Privacy

Microsoft to offer pre-installed network security

The software giant says it's lining up hardware partners such as Hewlett-Packard and Network Engines for its Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server software, due to launch later this year.

Microsoft said Monday that it would begin selling network security software pre-installed on computers, taking aim at a market dominated by appliance security vendors.


Get Up to Speed on...
Enterprise security
Get the latest headlines and
company-specific news in our
expanded GUTS section.


The software giant said it is lining up hardware partners such as Hewlett-Packard and Network Engines for its Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server software, due to launch later this year.

Companies such as CheckPoint Software Technologies and SonicWall have been longtime players in the market for security appliances, which are networked computers, often with self-updating and configuring software, plugged directly into networks to protect them from attacks and allow secure access over the Internet.

Jonathan Perera, senior director at Microsoft's security technology unit, said the software was designed to run right "out of the box" without complicated installations.

"It's really the first turnkey solution that we're going to deliver to our customers as a security appliance," Perera said.

Microsoft made the announcement at its annual TechEd conference in San Diego.

Microsoft, which is two years into its Trustworthy Computing Initiative to make its software more reliable and secure, is not only focusing on improving its Windows desktop, it's also looking to sell security software to businesses.

Many businesses have adopted appliance security products as a way to make their internal networks more secure with a minimum of hassle.

Microsoft and HP said they were able, in some instances, to get their new offering, with the ISA Server running on an HP blade server, up and running in three minutes.

ISA Server 2004 will be available in the third quarter of 2004, at a price of $1,499 per main microprocessor chip, per server, Microsoft said.

Story Copyright  © 2004 Reuters Limited.  All rights reserved.