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HP has announced the ProCurve Secure Router 7000dl series, a branch office router range with built-in security and mobile access features. The kit starts shipping in April and is cheaper than Cisco equivalents, HP says.

By launching secure routers, HP is tapping into a growth area in anotherwise flat market. Worldwide enterprise router revenues were totalling $816m in 4Q04 and $3.4bn in 2004, down two per cent both for the quarter and the full year, analyst firm Infonetics Research estimates. Cisco dominates enterprise router sales with 84 per cent revenue share.

The ProCurve Secure Router 7000dl extends HP's ProcCurve networking range from the LAN switch into the router market. 7000dl series routers will connect enterprise branch offices to wide area networks. They incorporate a firewall to help protect against denial of service attacks and support 802.1X authentication, a popular means to bolster the security of wireless networks. The devices also offer Virtual Private Network features, providing a means for SMEs to roll out remote access to workers.

The first two products in the ProCurve WAN range are the 7102dl and 7203dl routers. The 7102dl has two slots and supports up to four T1/E1 connections. The 7203dl router features two slots and one wide slot to support modular WAN interface cards. It can support up to 12 T1/E1 connections. The 7102dl and 7203dl routers will cost between $1,499 and $2,999.

Switching is bitching

HP this week alsoannounced the April 2005 availability of an Access Controller Module for its ProCurve Switch 5300xl hardware. The technology costs from $5,499 and designed to remove the need for authentication software on a user's client, making it easier to roll-out secure WLAN access in larger organisations. In addition to web-based authentication, the Access Controller Module provides bandwidth control, misconfigured service management and proxy redirection.

Earlier this month HP improved its 5300 switches and ProCurve Manager with HP Virus Throttle, software that restrict the spread of computer viruses on corporate LANs. Virus Throttle focuses on the behaviour of malicious code rather than on its content. This enables response to previously unseen threats without having updated anti-virus signatures. By slowing or blocking suspect traffic until administrators have time to act. Connection-rate filtering in the ProCurve Switch 5300xl enables users to avoid the debilitating bandwidth-hogging effects of worms such as Nimda.®

Related stories

HP raises wireless profile
HP talks networks
Cisco overhauls security line-up
Cisco ups sales, misses estimates

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