Secured, highly available, high performance Web applications
Is it a pipe-dream or an achievable goal? It better be achievable because enterprises are betting their futures on the next round of highly networked, widely-available, over-the-Internet applications. While some enterprises have been able to find work-arounds for today's web applications (e.g., only securing few parts of a page), most companies are forced into making untenable tradeoffs between application availability, performance, and security. However, as more sophisticated, mission-critical applications are developed for the corporate web interface enterprise will find that they cannot take chances with sending unsecured data on semi-public networks to improve application performance. When will this happen? Sooner than you think. The current buzz about Web Services and .NET vs. J2EE is evidence that these applications are in development.
THE HURWITZ TAKE: The importance of application performance and the privacy of the data transferred across the network increases as more businesses look to these next-generation applications to streamline their operations. Therefore, Hurwitz Group believes that enterprises cannot afford to treat availability, performance, and security as separate issues. Today, there are web optimization solutions to increase the performance of enterprise web applications; there are load-balancing solutions to increase the availability of web infrastructure and firewalls; there are solutions to identify and block denial-of-service attacks. However, enterprises and solution providers have been treating these as separate issues. The problem with this siloed approach is that it engenders the tradeoff decisions that prevent companies from getting the most out of their infrastructure.
Enterprises have to shift their thinking toward a more holistic approach that combines elements of data protection, application security, network availability, and traffic management. Vendors such as NetScaler are stepping up to help with Request Switching technology, which optimizes application traffic, manages the protection of critical application content, identifies and protects from malicious network attacks in a single solution. Hurwitz Group believes that this type of combination approach is the key to delivering secured, highly available, high performance web applications.
Copyright 2002 Hurwitz Group Inc. This article is excerpted from TrendWatch, a weekly publication of Hurwitz Group Inc. - an analyst, research, and consulting firm. To register for a free email subscription, click here.
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