved, I would say the user interface because sometimes it can be complicated."
"The customization has always been a key area where some improvements are required. In the beginning, everything was for customizing the outer shell of it. You had to use the command-based utility and you had to do a lot of manual work. They have improved it a little bit and now there are some GUI-based functionalities that can be used. However, more can be done that doesn't require a lot of intervention. Right now there are some features, there are some customizations that can be done, but it's still very tedious, very cumbersome, a lot of work. So that could be simplified."
"Citrix ADC can improve if it provides a more user-friendly interface and clear working protocols. Citrix is not working with classic RFC, it is working with Citrix RFC, which is not common in the world. If engineers of Citrix can provide us with more information on working with the classic IP networks it would be a benefit."
"In every release - and it doesn't matter if it's a minor release or a major release - they keep moving things around and they keep changing the mechanism. So certain things can work in one version one way, and everything works really well, then when you upgrade it to the next version, it breaks everything because they have a new way of doing it."
"Should offer more flexible cost-effective licensing for small to medium sized organizations."
"An area for improvement would be the difficulty in finding information about standard licensing costs over the internet. They should provide some reference prices on the net to be quickly referred to."
"Does not include security. A web application firewall would be a nice addition."
"I would like to see more integration for single sign-on."
"My only point of contention would be that it is a little pricey."
"The pricing of the product is a bit too high."
"For integration with other AWS environments, we do some tie-ins with some autoscaling groups. This has been challenging for us. We have had issues, where when autoscaling groups scale up, there are some instances which are not showing up in the proper size. Then, those IPs would get registered with F5, but never get released. Therefore, we are ending up with a whole bunch of ghosted IPs."
"There is a need for a more modular version to concentrate on the current monolithic structure of both the virtual and hardware versions."
"I would like there to be more device security. I would like the tool to support SSL links, along with SSL and TLS."
"It is a hardware load balancer, and its installation procedure is more complex than a software load balancer. There are pros and cons of using hardware load balancing. You have to have specific hardware deployed in your data center to activate this load balancer. They never came up with any software-based load balancing solution. It is all hardware-based."
"In the LTM solution, it would be beneficial to have more algorithms for traffic segmentation or the ability to create user-defined algorithms rather than being restricted to predefined ones."
"F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager is sometimes a bit cumbersome to deal with some builds, although that's gotten significantly better over the years."

Pricing and Cost Advice

"The firewall license is included by default, with no additional costs."
"Citrix NetScaler VPX is not the cheapest solution out there, but you get what you pay for."
"For the specific use case that my customers primarily engage with, I would give the pricing a rating of seven out of ten."
"Price-wise, I feel that the solution is a little bit expensive."
"Regarding pricing, while it's expensive, I can't comment on the exact ROI without a budget analysis. However, in terms of service quality, it's worth the price."
"The price for Citrix ADC here in Mexico was good, when you compare it with F5 and Radware."
"Citrix ADC could improve the price and make it less expensive, other competitors have a better prices. This would allow Citrix ADC to keep dominating the market."
"You get the value for your money. There aren't any hidden fees."
"You can buy it on a yearly basis, or you can go for a subscription. For on-premise boxes, it is just the RMA."
"It is the best solution, but that comes with an increased price."
"F5 BIG-IP can be expensive, although there are trial versions available which are helpful to find out if the solution is right for your company."
"LTM is a good product, but it's expensive. They should make it more competitive because cloud providers offer free load balancing. Cloud providers can't cover all the security aspects of F5, but you get a decent amount of security. Cloud environments are becoming the norm across the IT industry. Many of the larger companies that previously used on-prem infrastructure are switching to the cloud, so companies like Fortinet and Palo Alto are reducing their prices. Otherwise, they can't compete in the cloud."
"The licensing pricing seems relatively easy enough to get your head around. I would advise anyone to ensure that you have a conversation with an F5 consultant before purchasing, as you would with most products."
"F5 pricing is too high, compared to Citrix."
"The price of the solution is sometimes expensive."
"The licensing strategy for F5 is good."
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Top Industries

By visitors reading reviews
Computer Software Company
Financial Services Firm
Healthcare Company
Financial Services Firm
Computer Software Company
Manufacturing Company

Company Size

By reviewers
Large Enterprise
Midsize Enterprise
Small Business

Questions from the Community

What do you like most about Citrix ADC?
The most valuable feature for us is the application firewalling in Citrix NetScaler, ensuring only valid traffic enters our environment.
What is your experience regarding pricing and costs for Citrix ADC?
After deployment, Citrix Netscaler shifted to a subscription-based license scheme for support, which is slightly more expensive.
What needs improvement with Citrix ADC?
Citrix NetScaler is a robust product, but mastering it requires significant learning and training due to its complexity. While it could be easier to manage, it is like transitioning from driving a ...
What do you like most about F5 BIG-IP?
The support from F5 BIG-IP LTM is good.
What is your experience regarding pricing and costs for F5 BIG-IP?
There are a few licensing options available for F5 BIG-IP LTM. You can have a perpetual license which is a lifetime license. You then only need to renew the support, if you choose to open a ticket ...
What needs improvement with F5 BIG-IP?
The pricing must be more flexible. We get billed for firewalls based on the usage. It will be helpful if the solution provides such flexibility.

Also Known As

Citrix ADC, NetScaler, Citrix NetScaler VPX
F5 BIG-IP, BIG-IP LTM, F5 ASM, Viprion, F5 BIG-IP Virtual Edition , Crescendo Networks Application Delivery Controller, BIG IP

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Sample Customers

ABB Schweiz, Aer Lingus, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Amnet Technology Solutions, Aramex International, Ascenty, Atos, Autodesk
Riken, TransUnion, Tepco Systems Administration, Daejeon University, G&T Bank, Danamon, CyberAgent Inc.
Find out what your peers are saying about Citrix NetScaler vs. F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) and other solutions. Updated: May 2024.
789,577 professionals have used our research since 2012.