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Mirapoint aims messaging appliances at SMBs

Feb 02, 20043 mins
Messaging AppsNetworkingSmall and Medium Business

Mirapoint last week announced a pair of e-mail gateway appliances designed to give small and midsize businesses and remote offices a high level of messaging security without a heavy administrative burden.

Mirapoint last week announced a pair of e-mail gateway appliances designed to give small and midsize businesses and remote offices a high level of messaging security without a heavy administrative burden.

The new line of appliances, called RazorGate, incorporate much of the software found in Mirapoint’s high-end Message Director appliance, but are geared for small organizations with limited IT staff and resources. The RazorGate 100 provides e-mail security for companies with up to 1,500 users, while the RazorGate 300 can be used in settings with up to 5,000 users, says Jeff Brainard, Mirapoint’s senior product marketing manager.

The new appliances sit at a company’s e-mail gateway to scan messages for spam and viruses, and also offer advanced content filtering, policy enforcement, intrusion detection and Simple Mail Transfer Protocol connection management. But unlike Mirapoint’s Message Director, the new appliances don’t require IT expertise to manage, Brainard says.

Mirapoint, which competes with secure messaging appliance makers including BorderWare, CipherTrust and IronPort, says the RazorGate products fill a need that other vendors aren’t meeting. “The problems in terms of spam and viruses that a small- or medium-sized firm faces are just as complex as those that a large firm faces, the difference is [smaller organizations] don’t have the IT staff, knowledge or resources in place to come up with a grand solution,” says Sara Radicati, an analyst at The Radicati Group.

To streamline administration, the RazorGate 100’s DirectPath technology lets the appliance scan incoming and outgoing messages in real time, Brainard says, instead of queuing incoming mail at the gateway. This means companies can install the box and walk away, he says, without needing to check on a mail queue’s progress or bottlenecks. Once scanned, e-mail is passed to the company’s mail server and never resides on the RazorGate 100.

For large organizations that need message queuing but still want an appliance that can be quickly deployed and easily managed, Mirapoint’s RazorGate 300 has a queue management feature and offers a temporary quarantine queue for messages that have been flagged as spam, Brainard says. The RazorGate 300 also routes messages to the appropriate mail server for organizations that run more than one. The 300 also includes redundant hardware for increased reliability and a “wiretap” feature that lets administrators scan users’ incoming and outgoing messages.

Both RazorGate appliances include administrator tools for producing logs and reports, such as statistics regarding which users receive the most spam. The new appliances can be configured with Mirapoint’s Full-Spectrum anti-spam technology and with anti-virus software from Sophos. When configured this way, the RazorGate 100 costs $12,500 for 300 users, and the RazorGate 300 costs $27,500 for 300 users.