Microsoft Releases New ISA Server Edition
- By Scott Bekker
Microsoft Corp. has segregated its well-received Internet
Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server into two different products with Release
Candidate 2. The firewall and caching server RC-2 is being shipped to early
adopter customers this week in two flavors: Enterprise Edition (EE) and
Standard Edition (SE).
ISA’s chief functions - security, caching, management, performance
and extensibility – remain the same for both versions. It’s what you can run it
on that’s different. The SE version is limited to one machine with a maximum of
four processors, and local policy only. The EE version has no hardware
limitations, supports enterprise- and array-level policies, and multi-server
arrays with centralized management.
Naturally, the beefier
version comes with a heftier price: $5,999 per processor for EE, and $1,499 per
processor for SE.
ISA Server has received a
number of positive reviews in the press, including one from ENT. It also did
well in the recent Measurement Factory Inc.’s Cache-Off, considered one of the
industry’s premier competitions. In overall requests/second per $1,000,
Microsoft’s ISA SE entry came in at the top with 145, and finished in the top 5
for both raw performance and bandwidth savings.
The ISA beta code was
released in June, and the full product is still on schedule to be released by
the end of the year, according to Microsoft.
The announcement of the
ISA versions contains some irony for Microsoft, coming as it does on the heels
of the recent hacking
of Microsoft’s internal network. After all, the “S” in ISA stands for Security.
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.