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21 May 2006

Microsoft, Swimming in the SSL Tunnel with the Whale

"Microsoft plans to buy SSL VPN vendor Whale Communications, taking in-house a company with which it already had an alliance to blend Microsoft's ISA Server software with Whale's remote access, application firewall and access-control devices. Whale technology also includes endpoint protection, the scanning of computers that are trying to access networks to determine if they meet security policies. The technology checks whether the operating system is properly patched, whether a designated anti-virus application is turned on and updated, and whether a personal firewall is turned on and configured properly", Network World It's really interesting to see Microsoft entering such market and compete with other SSL VPN vendors, but can Microsoft - the software company - compete with pure networking vendors like Cisco, and Juniper, or even Aventail which is an SSL VPN vendor only. "Microsoft says it doesn't plan to get into selling appliances, but will make the Whale software available to hardware OEMs". So is it acceptable to have your SSL VPNs terminated and secured by some software installed on a vulnerable OS like windows and not a hardened appliance with purpose built OS. There is also an open source software that can do the same thing on Linux called OpenVPN, which I think can suits your needs if you think it's enough for you to deploy your SSL VPN tunnel terminator as a software running on a general purpose OS like Linux. Tags: , , , ,