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

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Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) and HAProxy based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out in this report how the two Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) solutions compare in terms of features, pricing, service and support, easy of deployment, and ROI.
To learn more, read our detailed F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) vs. HAProxy Report (Updated: November 2022).
657,849 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager is a stable and reliable solution.""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.""The scalability of the solution depends on the sizing of the network. Generally, the scalability is quite good.""Its user interface is very easy to use on a day-to-day basis. It is very user-friendly.""I think F5's tech support may be better than Citrix's because they mainly focus on the ADC product, but Citrix support covers Hypervisor, XenMobile, FAS, and ADC. And from my experience, sometimes, we face some issues that Citrix cannot handle.""It is a stable product from a stable company. Recently, they have been more focused on security as well.""The web application firewall feature is the most valuable and useful feature. It is a leading industry product when it comes to load balancing. Its user interface is very simple. There isn't a steep learning curve. When we initiate someone to F5, they start using it quickly.""We have multiple solutions we can deploy through the F5."

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"Load balancing is valuable, and we are also using the WAF feature.""Having the right load balancing solution – which is what HAProxy is – and protection in place gives organizations peace of mind.""The most valuable thing for me is TCP/IP Layer 4 stuff you can do with HAProxy. You can go down to the protocol level and make decisions on something.""The most valuable feature of HAProxy is that its open source.""Stability is number one.""The solution is user-friendly and efficient.""I can't speak to all of the HAProxy features because we don't use them all, but load balancing is very good.""The features I find valuable in this solution are session control which automatically disconnects users that forget to log off, and the ability to write rules to either allow or block certain file requests."

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Cons
"In terms of native integrations, there is a lot of instability. Also, integration is not robust with F5.""Technical support is somewhat slow and could be improved.""F5 could improve the rule-setting capabilities in the GUI, and they need to simplify web management. For example, the menus in the Citrix GUI are easier to navigate, with a clean structure and layout.""In terms of what could be improved, I would expect more integration with different platforms and more integration with the backend systems. Additionally, in the next release, I would like a more secure version.""Technical support could be faster. It's something I'd like to see them work on in the future.""A more hybrid approach would be beneficial for users.""Its price can be better. It is a bit expensive.""There are some aspects of F5 BIG-IP that could be improved, the main one being virtual machine support. We have seen that even with the virtual editions, there are some things that we would like to do that are currently not possible with virtual machines."

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"The GUI should be more responsive and show the detailed output of logs.""Sometimes it's challenging to get through the log, and you need a log to understand what is going on. It isn't easy to map the logging with the documentation, and every time I read the log, I have to pull out the documentation to understand what I'm reading.""I would like to see better search handling, and a user interface, with a complete functional graphical unit""HAProxy could do with some good combination integrations.""HAProxy could improve by making the dashboards easier to use, and better reports and administration tickets.""There is no standardized document available. So, any individual has to work from scratch to work it out. If some standard deployment details are available, it would be helpful for people while deploying it. There should be more documentation on the standard deployment.""The solution can be improved by controlling TCP behavior better and mandating to clients what the expected outcome must be in order to avoid receiving contestant timeout logs.""The reconfigurability in terms of the tooling could be improved and maybe an editor plugin can be added."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "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."
  • "The price should be reduced because it is expensive when compared to the competition."
  • "The solution is quite expensive if we compare it with the competition."
  • "It is a bit expensive product. Kemp Loadmaster is much cheaper than F5. Its licensing is on a yearly basis. It can be for one year or three years."
  • "The price of the solution is sometimes expensive."
  • "You can buy it on a yearly basis, or you can go for a subscription. For on-premise boxes, it is just the RMA."
  • "Compared to using open-source products, the prices are not cheap."
  • "F5 is expensive."
  • More F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "It is free of cost."
  • "HAProxy is free open-source software."
  • "When it comes to pricing HAProxy is free."
  • "HAProxy is a free open-source solution."
  • "The licensing fee for the solution is $690 per unit annually."
  • More HAProxy Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:F5 BIG-IP LTM can improve on the SSL loading which includes the authentication of certificates. Although, most of these issues have been solved there are still some issue that persists. In a feature… more »
    Top Answer:F5 BIG-IP LTM is used for delivering applications and protecting the application from web attacks.
    Top Answer:Hello @Thameem Ansari, @SaurabhPal, @Rana Mohamed and @PradeepKumar11. Could you share your experience with @ASHUTOSH TORAWANE?
    Top Answer:I do recommend HAProxy for more simple applications or for companies with a low budget, since HAProxy is a free, open-source product. HAProxy is also a good choice for someone looking for a stable… more »
    Top Answer:The features I find valuable in this solution are session control which automatically disconnects users that forget to log off, and the ability to write rules to either allow or block certain file… more »
    Ranking
    Views
    25,394
    Comparisons
    20,818
    Reviews
    41
    Average Words per Review
    439
    Rating
    8.2
    Views
    11,625
    Comparisons
    8,874
    Reviews
    12
    Average Words per Review
    451
    Rating
    7.3
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    F5 BIG-IP, BIG-IP LTM, F5 ASM, Viprion, F5 BIG-IP Virtual Edition , Crescendo Networks Application Delivery Controller, BIG IP
    HAProxy Community Edition, HAProxy Enterprise Edition, HAPEE
    Learn More
    HAProxy
    Video Not Available
    Overview

    F5 BIG-IP LTM optimizes the speed and reliability of your apps via both network and application layers. Using real-time protocol and traffic management decisions based on app and server and connection management conditions, and TCP and content offloading, BIG-IP LTM dramatically improves application and infrastructure responsiveness. BIG-IP LTM's architecture includes protocol awareness to control traffic for the most important applications. BIG-IP LTM tracks the dynamic performance levels of servers and delivers SSL performance and visibility for inbound and outbound traffic, to protect the user experience by encrypting everything from the client to the server.

