Altiris Security Suite Builds On Pedestal Technology

With the new software, resellers can deliver a platform to their customers that enables the creation of appropriate security policy and practices, said Howie Hecht, Altiris' senior product manager for AuditExpress, the primary component of the suite, announced May 26. "It's a starting point to developing a security policy," he said.

The suite integrates several existing Altiris capabilities, such as patch management, application metering and Windows operating-system management, with AuditExpress, which Altiris acquired with Pedestal.

The software performs security audits and assessments, then delivers reporting based on a predefined catalogue of about 700 known vulnerabilities ranging from weak password settings to unauthorized devices that may be connected to the network, Hecht said. Patching, metering and management components work in conjunction with the audit and reporting tools, he said.

The suite does not perform a mass scan of the entire network, but rather, users assign the suite to audit particular groups of systems. "It doesn't just set out to audit everything, because you may have different security policies in different departments," Hecht said.

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Once security policies and practices are established using the suite, users typically will be ready to graduate into Altiris' more sophisticated Security Expressions platform, an agentless security policy management system which was also won in the Pedestal acquisition, Hecht said.

Robert Hearn, president of The Blue Willow Group, an Altiris partner in Houston, endorsed the suite as a starting point for establishing security policies but said Blue Willow likely will move some of its customers to Security Expressions after less than two years. Altiris Security Suite starts at $59 per node, with volume discounts available.