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Bay to support NT for access

The networking firm will offer Windows NT-based networks its Net access device for small businesses by the end of this month.

Bay Networks (BAY) will add support for Microsoft Windows NT-based networks to its Net access device for small businesses by the end of this month.

The move offers the latest evidence that various markets in the high-tech industry are rushing to offer hardware and software that supports NT along with the incumbent in local networks, Novell's NetWare operating system.

The software update for the BayStack Instant Internet line of Net access devices adds support for networks based on IP (Internet Protocol), branching out from its roots supporting IPX, the transmission protocol used by Novell. The hardware and software package allows a network to connect to the Net using a single IP address.

Other networking firms, such as 3Com and Ascend Communications, offer similar variations on the same theme.

The new software adds support for address translation, DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol), and various remote management options. The update also includes three proxy options, retaining the level of security that allows the box to essentially act as a firewall.

Investment bank Bear Stearns is among the beta testers for the software, using the boxes to implement VPN-style (virtual private network) connections, according to a Bay executive.

The software update is available for both the BayStack Instant Internet 100, announced last fall, and the 400 model, which has support for more users and a wider variety of connections.