Select the deployment mode based on datacenter topology

The appliance can be placed in line with your WAN link. The appliance uses two bridged Ethernet ports for inline mode. Packets enter one Ethernet port and exit through the other. This mode puts the appliance between your WAN router and your LAN. For the rest of the network, it is as if the appliance were not there at all. Its operation is completely transparent.

Inline mode has the following advantages over the other deployment modes:

  • Maximum performance.

  • Very easy configuration, using only the Quick Installation page.

  • No reconfiguration of your other network equipment.

Other modes (WCCP, virtual inline, redirector) are less convenient to set up, generally requiring that you reconfigure your router, and they have somewhat lower performance.

A basic deployment consideration is whether your site has a single WAN router or multiple WAN routers. You also have to think about which features can be used in which modes. A requirement to support VPNs affects the placement of the appliance in your network.

Access Gateway appliances support Citrix SD-WAN WANOP TCP optimizations, enabling accelerated VPN connections when Citrix SD-WAN WANOP appliances are deployed with Access Gateway.

Overview of deployment modes

The appliance can be deployed in the following modes:

Forwarding modes

  • Inline mode—Highest-performance, most transparent mode. Data flows in on one accelerated Ethernet port and out on the other. Requires no router reconfiguration of any kind.

  • Inline with dual bridges—Same as inline, but with two independent accelerated bridges.

  • WCCP mode—Recommended when inline mode is not practical. Supported by most routers. Requires only three lines of router configuration. To use WCCP mode on a Cisco router, the router should be running at least IOS version 12.0(11)S or 12.1(3)T. (WCCP stands for Web Cache Communications Protocol, but the protocol was greatly expanded with version 2.0 to support a wide variety of network devices.)

  • Virtual Inline mode—Similar to WCCP mode. Uses policy based routing. Generally requires a dedicated LAN port on the router. Not recommended on units without an Ethernet bypass card. To use virtual inline mode on a Cisco router, the router should be running IOS version 12.3(4)T or later.

  • Group mode—Used with two or more inline appliances, one per link, within a site. Recommended only when multiple bridges, WCCP, and virtual inline modes are all impractical.

  • High-availability mode—Transparently combines two inline or virtual inline appliances into a primary/secondary pair. The primary appliance handles all the traffic. If it fails, the secondary appliance takes over. Requires no router configuration. Requires an appliance with an Ethernet bypass card.

  • Transparent Mode—The recommended mode for communication with the Citrix SD-WAN WANOP Plug-in. In transparent mode, the Plug-in initiates connections in essentially the same way as the Citrix SD-WAN WANOP appliance, keeping the original IP address and port number of the connection and adding Citrix SD-WAN WANOP options to the TCP/IP headers of selected packets. By contrast, in redirector mode (not recommended), the Plug-in alters the destination IP and port numbers of the packets to match the signaling IP (and port) of the appliance.

  • Redirector mode (not recommended)—Used by the Citrix SD-WAN WANOP Plug-in to forward traffic to the appliance. Can be used as a stand-alone mode or combined with one of the other deployments. Requires no router configuration.

Acceleration modes

  • Softboost mode—A high-performance TCP variant that is recommended for most links. Although it provides less performance than hardboost mode, it works with any deployment. Acts like normal TCP, but faster.

  • Hardboost mode—A highly aggressive, bandwidth-limited TCP variant useful for high-speed links, intercontinental links, satellite links, and other fixed-speed links for which achieving full link speed is difficult. Recommended for fixed-speed, point-to-point links where traffic shaping is not required.


    For more information on Citrix SD-WAN WANOP appliances and deployment modes, see the Citrix SD-WAN WANOP platform documentation.

Select the deployment mode based on datacenter topology