Zeus Technology has produced a new version of itsa traffic management software.

Extensible Traffic Manager Virtual Appliance (ZXTM VA) runs as a virtual appliance on top of servers on VMware's ESX Server 3, typically deployed in data centres.

The appliance manages incoming network traffic across a cluster of virtual machines, inspecting, routing, rewriting and manipulating each request. As virtual machines are deployed, moved and removed, ZXTM VA routes incoming traffic so that it is delivered to the most available, responsive machines.

Chief technology officer Damian Reeves said the appliance runs on a hardened version of Linux. "We take out unnecessary services, and built a Web-based management system to hide the underlying OS", he said. It is only available through the Virtual Appliance Marketplace area of VMware's website.

Reeves stressed the company's agnosticism: "Today we talk about VMware but a lot of the benefits we bring through VAs and application traffic management are relevant to Microsoft, Xen, and SWsoft too." According to Zeus, ZXTM VA has passed VMware's certification programme, the aim of which is to guarantee that all featured virtual appliances have been fully configured to operate natively within VMwares ESX Server 3.

"In launching the Virtual Appliance Network, VMware has made a bold play to create an eco-system of solutions that will help organisations deploy and manage a completely virtualised data centre environment," said Zeus CEO Paul Di Leo. "By joining this programme, Zeus is able to help VMware customers improve the performance and resilience of their virtualised applications, giving them greater control over security, provisioning and traffic management."

A trial version is downloadable from Zeus' website.