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Vendors Push Virtual Security

With users voicing their concerns about the security challenges of virtualization, vendors are slowly cranking up their efforts to lock down virtual data. (See Tales From the Virtual Crypt.)

Today, for example, Virtual Iron teamed up with Reflex Security in an attempt to protect virtual data from denial-of-service (DOS) attacks, viruses, and worms. (See Virtual Iron, Reflex Security Team.)

The idea is that the Reflex Virtual Security Appliance (VSA) can check for threats on Virtual Iron virtual machines. Starting in the second quarter, the two firms will cross-sell each other's software, with prices for VSA starting at around $1,000 per CPU.

Reflex Security has already established a similar partnership with Virtual Iron's rival VMware and is also involved in talks with XenSource, according to Bob Darabant, Reflex's vice president of sales and marketing. "We're talking to almost every [virtualization] player," he says.

Whether this approach is enough to satisfy the long-term security needs of enterprise users remains to be seen. "Realistically, virtualization hasn't addressed the majority of security issues," explains Steve Reed, CTO of consulting and analyst firm Virtual Ngenuity, explaining that adding additional software brings more complexity to users' data centers. Instead, he says, virtualization vendors should focus on the hypervisors at the core of their technology.

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