QoS versus bandwidth optimization appliance

I read some white papers on Cisco qos on the 3750X and I saw vendors like Procera and Bluecoat that have bandwidth optimization appliance. So my questions are:
- what is the difference between Cisco qos and those vendors?
- Which one is better?
- If I have Cisco qos implemented on my switches, do I need those appliances and vice versa.

I know that Cisco qos on the switches is a software implementation. I guess those vendors are software and hardware.

Thanks
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leblancAccountingAsked:
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giltjrConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Bandwidth optimization is typically for HTTP, FTP, file sharing type traffic.

However there is some products out there now that will try and compress the VoIP traffic to reduce the amount of bandwidth it needs.

So it really does not "optimize" the bandwidth, but reduced the bandwidth required.
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giltjrConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Basically QOS helps decide who gets to jump to the front of the line if there is traffic queued up.

This can can be within your LAN and/or over a private WAN link.

Bandwidth optimization helps optimize the use of bandwidth on a WAN link.  This is accomplished in various ways such as:

     file caching
     dynamic data compression as it flows over the WAN
     optimizing TCP window sizes

Which is better, it depends on what you are trying to do and where.  Bandwidth optimization only works on WAN links and requires hardware at each end of the WAN.  Typically is only a big advantage on "slow" WAN links.  Most implementations are greate for T1/E1's, not bad on DS3, but start to have limited help once you get to 100Mbps or above.  However they do work over VPN's over the Internet.

QOS  works on LAN and/or private WAN's, but will not work over the Internet.  It may help some on VPN's over the Internet.  But once traffic hit the Internet QOS is ignored.
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leblancAccountingAuthor Commented:
"they do work over VPN's over the Internet." So let say I am using VoIP through site to site VPN via the Internet. How will the bandwidth optimization help? Thx
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