New Internet Sharing Device from ZyXEL Enables SOHO and Small Businesses to Protect Their Connectivity Investments
ATLANTA, October 21, 1998 �V Growing businesses today are confronted with the issue of finding strategic ways to network their employees and share resources while minimizing the high costs of purchasing extra connectivity hardware. Complicating things is the fact that the modems and ISDN terminal adapters that they purchased in the not-too-distant past can no longer accommodate current levels of network traffic. As a solution to this problem, ZyXEL Communications today announced a new one-of-a-kind Internet access router designed to use a business�� pre-installed modems or terminal adapters to network employees and share Internet access.
The Prestige 100WH Internet Access Router attaches to an external modem, ISDN terminal adapter, or other WAN device, giving it full router capabilities. With a built-in 4-port 10BaseT hub, the Prestige 100WH can then be connected to a SOHO or corporate LAN, enabling all of its users to access the Internet or establish a LAN-to-LAN connection over a public or private network.
"Before the Prestige 100WH, businesses would have to discard their modems and terminal adapters in favor of more robust routers," said Munira Brooks, marketing director for ZyXEL. "Now, they can protect their connectivity investments by eliminating the need to purchase more costly routers. The Prestige 100WH also does away with the cost of installing extra phone lines and modems for every computer and cuts expensive phone and ISP line charges."
From an ease-of-use standpoint, the installation of the Prestige 100WH is as simple as plugging an external modem into the unit��s serial port (or a terminal adapter into the WAN port), then inserting multiple computers and/or network hubs into the unit��s Ethernet ports to establish a LAN connection.
The configuration of the unit is accomplished with ZyXEL��s Prestige Web Configurator (PWC), a Java-based tool that provides a wizard-like interface that leads users through the setup in 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the user��s level of computer experience. Seasoned IS professionals can configure the Prestige 100WH even faster with the unit��s built-in menu-driven user interface that allows for simplified network management either locally or remotely via Telnet connections.
The Prestige 100WH features ZyXEL��s Single User Account (SUA� ), which is an enhanced Network Address Translation (NAT). SUA permits an unlimited number of computers to access the Internet through a single IP address, thus saving the expense of subscribing to multiple Internet accounts.
Businesses can also enjoy a cost savings on the hardware side by installing Prestige 100WHs. According to Brooks, these savings can have a dramatic impact on a business' bottom line. "For a list price under $200, the Prestige 100WH can router-enable a business�� existing connectivity devices for well less than half the price of a standard router as well as minimize the internal support required to install new routers," Brooks said.
Through DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol), the Prestige 100WH automatically assigns IP and gateway addresses for all the clients on an attached LAN, greatly reducing the amount of network administration.
The Prestige 100WH supports Internet tunneling through Microsoft��s PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol), enabling the unit to act as a VPN (Virtual Private Network) gateway. "Businesses can dramatically cut long-distance call charges for remote dial-in access with this type of solution," Brooks noted. "In addition, PPTP offers enhanced security when sending data packets across the Internet."
Call Control and Spoofing
Call control features such as blacklisting and budget management allow the Prestige 100WH to regulate outgoing calls. Blacklisting prevents the unit from repeatedly dialing an unreachable phone number after the default limit has been exceeded, thus reducing overhead and improving performance. Budget management enables the control of outgoing calls.
Many network protocols use "watchdog" traffic to periodically check the availability of an ISDN-to-LAN connection. This traffic can keep a connection open even when there is no other traffic, negating the benefits of on-demand dialing and bandwidth. Spoofing lets the Prestige 100WH ignore the watchdog traffic and open a connection only when there is data to be transferred, thus saving thousands of dollars a month, especially over long-distance connections.
Robust Security Built-In
To protect a business�� vital data, several levels of security can be employed, including SUA/NAT, data filtering, calling line identification, automatic callback, a password-protected system management terminal, and user authentication by the Password Authentication Protocol (PAP) and Challenge Handshake Authentication Protocol (CHAP) for PPP links between routers. In addition, the firewall filtering provides controlled access to and from a network.
Pricing & Availability
The Prestige 100WH will be available in December,1998 through ZyXEL's worldwide distribution channel and will be list-priced at $199.
About ZyXEL Communications
ZyXEL Communications Inc.. (http://www.zyxel.com), located in Placentia, Calif., is a leading supplier of high-speed ISDN terminal adapters, ISDN remote access routers, modems, and compatible LAN/WAN data communications products. Since its inception, ZyXEL has built a strong reputation as a price/performance leader in connectivity devices by providing high quality and high performance at affordable prices.