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Microsoft Offers Web Caching with ISA 2000

Microsoft Corp.’s Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2000 addresses two of Microsoft’s primary platform foci – network infrastructure and Web infrastructure. ISA 2000 covers security and performance in a single product.

ISA is an update of Microsoft Proxy Server, but since it has more diverse and, presumably, more robust functionality, in many ways it is a first generation product.

The outer reaches of an enterprise network have begun to see applications designed to give outside users only the information they want to see. Caches serve up information closer to the user than traditional servers, while firewalls and network address translation keep malicious users from learning too much about the networks.

ISA performs cache management duties, moving content from the Web servers out to dedicated cache servers. Microsoft calls the caching technique “secure Web publishing,” since it reduces the need for users to access servers within the firewall. But Microsoft has thrown in additional security features as well.

Like its predecessor, ISA has proxy server and firewall features, obscuring the guts of the network to outside users. It offers NAT to hide the IP address of users and servers.

ISA was unveiled in June at Microsoft TechEd in Orlando, Florida. A release candidate has been available to testers as a download on Microsoft’s Web site. – Christopher McConnell

Read ENT’s review of ISA 2000 (Sept. 20 issue)

Microsoft Adds Firewall and Caching product to Windows DNA (June 28 issue)

For Microsoft’s overview of ISA 2000, see www.microsoft.com/isaserver.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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