F5 – Authenticity Assured: Safeguarding Your Network Against Non-Genuine Products

F5 Networks is a leading provider of application delivery networking (ADN) products that ensure the reliable delivery and security of network-based applications. Like any other high-value tech product, there is a growing market for non-genuine F5 products, often sold at lower prices to attract budget-conscious businesses. However, F5 has clarified that non-genuine F5 products get no warranty or support, and services may be terminated if discovered. Let’s explore the implications of this policy and how to verify the authenticity of F5 products.

The Allure of Non-Genuine Products

Non-genuine or counterfeit products often become cheaper alternatives to high-quality, original products. However, the hidden costs associated with these non-genuine offerings can lead to significant problems. Subpar performance, security vulnerabilities, and the absence of manufacturer support are just a few potential issues businesses can face when opting for counterfeit goods.

No Warranty or Support

F5 offers a comprehensive warranty and support services for its genuine products, offering a layer of assurance for customers. This includes technical support, software updates, and replacing malfunctioning parts. However, non-genuine F5 products are not eligible for these benefits. Businesses that use counterfeit F5 products forfeit these guarantees, leaving themselves vulnerable to potential issues with no direct support from F5.

Termination of Services

The consequences can be severe if F5 discovers a business using non-genuine products. The company can terminate its services, revoke licenses, and block access to updates. This could disrupt the operation of the entire network infrastructure, leading to costly downtime and potential security risks.

Legal Implications

Beyond the immediate impact, using non-genuine products could lead to legal repercussions. Intellectual property laws protect companies like F5 from the unauthorized reproduction and sale of their products. Businesses using counterfeit products could be implicated in these violations and may face fines or legal action.

Authenticating F5 Products

F5 products can be verified using the F5 command line interface (CLI) or through F5’s official web-based management console. Here’s how to authenticate using the CLI:

1. Connect to your F5 device via SSH or the console.

2. Use the show /sys hardware command. This will display information about your F5 system’s hardware, including the serial number.

3. Take note of the serial number and any other relevant details.

4. Contact F5 support with this information. They can confirm whether the product is genuine and registered to your organization.

Here’s another way:

For BIG-IP 11.x and later or Enterprise Manager 3.x:

1. Connect to your F5 product via SSH or through the console directly.

2. Run the tmsh list net interface all vendor command.

3. The command output will show the vendor names associated with any optical modules installed. Genuine F5 modules will have the vendor name as ‘F5 NETWORKS INC’.

[root@localhost:Active:Standalone] config # tmsh list net interface all vendor

net interface 1.1 {
   vendor none
net interface 2.1 {
   vendor "F5 NETWORKS INC"
net interface 2.2 {
   vendor "F5 NETWORKS INC"
net interface 2.3 {
   vendor "FINISAR CORP"
net interface 2.4 {
   vendor none
net interface mgmt {
   vendor none


While non-genuine F5 products may offer an enticing initial cost-saving, the long-term ramifications can be catastrophic for businesses. The lack of official support, the risk of service termination, potential legal issues, and the potential for substandard performance and security risks far outweigh any upfront savings. As a best practice, always purchase F5 products from authorized resellers and verify their authenticity with F5 directly. With genuine F5 products, you’re investing in a trusted partner, robust support, and reliable, secure application delivery networking.