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September 2006

Content inspection accelerator cards rev up application-layer security

Safe At Any Speed? Content-inspection accelerators rev up application-layer security. Here's the dilemma: How do you handle staggering traffic loads and maintain the gigabit-plus speeds required to keep your business running, and still combat application-layer threats in real time? The answer may be in the new content-inspection accelerator market, whose three early entrants--NetLogic, Sensory Networks and Tarari--offer chips and boards that offload signature- and pattern-matching processes from CPUs. "Increasing network data rates hit certain bottlenecks; the first was encryption," says Bob Wheeler, analyst for The Linley Group and coauthor of the report, "A Guide to Security and Content Processors." "These companies focus on a different bottleneck in apps such as antivirus, content filtering and antispam that look into the payload of every packet--a very memory-intensive processing task." The key is accuracy and low-latency, says Ratinder Paul Singh Ahuja, COO/ CTO of Reconnex, whose iGuard appliances, using Tarari ...

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