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BlueCat simplifies net management chores

BlueCat Networks has added new features to its DNS appliances aimed at simplifying the management of networks running IPv4 and IPv6, the current and enhanced versions of the Internet Protocol.

BlueCat's Proteus 3.7, which ships today, includes a streamlined methodology for adding hosts, IP addresses and Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) information. It also features enhanced support for IPv6 with network management protocols such as Network Time Protocol (NTP), Secure Shell (SSH) and Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). And it has the ability to perform Layer 2 network discovery with the Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP) for IPv4 and IPv6.

QUIZ: How prepared are you for IPv6?

Another new feature is support for both VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V in BlueCat's Proteus IPAM platform and its Adonis DNS/DHCP software.

BlueCat officials said the overall theme of the upgrade is to make it easier for IT departments to delegate chores related to DNS and DHCP for networks running IPv4, IPv6 or both protocols.

"With every enterprise customer we have, the number of network administrators is static. They're not getting additional headcount, and yet they have a lot of high visibility projects, such as virtualization, private cloud, data center consolidation, VoIP, smart devices and the transition to IPv6," explained Brad Micklea, vice president of product management at BlueCat. "The challenge they face is that the DNS and DHCP are such critical and core capabilities, and only a subset of the network admin team is authorized to touch it."

Micklea said the latest version of Proteus allows companies to delegate management of network IP space and DNS namespace out to various groups without giving up security or centralized control.

"Kaiser Permanente is a big customer that has been instrumental in reviewing the prototypes," Micklea said. "Today, they have a group of five or six who manage DNS and DHCP. Now they can push those chores out from five to 100 people, which means huge savings. ... The need for these features has been fairly universal for our customers; the larger the organization, the greater the urgency of the need."

Read more about lan and wan in Network World's LAN & WAN section.

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