Cisco PIX Firewall Features
Cisco PIX firewalls bring together a
Embedded Operating System
The PIX firewall appliance is a dedicated system providing one main function, and that is to be a firewall. Unlike other firewalls that run on general-purpose operating systems such as Linux, Unix, or Microsoft Windows, the PIX series runs on a proprietary embedded operating system using a simplified kernel. This allows for both enhanced speed and protection against known operating system vulnerabilities.
Adaptive Security Algorithm
The adaptive security algorithm (ASA) is the heart of the PIX firewall. It controls all traffic flow through the PIX firewall,
is the capability of the PIX firewall to control which users have access to the system. It does this by requiring a username and password authentication for users who want to use HTTP, Telnet, or FTP across the firewall. The authentication occurs only once, making the process extremely fast and efficient,
Virtual Private Networks
Virtual private network (VPN) support by the PIX firewall is one of the
In many situations, a set of valid and invalid Web site addresses might be an appropriate and effective way to filter network traffic. In response to this, Cisco PIX firewalls have integrated an advanced feature of URL filtering that enables the PIX firewall to work with content filtering services. These services allow the capturing of World Wide Web requests to support the enforcement of policies or monitor
Today's applications are often mission critical, requiring the reliability of a resilient network infrastructure to support them. In response to this, Cisco PIX firewalls support hot standby failover features. Failover is the capability to link two PIX firewalls together, creating an active and a standby failover configuration. If the active firewall fails, the standby firewall assumes the IP and MAC addresses of the once-active, failed firewall. Hot standby means that this failover occurs without the need for a power reset that other systems can require. This failover capability helps provide a fault-tolerant firewall system with reduced human intervention.