F5 LTM

F5 Server Name Indication with Pool Selection and Redirect Support

Deploy new sites faster and improve IP address utilization with name based virtual host pool resolution on F5 LTM. Configuring a Virtual Server as described below will allow your F5 to support multiple Drupal (and other) websites on a single IP while supporting custom redirects and SSL/SNI.

At CU-Boulder HDS, we use a pair of F5's to route traffic across a redundant server pool (I'll post about that another time) and faced issues associated with a growing number of websites requiring address space on an already heavily-utilized block of 256 IP addresses. After we received a request for a redirect which could only be implemented (at that time) by deploying yet another IP address, I searched for a method to implement an Apache style Name Based Virtual Host on the F5. As such, our needs were as follows:

  • Support multiple websites requiring SSL with SNI
  • Allow redirection of traffic from HTTP to HTTPS
  • Permit sites to function entirely as redirects to other sites (eg. redirect cuhousing.colorado.edu to housing.colorado.edu)
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