BorderWare 6.0: friendlier and faster

Mississauga, Ont.-based BorderWare Technologies Inc. has spruced up its flagship product, BorderWare Firewall Server, by improving its performance, adding a new user interface and increasing the number of supported hardware configurations.

John Pritchard, a consultant with Catalyst Solutions in Sioux City, Iowa, was particularly pleased with Version 6.0’s interface enhancements.

“It’s allowed me to be able to configure the firewall and to train the people who are actually implementing the firewall much more easily,” he said.

Paul Woroshow, vice-president of business development for Expert Systems Resources Inc., a Toronto-based BorderWare reseller, also noted the interface’s speed was “dramatically faster.”

Previous versions of the firewall server came with a Java-based Web browser, explained John Alsop, BorderWare’s president and CEO.

“That was not very popular with our customers, because it was perceived to be slow and a bit unwieldy.”

The new interface is a native Windows application, Alsop said, so it runs much more quickly.

Version 6.0’s performance, in terms of throughput and the number of simultaneous connections supported, is also better than previous releases, Alsop noted.

“We’re getting quite close to wirespeed performance on 100Mbps Ethernet connections,” he said.

Version 6.0 will run on any standard Intel PC platform, Alsop explained, whereas earlier versions didn’t run with certain network cards or drives.

The new version also incorporates integrated SmartGate VPN technology from V-One Corp., allowing remote users to have secure access to sensitive corporate data.

Alsop noted the V-One technology is also being included in Cisco Systems Inc.’s PIX Firewall.

The only feature Catalyst Solutions’s Pritchard would like to see included in Version 6.0 that isn’t included now is external access to POP mail. Currently, if people are out of the office, their POP mail has to be stored externally on a Web server if they want to access it.

Pritchard added, however, that allowing POP mail to be accessed externally through the firewall could be a potential security threat and might not be worth the convenience to many companies.

Because BorderWare Firewall Server consolidates all Internet gateway functions in one box, it’s ideal for small- to medium-sized enterprises, BorderWare’s Alsop said.

According to Pritchard, the largest BorderWare installation he has ever handled was a 300 to 350 workstation environment with T-1 access.

“Those clients I have who don’t have IT or IS staffs are where this fits in best,” he said. “They don’t have to have more than one server. They can handle Web presence, e-mail, DNS and firewall capability all in one box and it’s easy to manage and set up.”

BorderWare Firewall Server Version 6.0 ( is available now. BorderWare customers with support contracts can upgrade at no charge. Software licences start at US$2,400 and range up to US$23,000 for the enterprise licence pack.

BorderWare can be reached at 1-877-814-7900.