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Baylor U Consolidates Security on Crossbeam Platform

Baylor University in Waco, TX has deployed Crossbeam Systems' X-Series Next Generation Security Platform, a combination of hardware and software, to secure campus-wide communications.

The complexity of managing security appliance "sprawl," along with the expected increase in use of high-bandwidth multimedia services at Baylor, propelled the IT department to reassess its network security needs before the 2008-2009 academic year began for its 14,000 students.

"We anticipated a spike in network demand with the start of the school year and wanted to find a more cost-effective and scalable way to manage our security infrastructure," said Scott Day, manager of network services at Baylor. "Crossbeam enabled us to consolidate our entire firewall and content gateway infrastructure onto a single X-Series chassis, while providing the flexibility to address future network demands."

The university has deployed Crossbeam's X80 chassis with a 2-5-2 configuration (two 8200 Network Processor Modules for traffic classification and load balancing; five 8400 Application Processor Modules, a Linux-based engine to support specific or combinations of applications; and two 8400 Control Processor Modules for managing and monitoring all modules and the chassis. The institution expected to upgrade the system's operating system from Crossbeam's X-Series Operating System version 7.2 to 8.1 in June.

In addition to consolidating its existing Check Point firewall and Websense Web filtering applications on Crossbeam, installing the X80 eliminated the need to purchase more than 10 security appliances and related network infrastructure that Baylor would have needed to accommodate its security and bandwidth requirements, according to Day.

"We have fewer licenses and appliances to manage and can scale as demand requires," said Day. "It's as simple as adding a blade to the Crossbeam chassis. This alleviates a lot of management headaches."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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