Juniper aims to ease and speed configuration of virtual gateways

Juniper Networks is introducing a virtual security gateway that integrates with its physical security gateway so customers need not configure their security zones twice when working in a mixed physical-virtual environment.

Building on its December purchase of Altor Networks, Juniper is announcing at the RSA Conference this week that the latest version of the Altor security software -- now called Juniper VGW (stands for virtual gateway) -- can align its policies with those of Juniper's SRX appliances.

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With the new VGA upgrade, the software can import from SRXes the security zone structure and policies, making sure the zones in each are identical and easing configuration.

Security zones separate users into groups and restrict their access to only those resources allocated to the group. With VGA and the new software, these zones remain intact if the resources migrate into the virtual environment or from physical server to physical server within the virtual environment. Security policies follow each virtual machine, and each virtual machine is identified with a unique identifier that stays with it throughout its lifetime.

Groups are assigned by an administrator as SRX zones.

Juniper says it envisions that both SRXes and VGWs will be deployed in data centers where SRXes will impose zones among groups of machines within the center and VGWs will impose smaller zones within those larger ones. The company says a similar model could be used by cloud service providers to separate customer resources from each other via SRXes and creating security zones within each customer's cloud environment.

VGW also supports imposing intrusion prevention on specific flows it monitors by mirroring them to the AppSecure IPS software within SRXes, the company says.

Juniper is also announcing that VGW fills a blind spot in its security threat response management (STRM) platform, which gathers and analyzes syslog and NetFlow data to flag possible trouble. Before, STRM had no view into events inside virtual environments, but VGW will provide that data.

VGW is available now. Pricing starts at starts about $4,000 per virtual host.

Read more about wide area network in Network World's Wide Area Network section.

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