SSL VPNs Add Muscle

Aventail's Anywhere Secure Access Policy (ASAP) 7.0 platform now offers integrated high availability via a two-node active/active cluster, which performs full-user authentication fail-over, integrated load balancing and centralized administration with synchronized policy and configuration management.

The integrated high-availability feature, in particular, has caught the interest of customers, said David Lesser, president and co-founder of Nexum, a Chicago-based security solution provider.


• Integrated high availability via two-node active/active cluster
• Ability to preconfigure Web apps, create authentication realms
• Centralized location for all access policies
• Ability to trigger devices to delete temporary files
• Checks devices for active firewall, virus scan, other security apps
• Application layer security/support for Unix/Linux systems running X-Windows apps

"We can now offer them integrated load balancing and state full-user fail-over, which means that if authentication goes down on one box, it is transmitted to the next box with no downtime and you don't have to reconnect to reauthenticate," Lesser said.

"The overall appeal of SSL VPNs is that you don't need to install client-side software," he added. "To gain remote access, all you need is a Web browser, which cuts costs."

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Integrated high availability and other new features in ASAP 7.0,including the ability to preconfigure Web applications, centralize the location of all access policies and create authentication realms to support users in multiple directories,carry no additional cost, said Chris Witeck, senior product marketing manager at Aventail, Seattle.

F5 Networks plans to launch the latest version of FirePass Controller, an SSL VPN device that provides end users with secure remote access to corporate applications. F5 obtained the product via its acquisition of uRoam in July, and this week's release will mark the device's debut under the F5 name.

New features include the ability to trigger access devices to delete temporary files created during a session, which boosts security for users connecting via public PCs or kiosks, said Dan Matte, vice president of product marketing and product management at Seattle-based F5.

FirePass Controller also can now check devices for active firewall, virus scan or other security programs before granting network access. It also adds application layer security features and support for Unix/Linux systems running X-Windows applications. Available now, FirePass Controller is priced starting at around $10,000.