Review: webNetwork

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Review: webNetwork

Although this product is easy to use, it requires a lot of configuration. The main program is set up on a server via a simple-to-use wizard. Once installed, its interface is organized with a clumsy tree menu to the left and a configuration menu on the right. The menus can be confusing and awkward to work with.

Although this product is easy to use, it requires a lot of configuration. The main program is set up on a server via a simple-to-use wizard. Once installed, its interface is organized with a clumsy tree menu to the left and a configuration menu on the right. The menus can be confusing and awkward to work with.

Stoneware's WebNetwork allows for secure clientless SSL VPN. Features include the ability to integrate with Microsoft terminal servers as well as Citrix Metaframe servers. WebNetwork also includes a feature called personal desktop. This allows users to access their own desktops remotely through a secure SSL connection. Unique in this product is its integrated portal technology.

The WebNetwork uses only a few authentication methods. It will interoperate with Active Directory or Novell's eDirectory. However, it does have its own authentication server built in. This server will check to see if the user is a valid WebNetwork user. From there, a user must pass all security and password restrictions.

The WebNetwork comes with three manuals: a quickstart and evaluation manual introduces you to the product and what it can do, while a guide functions as a help file explaining features in depth. Finally, there is also a main, 900-page PDF manual that shows all aspects of the product in great detail. All documentation is easy to understand complete with screenshots and diagrams.

The company offers downloads and updates, product documentation, a knowledgebase, a technical FAQ and quick-start tutorials as part of its support options. Phone and email support is also provided.

The WebNetwork offers a lot of functionality for its price. However, it does require space on a server, so your VPN may only be as secure as your server. Stoneware also offers an appliance format of the product.

For: A lot of functionality, including the ability for users to remotely control their desktops via an SSL connection
Against: Requires space on a server, which could lead to security risks
Verdict: This clever product, provided on a thumb drive for easy installation, is good value for mid-sized companies.

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