Mirapoint Melds Mail, Security In One Appliance

And, "this is a channel-only product," said Craig Carpenter, director of channels at the Sunnyvale, Calif., company. The product carries a manufacturer's suggested retail price of about $12,000 in the United States for about 100 users, he noted, but VARs can bundle customization or offer it in a managed services scenario that is easy to set up and manage.

The bulk of Mirapoint's existing mail business--the company claims 80 million users—is in larger enterprises or offered via large service providers. This appliance, by contrast, targets companies with 100 to 500 users, Carpenter said.

Carpenter likened the back-end mail service to Microsoft Exchange but said it is more reliable. It runs on a Unix-based operating system and "people buy it because it's not Windows; they're tired of patching Windows all the time," he said.

Mirapoint utilizes its own antispam technology and Sophos' antivirus, which is updated as needed. Generally, Mirapoint faces rivals such as Ironport and Ciphertrust.

Sponsored post

For VARs servicing customers who want no-fuss, no-muss e-mail and security, Mirapoint is a good solution, said Jamie Stapleton, vice president of CBSi, an Ashland, Va.-based e-mail specialist, adding that Mirapoint "just runs."

For companies "100 percent addicted" to Microsoft's Outlook mail client, Microsoft Exchange Server may be the answer," he noted. "But at the other end of the spectrum where there's a large deskless workforce, say a college, or where people don't need shared calendars and contacts, but want e-mail and five nines [uptime] Mirapoint is perfect," he said.

Another mail VAR, who requested anonymity, said for many companies, the combination of Microsoft Exchange Server plus the required additional security and antispam, antivirus software is simply too expensive.