XML security gateway vendor Vordel is launching version 5 of its product line at its Dublin user conference today. The most important part of the announcement is a move into aspect of the announcement is a move into SOA governance, often considered about as far from XML security as it's possible to get while staying within the SOA space. Though SOA product categories are converging, there's very little overlapping functionality between security gateways (hardware) and governance platforms (software).
However, Vordel isn't trying to compete with providers of UDDI registries: It still partners with other governance vendors, notably SOA Software and HP Systinet. Its governance features are focused on the code management and testing part of governance, usually called the repository, as well as policy enforcement.
Testing is handled by an upgraded version of its SOAPbox product, policy enforcement through the Policy Director, a new product in the v5 release. The Policy Director software is also able to manage multiple numbers of its XML Firewalls and XML Gateways (a more advanced version of the firewall), which should make the product much more scalable than before. Vordel says this capability is in response to demands from telecom carriers, the market in which it has had most success.
In addition to security, Vordel is now pitching its products as a way to help customers move from tactical use of XML to Web services and SOA. In this respect, its strategy looks very similar to that of Web services management vendors like SOA Software and Actional, with whom it will be in increasing completion. They are software-only and lack an XML firewall, whereas Vordel offers hardware or software but lacks management agents.
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