N+I - SonicWall, others offer new firewall/VPN boxes

Fueled by the trend toward secure telecommuting, a handful of security and networking companies attending the Networld+Interop conference in Las Vegas announced new firewall/VPN (virtual private network) appliances Tuesday.

SonicWall Inc. announced its new Tele3 TZ appliance, which allows workers who have home networks connecting multiple PCs in their houses to attach their work PC to a separate port on the device, thereby keeping their work PC on a different network than their home network, said David Dorosin, director of product management at Sunnyvale, California, SonicWall.

The Tele3 TZ achieves this physical and logical separation by adding a second networking port to the device for the remote worker to plug their computer into, Dorosin said. The device can also be configured so that the second port, or work port, will be the only way that has access to the corporate VPN, thereby blocking any unintentional or malicious access to a corporate network from the home, he said.

A VPN is a method of securely connecting to a corporate network using the public Internet.

The new device includes support for User Level Authentication, which requires that a user authenticate themselves to the device or to a remote server before they are granted access to the VPN, Dorosin said. The Tele3 TZ also sports a firewall and can integrate antivirus and content scanning software, he said.

The box will be available in Europe and North America this month, with availability in Asia coming a few weeks later, he said. The Tele3 TZ will sell for US$545.

Also looking to hit the home worker and remote office market is Huntsville, Alabama, Adtran Inc., which added two new devices to its NetVanta line of Firewall/VPN combination boxes on Monday. Both devices offer VPNs, firewalls and NAT (Network Address Translation) routing that are compliant with IPSec (IP Security), said Eric Lewis, product manager for the Adtran enterprise networks division.

The higher-end NetVanta 2400 offers 45M bps (bits per second) of 3DES encrypted throughput, support for up to 1,000 simultaneous VPN connections, unlimited users and three 10/100 Ethernet ports, Lewis said. The box, which is aimed at larger enterprises, will be priced at $5,895.

The new NetVanta 2050, aimed at home users and small offices, offers 2M-bps 3DES throughput, two 10/100 Ethernet ports and five simultaneous VPN connections, Lewis said. The box sells for $495.

Zyxel Communications Inc. also offered an entry into the broadband security device market with its announcement of the Prestige 652 ADSL (Asynchronous Digital Subscriber Line) router. The box, which is designed to be plugged into a high-speed DSL connection, offers an IPSec VPN, a firewall and four 10/100 Ethernet ports, according to a statement from the company. The router also sports an external modem connection so that users can attach a modem as a backup device in case their DSL goes down, the company said.

The box will ship at the end of May or in early June at a price of $499, Zyxel said.

Lastly, Astaro Corp. in Karlsruhe, Germany, took the wraps off version 3 of its Astaro Security Linux device, which offers a VPN, firewall, antivirus proxy and more to users. The box, which runs on a modified version of the Linux 2.4 kernel, sports an IPSec-compliant VPN running at 33M bps, or 650M bps without IPSec, the company said in a statement. The device sports antivirus support via a Web and e-mail proxy, and offers optional load balancing and high availability features, Astaro said.

Astaro Security Linux version 3 will be available this month for $390.

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