Phantom Technologies iBoss Web Filter
Strengths: Very easy to deploy and configure with a flexible policy engine.
Weaknesses: None that we found.
Verdict: A highly comprehensive appliance with a great amount of flexibility makes the iBoss this month’s Best Buy.
SummaryThe iBoss Web Filter from Phantom Technologies is a full function web content management appliance with a lot of configurable features. This product goes beyond simple web content filtering and can be used to control access to game applications, peer-to-peer applications and instant messengers, such as AOL Instant Messenger and Yahoo! Messenger. This amount of flexibility provides a great deal of control over users in the environment. One of the most interesting features of this appliance is the ability for administrators to set up individual policies for specific users. A user who may need access to applications or sites blocked by the general policy can login via their web browser and gain access to these sites seamlessly.
We found the iBoss to be a simple straightforward install. The initial IP and network configuration is done by connecting to the box through a HyperTerminal session and simply typing in the numbers at the prompts. Once the IP address is configured, the rest of the setup and policy configuration is done through the web GUI. This web GUI has a clean organized look and is intuitive to navigate.
This tool can plug right into the existing Active Directory structure so that policies can be configured easily according to the group structure already in place. Policies are easy to configure and can be set up on a group, computer or user basis. These policies can include a number of ways of filtering or blocking internet content. Policies can be category or keyword-based or set by black and white lists.
Documentation provided with the iBoss includes a short quick installation guide that gives step-by-step instructions as to how to initially configure the network information and get the iBoss up on the network.
Phantom offers comprehensive phone and email support, as well as a nicely organized online support area on its website.
At a price of $1,500 with no extra per user fees, this product is a solid value for money. The iBoss offers an expansive feature set that is easy to use at a reasonable price.