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News Roundup: UC, Storage and Security

Cisco is extending its Jabber unified communications client to virtualized workspaces with its new Virtualization Experience Media Engine (VXME). The software lets virtual desktop users access Jabber collaboration capabilities including voice, HD video, presence and IM.

The VXME software is part of the company's strategy to bring collaboration capabilities to virtual desktops. It will initially be available for Cisco thin clients. Support for third-party devices such as Dell Wyse and Windows-based thin clients and Windows PCs will follow. In the meantime, Cisco is supporting new desktop peripherals designed by Jabra and Logitech that allow Jabber for Windows users to customize their virtual workspaces, including a standalone speaker phone and a webcam that supports HD video.

Core Security Upgrades Pen Test Software

Core Security has released the latest version of its vulnerability and penetration testing software, CORE Impact Pro 2013. The software lets enterprises test their IT infrastructure to find out where and how critical data might be threatened. It also includes a new capability, called CloudCypher, which takes hashed Windows passwords discovered during testing and attempts to figure out the plain-text version. CloudCypher is an online service hosted by Core

Other features of CORE Impact Pro 2013 include a network remediation validation wizard that can retest risks that have already by identified to check that they've been remediated. The latest version of Core's software also boasts more granular reporting. Users can select reports for specific hosts rather than run the report on all hosts within a workspace. The product includes reports for PCI vulnerability validation and host-based activity. CORE Impact Pro 2013 is also supported by the company's library of more than 2,800 commercial-grade exploits and attack techniques.

Drobo Adds SSDs, Tiering

Drobo has introduced network storage for the SOHO market featuring SSD and tiering support. The Drobo 5N is part the of the company's new line of storage products that already includes the Drobo 5D and the Drobo Mini. The 5N is the first time the company has incorporated its SSD and tiering technology into a networked storage device. The product uses an SSD drive to improve access to stored data. Customers can also use hard disk drives or SSDs for storage.

The Drobo 5N includes new data protection capabilities; it writes all critical data to non-volatile storage to keep it safe, even in the event of power loss. It also has the ability to automatically keep data in a protected state even in the advent of a drive failure, and supports hot-swapping of drives with no downtime. The 5N is available now starting at $599.

Sourcefire Launches Incident Reponses Service

Sourcefire has launched the new Incident Response Professional Services option for customers of its FirePOWER and FireAMP systems. Sourcefire's Incident Response team can investigate the methods of an attack, develop countermeasures to stop ongoing incidents and ensure that measures are in place to protect against future incidents. Sourcefire says the service available now. Pricing varies depending on deployment, organization size and the nature of the threat.

Check Point Software launched a similar service in November, dubbed ThreatCloud Incident Response, which also helps enterprises deal with a security attack in progress or recover from one.

Fortinet Expands Security Appliances

Fortinet's new line of security products target companies with distributed networks, such as retailers, that can't afford to put IT pros in every location. The company rolled out six new devices, including four FortiGate network security appliances that bundle firewall, IPS and antivirus: the FortiGate-60D, FortiWifi-60D, FortiGate-60C-POE and the FortiGate 60CM-3G4G-B. Both 60D appliances make use of the company's new dual core, SOC2 ASIC technology and are designed to reduce power consumption while providing greater port density. Meanwhile, the FortiGate-60C-POE and FortiGate 60CM-3G4G-B are both focused on delivering enterprise-class security for distributed locations, branch offices and retail networks.

Also focused on distributed remote locations are Fortinet's 12-port FortiSwitch124B-POE and the 24-port FortiSwitch-224B-POE Gigabit PoE managed switches, which support converged network applications including voice, video and data. All six products are shipping now.