Review: ActivPack AAA Server

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This is a comprehensive and flexible product upon which may be built an equally comprehensive access security model. It is scalable and facilitates the management of both local and remote network access within various environments and, if required, across multiple authentication servers.

This is a comprehensive and flexible product upon which may be built an equally comprehensive access security model. It is scalable and facilitates the management of both local and remote network access within various environments and, if required, across multiple authentication servers.

The potential and flexibility on offer might seem daunting, but implementation need not be, as existing LDAP directories may be used to good effect with little or no modification to get started with existing attributes and groups.

Smartcards, USB keys and tokens are all supported and a variety were supplied for this review.

Access requests are centralized via the ActivPack Authentication Server which is administered by the ActivPack Administration Console.

This may be viewed as the default option together with the Microsoft Access database component, but other SQL ODBC databases may be supported. By default, separate (Access) databases are created to support the Administration Console and Authentication Database.

All of this ties together to correlate your user directory attributes and authentication token details within an overall security policy.

The Administration Console provides much potential functionality, but there should be a clear strategy and associated objectives prior to implementation. As with the ActivCard Gold Desktop, this is a mature product for security professionals and requires serious attention and expertise from those seeking to use it to good effect.

ActivPack Server is supported with excellent documentation that covers all aspects of installation and configuration. It is complemented by a quick-start guide and other information which should cover most eventualities .Furthermore, as ActivPack supports most of the leading network components, it should be easily deployed across contemporary infrastructures.

In short, if you are looking for an enterprise-level product to support local and remote access with a choice of authentication devices and which will easily integrate with your existing infrastructure while offering future scalability, then the ActivPack AAA Server is worthy of your attention.

With the client software and appropriate ActivCard authentication devices, this is a flexible and robust solution.

For:

Comprehensive LDAP-centric approach.


Against:

Nothing significant.


Verdict:

A good foundation for enterprise-wide security.

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