Cisco revamps VPN software suite

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Cisco revamps VPN software suite

Cisco Systems has unveiled an updated version of its suite of applications for managing virtual private networks (VPNs) and other security features on Cisco networks.

CiscoWorks VPN/Security Management Solution (VMS) 2.0 includes Cisco Secure Policy Manager, Cisco VPN Monitor and Cisco Resource Manager Essentials, as well as tools to monitor Cisco Intrusion Detection System (IDS) software for protecting networks and servers.

The applications are Web-based, so administrators can monitor network and system security from a browser.

The Cisco VPN Monitor offers administrators a dashboard view of all VPN resources on the network, and supports three additional devices: Cisco 1700, 2600 and 3600 routers. The software lets managers monitor statistics such as the number of tunnels and sessions active in a corporate VPN, said Bob Yee, Cisco's product manager for VMS.

"You can do quite a bit of drill-down to determine what's happening with your firewalls," he added.

VMS 2.0 extends intrusion detection from networks to servers. A network-based IDS included in VMS 1.0 used software agents in Cisco network devices, along with a management console, to detect and prevent worm attacks, denial-of-service attacks and other threats to the network. VMS 2.0 includes IDS Host Sensor, which detects and prevents attacks against servers.

VMS was first unveiled in March to give administrators an integrated set of tools for managing security on Cisco networks. It includes software for configuring, monitoring and troubleshooting virtual private networks, firewalls and intrusion detection. The suite works as part of CiscoWorks2000, Cisco's platform for infrastructure management.

VMS 2.0 is available now in Windows and Sun Microsystems' Solaris versions, priced at $7,995 (£5,458).

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