IBM to Reveal Electronic Business Initiatives

IBM Corp. tomorrow will formally announce a raft of new products and services designed to help corporate users distribute data and applications more securely over the Internet for conducting business electronically.

IBM will also debut virtual private network (VPN) enhancements with beefed up security features that allow users to more safely share important information across an enterprise to users in remote offices or to their suppliers and business partners.

Through software upgrades, IBM has added new functions to its 2210 Nways Multiprotocol Router, its 2212 Access Utility Router, and the 2216 Nways Multiaccess Connector which offers access to and from LANs to the Internet, an intranet, or a corporate extranet, company officials said.

Other enhancements to these products include broader protocol support and expanded VPN functionality to extend bandwidth for a range of electronic business applications The 2216 Nways Connector and 3746 Multiprotocol Controller, which both provide access to IBM mainframe-based applications over the Internet, now provide better support for VPNs through more sophisticated security enhancements. The IBM Network Utility also includes new capabilities for voice traffic forwarding over frame relay networks.

IBM's 2212 Access Utility Router, which offers connections to corporate networks and the Internet for remote offices, has been enhanced with X.509 Digital Certificate Support which provides user authentication for Internet Key Exchange and Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) support so users can better administer and configure their VPN policies using a central directory server.

The 2210 Nways Multiprotocol Router, aimed at both enterprises and smaller businesses, also has been improved with X.509 and LDAP support, along with Layer 2 Forwarding and Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol that offers interoperability with legacy L2 tunneling systems.

Officials on Tuesday will also outline the company's plans for secure network access to its S/390 mainframes that are being used for Web serving.

As an added services offering, IBM will also preview a multi-tiered support program that will be available through IBM's Global Services (IGS). IGS will work in concert with IBM's Networking Hardware Division to piece together a new framework that allows corporate customers more flexibility in choosing which level of service best meets their needs.

The new program consists of a three-tiered approach to warranty and maintenance for certain IBM networking hardware.

IBM Corp., in Armonk, N.Y., can be reached at www.ibm.com.

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