Danish security company Armorlogic released a free version of its Profense Web application firewall. Based on OpenBSD, the product runs on your hardware and is a scaled down version of the company's full-featured Web application firewall.

Armorlogic describes Profense as a whitelisting firewall where only approved URLs and form input are allowed to pass through to a Web application. The firewall learns from traffic sent to and from an application. The firewall is capable of working as part of a cluster of Profense systems that can help balance Web traffic loads.

However, the free version does carry limitations not present in the company's Profense Professional product. For example, the free version doesn't include access logging but does include a denial log that tracks denied Web requests. Free versions must also be updated manually by reinstalling the latest version. The Professional version can be updated without re-installation. A side-by-side comparison of features is available on the company's Web site

The company said that an advantage of using a software-based Web application firewall as opposed to a hardware-based appliance is that administrators have better control over their environment in case of hardware failure and gain a lower cost of recovery. Having the firewall available as a ready-to-run software platform also allows customers to run the firewall in a virtual machine (VM) environment.

The free version, Profense Base, is available for download as an ISO image. Armorlogic said the Professional version costs 5,000 Euros including one year of support. After the first year Web and email-based support can purchased for 2,000 Euros per year and telephone support can be added for an additional 500 Euros per year.