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February 2, 2007

Microsoft Launches Intelligent Application Gateway 2007

Posted by David Hunter at 2:06 PM ET.

Press release:

Feb. 1, 2007 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the general availability of Intelligent Application Gateway (IAG) 2007. IAG 2007 combines the secure sockets layer virtual private networking (SSL VPN) and Web application firewall product obtained in the acquisition of Whale Communications in July 2006, with the Microsoft® Internet Security and Acceleration Server (ISA Server), integrated to provide a single, consolidated appliance for network perimeter defense, remote access, endpoint security management and application-layer protection. More information about ISA Server and Whale Communications can be found at

IAG 2007 is now available in pre-installed and configured appliances manufactured by Celestix Networks Inc. and Network Engines Inc. and sold through a wide range of reseller partners. To meet the needs of security resellers and make SSL VPNs more affordable for all customers, Microsoft has simplified pricing and licensing for IAG 2007, which will now include all-in-one pricing for the gateway, and all Intelligent Application Optimizers, Network Connectors and security modules developed for business-critical applications to implement specific client-side and enhanced application-layer security policies. In addition, client access licenses will now be based on the number of authenticated users or devices connecting to IAG appliances rather than on concurrent users, providing customers with more flexible and scalable pricing and licensing.

IAG is the old Whale Communications brand name.

Note also that IAG 2007 is only available on hardware:

IAG 2007 is available only as an appliance, and Microsoft’s OEM partners will provide the hardware frontline services and support for the product, said Sloss. The Redmond, Wash.-based vendor has partnered with Network Engines and Celestix Networks and is looking for additional partners, he said.

“The OEMs will own that relationship with the customer and provide maintenance and front line support. There’s a real opportunity for additional revenue,” said Sloss.

Also in related Microsoft security news:

Microsoft also announced its has signed up more than 100 networking and security partners to support Network Access Protection, the vendor’s long awaited network access control product, which will be ready for widespread use when Longhorn Server launches later this year.

There is more in the NAP press release.

Filed under Celestix, Coopetition, ISA Server, Microsoft, Network Access Protection, Network Engines, OS - Client, OS - Server, Servers, Technologies, Whale Communications, Windows Server 2008, Windows Vista

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January 27, 2007

Microsoft Weekly Miscellany, January 27, 2007

Posted by David Hunter at 11:40 AM ET.

Some Microsoft news items from this week that did not find posts of their own:

Ed Bott notes the first appearance of Vista OEM prices (for smaller OEMs) and Microsoft Answers ‘Vista OEM’ Questions. If you actually need to buy a retail copy of Vista, hopefully you’re savvy enough to not pay full price. Best line:

Going OEM means you don’t get the skimpy manual or other scraps of paper that comes with the regular retail version. But when (was) the last time a basic Microsoft manual told you anything you needed to know?

For a completely different demographic: Yes, there is a Windows Vista Starter Edition.

Microsoft released the software development kits (SDKs) for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007, and the Microsoft Office Project 2007 platform.

Shocking news: Microsoft hurt by poor Live branding, analysts say.

Stop me if you have heard this one before: Symantec warns of new zero-day Word attack. This one too: Windows Defender Lets Spyware Slip onto Vista PCs.

Nintendo profits soar and the Wii now does the Internet – Wii news channel debuts early. Meanwhile, Sony’s PlayStation 3 to Debut in Europe, Mideast, Africa and Australia on March 23.

Two Major Linux Groups Merge to Fight Microsoft

The two main evangelizers of the Linux operating system, Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) and the Free Standards Group (FSG), are merging to form the Linux Foundation.

LiMo arrives for mobile Linux:

The duopoly of Windows Mobile and Symbian is to face its biggest challenge yet, with six big names in mobile telephony backing the development of a new Linux-based software platform for mobile phones.

The founders of the LiMo Foundation are handset makers Motorola, NEC, Panasonic and Samsung, plus two big operators – NTT DoCoMo and Vodafone

Network Engines Selected By Microsoft to Support Existing Whale Communications Customers.

Filed under Alliances, Coopetition, Defender, General Business, Licensing, Linux, Marketing, Motorola, NTT, Network Engines, Nintendo, OS - Client, OS - Server, Office, Open Source, Project, Project Portfolio Server, Project Server, Samsung, Servers, SharePoint Server, Sony, Symbian, Technologies, Vodafone, Whale Communications, Windows Mobile, Windows SharePoint Services, Windows Vista, Xbox

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January 5, 2007

Microsoft Weekly Miscellany, January 5, 2007

Posted by David Hunter at 8:22 PM ET.

