Microsoft Adds NAP for Linux and Mac

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2007-11-13 Print this article Print

Network Access Protection is now deployed in more than 150,000 desktops worldwide, including 70,000 at Microsoft.

BARCELONA—Microsofts Network Access Protection platform is being extended to Linux and the Mac in heterogeneous network environments through third-party products. The Redmond, Wash. software maker announced at its TechEd IT Forum, here on Nov. 13, that UNETsystem will release Linux and Macintosh versions of its Anyclick for NAP (Network Access Protection) product next year.
Avenda Systems will release the Avenda Linux Network Access Protection Agent, which extends NAP technology to network endpoints running Linux, while Celestix Networks has developed an appliance for delivering the NAP policy-enforcement platform. These new appliances will hit the market shortly after Windows Server 2008 is released in February 2008.
Read here about Microsofts unified security strategy. Paul Mayfield, a product unit manager in Microsofts enterprise networking group, told eWeek that NAP was based on the concept that when a client attached to a network or server, their identity needed to be evaluated in addition to its compliance to a set of governance policies. "We have worked with UNetsystem and Avenda Systems, and we are working with others, to provide the ability for third party operating systems to report their identities and current compliance state to the network," he said. "Our servers then have policies that evaluate what rights those identities have and whether what is being reported in terms of compliance is indeed in line with company policies." But Mayfield declined to give any further specifics as to the exact audit functionality available in these products, except to say that they would be doing things like checking to make sure certain services were on or off, and making sure that certain ports were locked down. "I expect we will see more and more integration happening with third party antivirus over time, but I dont know whether thats included in this release," he said. To read about Microsofts push into the enterprise security market, click here. NAP is now deployed in more than 150,000 desktops worldwide, including 70,000 at Microsoft, which has also released a case study describing its NAP deployment. Check out eWEEK.coms Security Center for the latest security news, reviews and analysis. And for insights on security coverage around the Web, take a look at eWEEKs Security Watch blog.
Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


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