Review: SSH Secure Shell for Windows Server

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At the heavy duty end of the market, SSH Secure Shell for Windows Server offers enough security for even the most paranoid network administrator. Already recognized as one of the most popular applications for creating secure sessions in Unix, it is now available for Windows, replacing such protocols as Telnet or FTP with a hardened connectivity solution for those businesses that require more than usual security for data transfer.

At the heavy duty end of the market, SSH Secure Shell for Windows Server offers enough security for even the most paranoid network administrator. Already recognized as one of the most popular applications for creating secure sessions in Unix, it is now available for Windows, replacing such protocols as Telnet or FTP with a hardened connectivity solution for those businesses that require more than usual security for data transfer.

Sitting on a Windows NT/2000 platform, Secure Shell provides connectivity, authentication and encryption. Connectivity comes courtesy of secure TCP/IP port forwarding or X11 connection forwarding, but if that isn't enough for you there is a wealth of encryption options. SSH Secure Shell for Windows offers triple-DES, Twofish, Blowfish, Arcfour, CAST128, AES (Riijndael) and DES algorithms. It also supports RSA, digital signature algorithm (DSA) and Diffie-Hellman public keys, as well as hash algorithms. There is also the option to compress data to improve traffic flow.

Authentication is provided at both ends of the tunnel, and multiple authentication can be used if necessary. Basic password protection can be augmented by the addition of methods such as the aforementioned public keys, as well as RSA SecureID, including hardware tokens.

Installation is surprisingly simple for a product this powerful, and configuration is through a Windows-based GUI. There is also ample documentation. The experienced administrator can play around with the more advanced settings. SSH Secure Shell is completely scalable; the product can support an unlimited number of simultaneous sessions, making it ideal for the largest enterprise.

Because SSH Secure Shell for Unix has been in use for many years, SSH brings all of that experience to bear with the Windows version. Considerable effort has been made to ensure that ease of use is built into every part of the product, and even a novice user can be assured that they have installed and configured the product correctly.

Although not a content filtering application, it can be used in conjunction with them to provide one of the safest and secure environments it is possible to have. This is definitely a product to consider if you have to send and receive extremely sensitive or confidential information on a regular basis.

For:

Easy to install and packed full of security features.


Against:

None.


Verdict:

It is unusual to find a product this powerful which is so easy to install and use, and it is ideally suited for organizations that require total security.

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