A Tale of Two Keynotes (from Michael Gartenberg):

Forget for a moment what’s going to be announced next week. It’s interesting to note that while there’s lots of speculation about what Mr. Jobs will announce on Tuesday, there’s almost no chatter that I see about what Mr. Gates will speak about on Sunday evening.

In case this is too obtuse, he’s talking Macworld and CES.

Google wins eyeball auction for China’s largest mobile phone provider, China Mobile. Reportedly 300 million subscribers. Google also announced a partnership with a Chinese peer-to-peer file downloading service, Xunlei Networking Technologies. The Xunlei website does 50 million downloads a day.

Microsoft’s Achilles Heel: Office

Microsoft patched a total of 41 critical vulnerabilities in its various Office products last year, accounting for more than one third of the 104 “critical” flaws the company patched in all of 2006.

Office also plays a prominent role in so-called “targeted” attacks.

Gartner says Vista isn’t done. Heck, who cares about drivers and application compatibility? However, the drive makers say there will actually be hybrid hard drives using Vista’s ReadyDrive feature in the first quarter.

Speaking of Gartner, Microsoft wants you to know that ”Microsoft Corp. is positioned in the “Visionaries” quadrant of the SSL VPN Magic Quadrant, published recently by Gartner Inc.” I guess that means Microsoft’s acquisition of Whale Communications was a good idea.

Xbox 360 refresh named Zephyr on the way? Maybe, but don’t hold your breath because it’s supposed to use the 65nm CPU that was reported last week to be delayed to mid 2007.

OpenAjax Woos Microsoft:

As the OpenAjax Alliance nears its one-year anniversary, the software developer and vendor consortium is making headway toward its goal of standardizing AJAX technologies — and it may even lure into the fold the industry’s most notorious standards scofflaw, Microsoft.

“They look at this point like they’ll probably join,” said David Boloker, IBM’s CTO for emerging technologies and the chair of OpenAjax’s steering committee. “They’re going through the legal documents.”

Live testimony has started in Microsoft’s Iowa antitrust trial with Ronald Alepin, an expert witness for the plaintiffs. Microsoft’s legal team was able to get the judge to limit his testimony.

Last but not least, Microsoft has put out a tongue-in-cheek web comic book to promote Office 2007. Not bad actually, but most things are better than the dinosaur heads and everything is better than Microsoft’s recent viral advertising efforts. Still, my favorite current Microsoft ad is from the “The Difference is Obvious” campaign for Visual Studio. Talk about appealing to primal urges – the coder who uses Visual Studio gets a better laptop, a BMW to replace his bicycle, and quite likely the girl. (It looks even more appealing in the full page print ads.)

Filed under Acquisitions, Antitrust, Apple, CES07, Conferences, Coopetition, General Business, Google, Legal, Marketing, Microsoft, OS - Client, Office, OpenAjax, Security, Servers, Standards, Whale Communications, Windows Vista, Xbox

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November 14, 2006

Microsoft rolls out more Forefront security apps

Posted by David Hunter at 5:50 PM ET.

Ted Kummert, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President, Security, Access and Solutions Division:

Today we are announcing key security products across the client, server and network edge, which map to our customer promise to help protect information and control access. First, we are excited to announce the public beta for Microsoft Forefront Client Security, a new product that helps protect business desktops, laptops, and server operating systems from viruses, spyware, and other threats. Second, we are announcing two new server security products, Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server and Microsoft Forefront Security for SharePoint, which are currently in public beta, and will be available to volume-licensing customers in December. Finally, today we are unveiling new Application Optimization features for the Intelligent Application Gateway, a product included in Microsoft’s acquisition of Whale Communications this year.

While all are of importance, Microsoft Forefront Client Security is drawing the most buzz since it’s a stake pointed right at the heart of the lucrative corporate security market which has heretofore been dominated by Symantec, McAfee, and other third party ISV’s whose relationship with Microsoft has grown so rancorous lately. More information and the Client Security beta download are here.

Filed under Beta and CTP, Coopetition, Forefront, McAfee, Microsoft, Servers, Symantec, Whale Communications

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