    BIG-IP LTM provides enterprise-class Application Delivery Controller (ADC). You get granular layer 7 control, SSL offloading and acceleration capabilities, and advanced scaling technologies that deliver performance and reliability on-demand. The highly optimized TCP/IP stack combines TCP/IP techniques and improvements in the latest RFCs with extensions to minimize the effect of congestion and packet loss and recovery. Independent testing tools and customer experiences show LTM's TCP stack delivers up to a 2x performance gain for users and a 4x increase in bandwidth efficiency.

    HAProxy is considered by many in the industry to be one of the fastest and most popular and trusted software load balancer products in the marketplace today. Organizations are able to immediately deploy HAProxy solutions to enable websites and applications to optimize performance, security, and observability. HAProxy solutions are available to scale to any environment.

    HAProxy is an open-source product and has a robust, active, reliable community. The solutions are continually tested and improved on by the community. HAProxy offers a dynamic design to support the most modern architectures, microservices, and deployment environments (appliances, containers, virtual, and cloud).

    HAProxy utilizes a cloud-native protocol, which makes it a complete solution for cloud services such as Red Hat OpenShift, OVH, Rackspace, Digital Ocean, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and more. It also can be used as the reference load balancer in OpenStack.

    HAProxy Products

    • HAProxy One: This is a next-gen end-to-end application delivery platform created to secure and streamline modern application architectures. It offers a complete suite of solutions, such as application delivery software, turnkey, and appliance services observed and administered through a central control plane. The product supplies application acceleration, CDN, DDoS, bot management, WAF capabilities, and load balancing.
    • HAProxy Fusion Control Plane: This product enables organizations to streamline workflows, arrange traffic routing and security protocols, enhance the speed of delivery, and scale out of the organization’s applications. HAProxy Fusion Control Plane offers an intuitive user interface to observe and control the complete product lineup and API for administering numerous fleets of HAProxy Enterprise servers, either in the cloud or on premises.
    • HAProxy Edge: This product offering is an application delivery network (ADN) that provides a broad array of turnkey application services with amazing scale and complete visibility. Services include application and content acceleration, advanced security, and load balancing.
    • HAProxy ALOHA Hardware or Virtual Load Balancer: This product is a virtual load balancer or plug-and-play hardware constructed upon HAProxy Enterprise that is designed to support proxying at Layer 4 and Layer 7. It has a user-friendly GUI, simple deployment, and no limit on backend servers, making it a complete product for organizations desiring a reliable system to provide high-end load distribution for critical services.
    • HAProxy Enterprise Kubernetes Ingress Controller: This product is designed to facilitate smooth traffic flow into a Kubernetes cluster. It is able to automatically discover anomalies and changes in an organization's Kubernetes infrastructure and provide precise distribution of traffic to healthy pods, with no downtime caused by poor pod health or scaling changes. The product comes with an embedded WAF to optimize the security of an organization’s applications running in Kubernetes.
    • HAProxy Enterprise: This product is the enterprise-class edition of HAProxy offering a dynamic and sturdy code base with next-generation features, an enterprise suite of add-ons, professional services, and trusted support. 

      • Cluster-wide tracking and rate limiting
      • Advanced DDoS and bot management
      • Web application firewall
      • Reliable expert support
      • High performance modules
      • Device detection and geolocation
      • Real-time dashboard

    Reviews from Real Users

    Having the right load balancing solution – which is what HAProxy is – and protection in place gives organizations peace of mind.” - Nathanel S., Platform Architect at SES

    “I use HAProxy for individuals who can not buy low balancers. I built NFV in a box and send individuals a pathway into an HAProxy VM. The setup was not difficult; it usually takes a day to complete for a VPC. When it comes to pricing, HAProxy is free.” - Nasir O., Network & Cloud Architect at Koala Compute Inc.

    Offer
    Learn more about F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM)
    Learn more about HAProxy
    Sample Customers
    Riken, TransUnion, Tepco Systems Administration, Daejeon University, G&T Bank, Danamon, CyberAgent Inc.
    Booking.com, GitHub, Reddit, StackOverflow, Tumblr, Vimeo, Yelp
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider24%
    Financial Services Firm15%
    Computer Software Company12%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Government7%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm35%
    Retailer18%
    Marketing Services Firm12%
    Manufacturing Company12%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company21%
    Comms Service Provider18%
    Financial Services Firm10%
    Government7%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business32%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise52%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business19%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise65%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business29%
    Midsize Enterprise38%
    Large Enterprise32%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise64%
    Buyer's Guide
    F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) vs. HAProxy
    November 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) vs. HAProxy and other solutions. Updated: November 2022.
    657,849 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) is ranked 1st in Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) with 44 reviews while HAProxy is ranked 5th in Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) with 12 reviews. F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) is rated 8.2, while HAProxy is rated 7.2. The top reviewer of F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) writes "Great support, helpful documentation, and is user-friendly". On the other hand, the top reviewer of HAProxy writes "You can go down to the protocol level and make decisions on something". F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) is most compared with Microsoft Azure Application Gateway, NGINX Plus, Citrix NetScaler, Fortinet FortiADC and A10 Networks Thunder ADC, whereas HAProxy is most compared with NGINX Plus, Kemp LoadMaster, Microsoft Azure Application Gateway, Barracuda Web Application Firewall and Fortinet FortiADC. See our F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) vs. HAProxy report.

    See our list of best Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) vendors.

    We monitor all Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.