This IPS (the renamed UnityOne-50) is the baby of TippingPoint's range, able to support throughput of up to 50Mbps – but the firm has a full range of products, able to cope with throughput up to five gigabits. The TippingPoint 50 has dual Fast Ethernet ports, so it can work inline with a connection and a dedicated management port.
It can be installed singularly or in active-active or active-passive high-availability mode.
Initial configuration, though, is performed using the LCD screen and cursor keys. Using this facility it only took us a few minutes to give the box an IP address, but TippingPoint recommends you use the console port on the front.
Once the device has an IP address, you can manage it via its web-based interface. For larger installations, the firm also has its Security Management System appliance, which lets you manage hundreds of IPS appliances and report on them centrally.
You will have to use Internet Explorer 6 or higher to manage the appliance via its web-based Local Security Manager (LSM), as Firefox is not supported. Once we logged onto the LSM, we found it one of the best on test.
It's powerful and incredibly easy to use. As with the other systems on test, you have to create a security policy that the appliance uses to scan traffic. This lets you choose which attack signatures you want to look out for and how you want to respond to detection.
Attack signatures are updated automatically on a weekly basis and are referred to as Digital Vaccines. But for new, harmful threats, Vaccines are created immediately and sent out, so you get very quick protection against zero-day threats.
The TippingPoint 50 engine will also scan for network anomalies providing real-time blocking, while you can also create your own attack signatures. The system comes with its own recommend filter settings, so you can just plug the box in and let it get on with its job without any management.
Reporting using the LSM is basic, but it gets a lot better if you opt for the SMS package. With a huge range of appliances to cope with any size network, this is a powerful, flexible system.
Opt for the SMS management appliance as well, and you have got an even more powerful system that is incredibly simple to manage.