New VPN options from Check Point and Funk

Check Point Software Technologies and Funk Software have announced new products geared towards the client and server ends of...

Check Point Software Technologies and Funk Software have announced new products geared towards the client and server ends of virtual private networks (VPNs).

Check Point's VPN-1 Net and VPN-1 Pro products are new software releases aimed at companies that want to offer VPN security, but not the firewall product that Check Point normally sells with its VPN, said Raphael Reich, product marketing manager at Check Point. The products will appeal to telecommunication managers who need VPN connections, but not firewalls as they are not security managers, he said. A VPN is a secure method of connecting to a corporate network using the public Internet as if it were a component of the private network.

VPN-1 Net will appeal to companies looking to replace their frame relay or leased-line connections with a lower-cost alternative, Reich said. The software, which runs on Linux, Windows and Solaris, as well as any "Secured by Check Point" hardware, will offer the same features as Check Point's standard VPN-1 software, but also includes a number of preconfigured policies and is priced per VPN connection, he said.

VPN-1 Pro is the product formerly known as VPN-1 Gateway and offers one-click VPN deployments, VPN dashboard for management and VPN user monitor to more closely analyse individual connections, according to Reich. The product also supports the creation of VPN communities, or groups that have distinct policies applicable to them, as well as a "star topology" VPN network, a common configuration in networks that are migrating from wide area networks to VPNs, he said.

Both products are available as part of Check Point Next Generation Feature Pack 2, which is immediately available worldwide. The starting cost of VPN-1 Net is $1,000 (£699) for five VPN tunnels.

Menawhile Funk Software has announced the immediate availability of the beta version of its AdmitOne VPN client. The final version will be ready for sale in May, said Jeff Kleiman, director of engineering at Funk.

The client will allow Pocket PC users to connect to any VPN that complies with the IPSec (Internet Protocol Security) standard including those from Check Point, Cisco Systems, Nortel Networks and Alcatel.

The product is targeted at vertical markets and enterprises that are planning to deploy handhelds to their employees, said Rose Saia, chief strategy officer at Funk. Funk chose Pocket PC over the Palm OS as its initial platform for handheld VPNs because Pocket PC is more robust and more widely used in enterprise settings, she said.

The beta version of the AdmitOne VPN client is available now at Funk's Web site and will cost between $16 (£11) and $40 (£28) per user depending on volume when it is released, Kleiman said.

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