Insights from the industry
Mitigate IPv6's Fright Factor
Today everyone is competing for IP addresses. Rather than jump into the complex realm of IPv6, many companies are scrambling to maximize their IPv4 allocations—an increasingly challenging prospect as IP addresses become scarce. (Some analysts predict that, by around 2010, we'll run out of IPv4 addresses.) IPv4 supports 4.3 billion addresses, which can't hope to fully support the exploding mobile-device market. By contrast, IPv6 supports 50 octillion addresses. That number would provide an IP address to just about every atom on Earth.
However despite its greater capacity, "IPv6 scares everyone!" said David Berg, director of product management at BlueCat Networks (http://www.bluecatnetworks.com). "It's incredibly complex." The solution is IP Address Management (IPAM), which promises to become the new industry standard in IPv6 management. BlueCat Networks is at the leading edge of this technology, developing end to-end IPAM solutions that overcome legacy limitations—such as laboriously tracking addresses in spreadsheets or homegrown databases—and let midsized to large enterprises get the most out of their IP infrastructure.
US Companies Ready for Preboot Security Solution
Secuware (http://www.secuware.com/en) sees opportunity for its Secuware Security Framework in the United States. The Spanish company recently opened an office in Silicon Valley in response to requests by large US customers such as Wal-Mart, said Feliciano Rivera, who will head up the US operation.
Carlos Jimenez started Secuware in 1988 after selling his antivirus software company to McAfee and deciding that he wanted to create a better solution for keeping enterprises secure. The result, Secuware Security Framework, comprises a module that authenticates the user before Windows boots, encrypts the user's computer, and features modules for device and application control and security event auditing.
Secuware already has large customers in Spain's Ministry of Defense as well as in other European countries and in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Jimenez and Rivera believe that large enterprises in the United States—and smaller businesses that handle sensitive information, such as healthcare providers—are also ready for Secuware's comprehensive security infrastructure.
Can You Recover Critical Data in Seconds?
I recently spoke with Symantec Corporation (http://www.symantec.com/index.htm) about what the company calls its biggest feature release ever, Backup Exec 11d. Frank Mong, senior director of product marketing, and Brian Greene, director of product management, told me that Backup Exec 11d's development has been driven by its customers. Symantec's customers, like everyone else, need to shrink backup windows and reduce storage media costs. But an even greater need exists for backup and recovery customers: Businesses want to protect their data on and off site but, even more important, want granular recovery in their applications—that is, recovery of critical data within seconds.
With Backup Exec 11d, administrators can recover individual Microsoft Exchange Server messages, folders, and mailboxes; Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 documents; Active Directory (AD) users and properties; and SQL Server 2005 snapshots. And if you want secure backup data, Symantec offers both 128-bit and 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) encryption.
High Availability Keeps RIM BlackBerry Users Connected
Executives were the first—and sometimes the only—employees —to have a BlackBerry. Now, it often seems that all employees have one. Neil Robertson, Neverfail Group's (http://www.neverfail group.com) CEO, told me during a recent industry briefing that, by functioning as a mobile PC, the BlackBerry has transitioned from an email tool to a complete business tool that is capable of running software applications under an OS. Because of this added functionality, employees now expect to be able to reach their corporate network at any time, prompting what Robertson sees as an "interesting proliferation of applications to the \[BlackBerry\] tool."
Neverfail recognized that, in many businesses, productivity has become dependent on an employee being able to access the network from his or her mobile device at all times. So the company created a high-availability product: Neverfail for RIM BlackBerry. If a company's primary server goes down, Neverfail for RIM BlackBerry seamlessly switches users' workloads to a backup server so that mobile connectivity remains unbroken and productivity is not affected. When IT brings the network back online, the solution instantly switches users back to the original, primary server.
According to Robertson, Neverfail for RIM BlackBerry, and products like it, represent only the beginning of the growth of mobile device applications and their impact on business. "Currently, screen size is the only limiting factor; in two years all mobile devices will have the ability to do everything a PC can do," said Robertson.