High-Availability Software Just Got Cheaper

Rainfinity's new high-availability software, designed for smaller companies, is less expensive and requires less expertise to administer.

Rainfinity today sought to bring high availability for network connections out of the data center and into the hands of small business users, warehouses, remote offices and partner locations in the latest releases of its RainWall and RainConnect traffic-shaping tools.

RainWall 3.0, high-availability software for firewalls and VPN gateways, is more tightly integrated with Checkpoint Software Technologies Inc.s New Generation firewalls and adds the ability to fail over to nodes distributed across a campus or metropolitan area network. It can also be embedded into networking appliances and applications, according to officials at the San Jose, Calif., firm. Rain stands for Reliable Array of Independent Nodes.

The RainWall software, priced under $15,000 for a two-node cluster, is targeted at a broader market outside the Fortune 1000, where hardware load balancers can cost upwards of $40,000 a piece, according to Michael Disabato, analyst with Burton Group Inc. in Barrington, Ill.

"Theyve managed to lower the cost of this to where its affordable for a smaller company, and you can configure it in multiple ways (to lower deployment costs)," he said. "They understand once the market is saturated, you have to look at smaller firms with smaller budgets and shrink the product to fit those smaller firms," he added.

RainWall 3.0 was also enhanced with ease of use features so that it requires less expertise to administer, and it is better integrated with the 3.0 version of RainConnect.

RainConnect 3.0, which automates load balancing across multiple connections and fails over to backup Internet Service Provider (ISP) connections, adds support for client-to-site access and site-to-site VPNs. The tool intelligently distributes traffic among multiple ISP links from different providers. It can automatically detect Internet outages and reroute traffic, including VPN traffic, to a backup path.

RainConnect, priced at $6,000, allows users to move from more expensive T-1 links to less costly DSL or cable connections without sacrificing reliability. The new release also simplifies the process of setting up and managing multiple ISP connections.

Both tools, which are available now, take advantage of a new, simplified Web-based management console for configuration and monitoring.

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