Intel Jumps on VPN Bandwagon
Expanding the site-to-site or remote connectivity options for businesses, Intel on Monday rolled out a set of VPN products designed to meet the needs of large enterprises and service providers that offer managed Internet services.
By offering secure data tunnels over the Internet, VPN services attempt to overcome hurdles associated with traditional enterprise connectivity arrangements, which typically employ multiple networks and protocols to link a corporate headquarters to branch office sites, Web sites, mobile users, and suppliers.
The new line of VPNs boost the performance and interoperability features of the products Intel gained through its acquisition of Shiva in February of 1999.
The Shiva products are targeted for use by small and medium-size businesses, Intel officials said.
For demanding, large-scale deployments, the NetStructure 3130 and 3125 VPN Gateways provide 95 mbps of throughput, unlimited remote clients, and 10,000 simultaneous tunnels.
Enterprise-level VPNs need high levels of throughput to handle the growing number of mobile workers and telecommuters, according to Intel officials.
"High throughput is important because more users are connecting via broadband, like DSL or cable, which sucks up more of the available bandwidth in the gateway," said Doug Smith, product line manager at Intel's Communications Products Group.
In addition, proving capability for a high number of simultaneous connections is vital to accommodate newer technologies such as wireless.
"The growing numbers of workers connecting wirelessly through cell phones or PDAs creates a demand for more simultaneous connections because there are just more and more ways to connect," Smith added.
For medium-size branch offices or small central sites, the NetStructure 3120 VPN Gateway offers 20 mbps throughput and 2000 simultaneous tunnels; the 3110 supports 2 mbps and 100 tunnels.
Intel said it will also offer a VPN software upgrade for its Express 8200 and 9500 routers to allow existing customers to integrate VPN, firewall, WAN access, and routing functionality without having to buy additional hardware componenets.
The Intel NetStructure 3110, 3120, and 3130 VPN Gateways will be available September 14, priced at $3495, $10,995, and $20,995, respectively. The 3125 VPN Gateway will be available November 22, priced at $20,995.