WebSphere Application Server

Important: End of Support for Load Balancer for IPv4 (LLB)

By Elizabeth Riggins posted Thu September 13, 2018 05:26 PM

  

WebSphere Load Balancer for IPv4 support will be discontinued after September 30, 2019.  There will be no new fixes provided under any circumstances and users are cautioned against continued use of this component.

Two Load Balancers have been distributed with WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment (WAS ND): Load Balancer for IPv4 (LLB) and Load Balancer for IPv4 and IPv6 (ULB).

Any users still using Load Balancer for IPv4 (LLB) which was distributed with WebSphere Application Server Network (WAS ND) should migrate to a replacement load balancer, WebSphere's Load Balancer for IPv4 and IPv6 (ULB) or a similar product, to prevent disruptions as service will end on September 30, 2019.

Please find below several resources to assist with migration from LLB to ULB:

Load Balancer for IPv4 (LLB) was first released as an IBM product in 1996. It is designed to intercept network traffic by inserting itself between TCP and IP in the protocol stack of the operating system. The executor portion of the code is a kernel-level extension of the operating system.

As operating systems evolved, technology to send and receive packets was exposed to the application layer of the OSI model. Applications which were not part of the operating system were encouraged in some cases and forced in other cases to stop operating as part of the operating system kernel.

Load Balancer for IPv4 and IPv6 (ULB) was a modified version of LLB which allowed the load balancer to operate on modern operating systems. This modified version was first released with WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment version 6.1 in 2008.

Notice was given with the 2008 release that LLB was stabilized and users should migrate to ULB.

LLB was last offered with WebSphere version 8.5 with limited operating system support and bundled java 6.  LLB provides an upgrade to Java 7 in fixpack 8.5.5.15 but operating system support has not updated. Many of the platforms supported by LLB are already out of support by the OS manufacturer. Of those still in support, many of those are not supported by newer releases of java greatly limiting the available platforms for this component. As such, the time has come for this software to be retired and users to move to a replacement.

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