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Where the Cloud Touches Down: Simplifying Data Center Infrastructure Management

Thursday, July 25, 2013
10:00 AM PT/1:00 PM ET

In most data centers, DCIM rests on a shaky foundation of manual record keeping and scattered documentation. OpManager replaces data center documentation with a single repository for data, QRCodes for asset tracking, accurate 3D mapping of asset locations, and a configuration management database (CMDB). In this webcast, sponsored by ManageEngine, you will see how a real-world datacenter mapping stored in racktables gets imported into OpManager, which then provides a 3D visualization of where assets actually are. You'll also see how the QR Code generator helps you make the link between real assets and the monitoring world, and how the layered CMDB provides a single point of view for all your configuration data.

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A Network Computing Webinar:
SDN First Steps

Thursday, August 8, 2013
11:00 AM PT / 2:00 PM ET

This webinar will help attendees understand the overall concept of SDN and its benefits, describe the different conceptual approaches to SDN, and examine the various technologies, both proprietary and open source, that are emerging. It will also help users decide whether SDN makes sense in their environment, and outline the first steps IT can take for testing SDN technologies.

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IPSec Vs. SSL: Picking The Right VPN

Organizations often base their VPN choice on cost, configuration and usability. If you're looking for a network-to-network VPN, the only real choice is IPsec. Check Point Software Technologies, Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks, Nortel Networks, Sonicwall and WatchGuard all offer IPsec VPNs with integrated firewalls. If you go this route, look at the vendor's customer-support track record, determine if security is built into its product and find out what features will be available down the line.

The Easier Path?

IPsec VPN solutions generally are a lot easier to manage. The client-to-gateway tunnel forms a network connection similar to that of dial-up networking. Ephemeral TCP/UDP ports are natively supported. If your traveling users are employing SIP (Session Initiation Protocol)- or H.232-based applications, IPsec has a clear advantage over SSL VPN because it's hands-free on the client side. Once the software is running, users interact with their software and remote services seamlessly.

The IPsec VPN is an open network from the desktop client to the destination network, but that doesn't mean the desktop is just an IP router. Because of the possible split tunneling problem--simultaneous access to a trusted and a nontrusted network--you can limit access through policies set on the IPsec gateway. However, as SQL Slammer demonstrated, a worm-infected host that connects to an internal network over IPsec can infect the internal network. Use the embedded IPsec gateway firewall or place a firewall between the gateway and the rest of the network for added protection.

The leading IPsec VPN gateways from Cisco and Nortel are easy to manage and offer hierarchal group management, tight integration with external authentication servers and extremely useful and detailed event logging on the gateway. The latter is critical when troubleshooting remote-user connection problems.


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