SonicWall Looks to Protect the Enterprise with the NSA 3500By Frank Ohlhorst | Posted 2008-03-25 Email Print
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Unified Threat Management comes to enterprise networks via SonicWall's latest security appliances, the NSA series.
Anyone who has worked with network security products should be very familiar with the name SonicWall, a vendor that has been shaking things up in the small and midsize business world for some time. Now, SonicWall is looking to shake things up in the enterprise security market as well with its NSA series of products.
The NSA series combines multicore processing and high bandwidth capabilities to make a UTM (Unified Threat Management) security appliance that can keep up with the demands of a larger network. Currently, the product line consists of six models, ranging from the entry-level NSA 3500 to the super-high-performance NSA E7500. Models with the E prefix are specifically designed for larger enterprises, while the non-E models are aimed at the SME (small and medium enterprise) market.
In terms of basic features, all of the NSA security appliances are very much alike. All of the NSA units combine UTM protection for enterprise-class networking and IP Security VPN. The NSA Series units all use the SonicWall deep packet inspection architecture, which offers real-time detection and protection through a suite of services that include gateway anti-virus, anti-spyware, intrusion prevention, anti-spam and content filtering. What's more, a common management interface makes the NSA units easy to manage, the company said.
SonicWall provided eWEEK's Channel Labs with an NSA 3500 for review, and we were impressed by the ease of setup offered by the unit. From the outset, SonicWall has placed top priority on ease of use, and that commitment is evident through the unit's setup wizards and quick start guides. The company also provides comprehensive PDF-based documentation on how to set up and manage the product. The documentation includes a plethora of illustrations, screen shots and diagrams to help make most any custom setup a snap to perform. The unit's browser-based interface is equally clear and very concise.
Neophyte administrators will be able to quickly set up basic policies, rules or VPN connections while more advanced administrators will be able to drill down deeper into the management interface and fine-tune those same rules and policies. Usually, when a security appliance integrates so many options, the unit tends to be difficult to manage and monitor. SonicWall's redesigned management interface overcomes those problems by offering a clear path via tabs to each of the unit's capabilities.