RapidStream has just begun shipping in the U.S. a box called RapidStream 2200, a firewall\/VPN device based on Check Point software.The hardware is based on RapidStream's custom processors and claims to support Triple-DES VPN encryption at 120M bit\/sec. The company says the top firewall speed is 200M bit\/sec.In addition, the 2200 supports 400 simultaneous IPSec tunnels and up to 8,000 individual TCP\/IP sessions.According to RapidStream, the device is designed for ROBOs - the snappy acronym for remote office\/branch office. If the vendor's speed claims are accurate, they should be plenty fast enough to handle the 1.5M bit\/sec T-1 line or smaller that is likely serving such an office. RapidStream 2200 costs $5,000.RapidStream is a member of OPSEC, the partner alliance of Check Point, which provides software licenses to OPSEC members. In announcing availability of the device, RapidStream has chosen to compare its Check Point-based products with comparable ones from fellow OPSEC member, Nokia. As you might guess, RapidStream claims better performance for less money, which is certainly something potential customers should check out.More specifically, RapidStream claims better VPN performance as opposed to firewall performance. Its custom chips, RapidStream claims, perform better the more they are loaded up with traffic when compared to others in OPSEC. Firewalling isn't as demanding as encryption\/decryption from the processing point of view, so general processors can keep up with the added firewall load.RapidStream's decision to compare its products with those from other OPSEC members is likely a large headache for Check Point. The security software provider can't be thrilled about the bad blood between its partners that this direct-comparison may be creating. It is imaginable that this squabbling might force one of the members to look elsewhere for a software platform to power the machines.For customers, it can only be good if it encourages prospective buyers to thoroughly test devices before they decide to buy.