• United States
Executive Editor

Gartner: Aventail and Neoteris lead SSL pack

Apr 29, 20032 mins

* Aventail and Neoteris best-in-class, Gartner says

Vendors of Secure Sockets Layer-based remote access gear have been jumping up and down on one foot for months now waiting for results of a Gartner Group study of them and their competitors.

Well they can stop dancing now because the results are in( and two vendors, Aventail and Neoteris, have come out on top.

These Gartner studies are pretty famous, and always include a graph with two axes, each representing some qualitative evaluation of whatever is being studied. The graph is divided into quadrants, with the one on the upper right being the good one because it represents the high end of both criteria. Gartner calls it the Magic Quadrant and companies landing there are dubbed leaders.

For its SSL remote access study, Gartner measured “ability to execute” on one axis and “completeness of vision” on the other.

Ability to execute included factors such as control of customer mindshare, a variety of offerings for different price ranges and flexibility in writing contracts, endorsement by customers and healthy finances.

Vision criteria included control of industry mindshare, a broad spectrum products and features, enterprise focus, and extras beyond remote access.

Aventail’s virtues: the widest range of client, server and managed-service options. Neoteris’s: solid, well-explained appliance plus effective and aggressive sales tactics.

This is all interesting for chit-chat, but it doesn’t really help you decide what to buy. In fact, Gartner acknowledges, “…vendors from any quadrant, as well as those not ranked may suit an enterprise’s requirements. Enterprises should consider any vendor that offers a superior price and solution for a well-defined problem.”

A more useful test is coming up. ICSA Labs, an independent division of TruSecure, in Herndon, Va., is preparing a certification program under which SSL remote access gear can be tested and found to be compliant or lacking. This could take awhile, but if you are just starting to consider SSL remote access, the results might be worth waiting for. It’s still pretty early on for this technology, with the total market so far amounting to less than $25 million a year, Gartner says. But it is expected to boom.