SSL VPN Marketplace: Leading vendors and links to reviews

 

I have been interested in SSL VPNs for some time, and the most recent article is a comparative review published in TechTarget's Information Security magazine's September 2006 issue. The review was conducted at a special lab on the Stanford University campus in June and examined products from Cisco, Checkpoint, Aventail, F5, and Juniper.

You'll notice that all of the comparative reviews recently omit Symantec and Cisco -- they don't seem to find the "right" time to get their products in front of the hands-on reviewers at the leading IT publications. Nevertheless, you can find links below along with the vendor's own sites and my own brief commentary on their positioning.

 

This page was last updated September 6, 2006. If you have additions or corrections, please send me an email.

 

Infoworld:

Not a very satisfying review of six products was done in Feb 2005 by Keith Schultz

http://archive.infoworld.com/reports/06SRsslvpn.html

 

Network World:

Joel Snyder's review in December 2005 of 11 products with Juniper coming out on top:

http://www.networkworld.com/reviews/2005/121905-ssl-test-intro.html?t5&story=121905-ssl-test-intro

 

Gartner's Magic Quadrant Report:

John Girard's December 2005 report http://mediaproducts.gartner.com/reprints/juniper/article2/article2.html

 

SC Magazine:

Over a dozen products tested by Rene Millman and others in October 2005

http://www.scmagazine.com/us/products/index.cfm?fuseaction=productListSubCategory2&sSubcatcode=NETSSL

 

Secure Enterprise/Network Computing:

A comparison of nine products done in August 2005 by Joanne VanAuken

http://www.secureenterprisemag.com/products/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=166400994

 

Breakaway Security Group:

Not a very critical site, but a good compendium of information and a nice page of links to vendor-sponsored white papers

http://sslvpn.breakawaymg.com/index.php

 

eWeek:

Andy Garcia’s 2004 test of 4 products:

http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1895,1585449,00.asp

 

 

 

 

Google

Current SSL Vendors

 

 

Vendor, link

Product Line

Strom's opionion of notable position and features

Ratings NWW, IW, NWC

Cost (IW, NWW, NWC)

AccessAnywhere Systems

AccessAnywhere

Managed services and product versions available

 

 

AEP Networks

AEP Netilla Security Platform

New acquisition, strong European presence

NWW: 3.3/5

IW: 8.0/10

NWW:$62,250

IW: $34,300

 

Array Networks

Array SPX

SSL acceleration and high-performance focus

NWW: 2.9/5

IW: 8.5/10

NWC: 3.8/5

NWW:$60,000

IW: $25,000

NWC: NA/$60,000

Aventail Corp.

Smart SSL VPN

Leading supplier to ISP/carriers, specialist in SSL VPNs

NWW: 3.6/5

IW: 8.4/10

NWC: 4.1/5

NWW: $39,000

IW: $28,000

NWC: $21,500/ $53,000

Caymas Systems

Identity Driven Access Gateway

Deep inspection access control

NWW: 3.6/5

NWC: 4.1/5

NWW: $45,000

NWC: $10,000/ $45,000

Check Point Software

Connectra

Broad base of complementary technologies

NWW: 3.3/5

NWC: 3.4/5

NWW: $79,000

NWC: $15,000/ $60,000

Cisco Systems

ASA and PIX appliances

Lagging behind technologically

 

 

Citrix Systems

Access Gateway

Lacks integration with diverse product lines

 

 

F5 Networks

FirePass

SSL acceleration and high-performance focus

NWW: 4.0/5

IW: 8.8/10

NWC: 4.3/5

NWW: $80,000

IW: $25,000

NWC: $28,000/ $70,000

Fortinet

FortiGate

Part of their security appliance feature set

NWW: 2.0/5

NWW: $30,000

Juniper Networks

 

SA product line from Neoteris/Netscreen

Market sales leader, Neoteris line finding further traction too.

NWW: 4.5/5

IW: 8.9/10

NWC: 4.5/5

NWW: $48,000

IW: $34,000

NWC: $7,000/ $59,000

Nokia Corporation

SSL VPN

Sales dropping, lagging behind on features

NWW: 4.2/5

IW: 7.9/10

NWW: $65,000

IW: $28,000

 

Nortel

VPN Gateway

Lagging behind on features

NWW: 3.3/5

NWC: 4.0/5

NWW: $26,000

NWC: $35,000/ $65,000

Permeo Technologies

Base5

Lacks portal but impressive features

NWC: 3.8/5

NWC: $10,000/ $50,000

PortWise

PortWise

Most complete mobile support

 

 

Sonicwall

SSL VPN 2000

New entry to the field, solid low cost hardware solution

NWW: 2.5/5

NWW: $2,300

Symantec

Sygate Enterprise Protection and

Enterprise Security Appliances

Integrated intrusion prevention and access control

 

 

Whale Communications/Microsoft

Intelligent Application Gateway

Low price point, high applications and email-specific coverage

NWC: 4.4/5

NWC: $27,000/ $72,000

 

Notes:

IW: Infoworld, cost per 100 users, 0-10 point scale

NWW: Network World, cost per TK users, 0-5 point scale

NWC: Network Computing/Secure Enterprise tests on both per 100 and per 1000 users, 0-5 point scale

 

© 2006 David Strom Inc.