The Firepower 9300 is designed to run a variety of security services from Cisco and third parties.

Mitch Wagner, Executive Editor, Light Reading

June 8, 2015

3 Min Read
Cisco Launches All-Purpose Security Server

Cisco announced a new security hardware server, the Firepower 9300, on Monday that's designed to provide a platform for multiple network security services.

The server is an alternative for network operators to deploying different appliances for different functions, such as firewall and deep packet inspection. The Firepower 9300 hosts multiple types of security on a single chassis, Greg Nehib, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) senior manager of product and solutions marketing, told Light Reading.

Using a general-purpose security appliance enhances agility and reduces opex, freeing up resources to allow carriers to increase revenue, says Rob Barlow, Cisco director of global service provider marketing. "It reduces operating expenses because they're not swivel-chairing between one device and another appliance," he says.

Operators can increase revenue because they can offer services faster. Agility increases as automated threat defenses dynamically follow workload, Barlow says.

The new platform provides end-to-end security visibility for improved perspective on the types of threats posed to an organization, Nehib says.

Network operators can run Cisco or third-party security services on the server, Nehib says. The device currently supports DDoS protection from Radware Ltd. (Nasdaq: RDWR), with other third-party services to come. The server will run any standards-compliant third-party services, and Cisco will work with other vendors to support proprietary extensions where needed.

The server provides improved performance by processing packets based on metadata rather than deep packet inspection, Nehib says.

The Firepower 9300 is based on technology that came to Cisco through the acquisition of Sourcefire. (See Cisco Banks on Sourcefire & Snort for Security, Cisco to Buy Sourcefire for $2.7B, Why Cisco Is Acquiring ThreatGrid.)

The server will be available in July, with pricing information to be disclosed then, Nehib says.

Want to know more about security? This is just one of the many topics covered at Light Reading's second Big Telecom Event Tuesday and Wednesday this week in Chicago. Get yourself registered today or get left behind!

Security is foundational to Cisco's effort to transform itself from selling networking products to helping service providers and enterprises achieve business goals using networking technology -- which Cisco refers to as "outcomes." Other elements include cloud, analytics and the Internet of Things (which Cisco calls "Internet of Everything." (See How Cisco Will Compete Against White Box Switches.)

Cisco will have to navigate that transition without longtime CEO John Chambers, who announced a July 26 retirement date last month. He'll be replaced by Chuck Robbins, Cisco senior VP for worldwide operations. (See Cisco's Robbins to Replace Chambers as CEO and Chambers's Legacy: A Resurgent Cisco .)

Robbins named his top management team last week. (See New Cisco Leadership Favors Diversity.)

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to [email protected].

About the Author(s)

Mitch Wagner

Executive Editor, Light Reading

San Diego-based Mitch Wagner is many things. As well as being "our guy" on the West Coast (of the US, not Scotland, or anywhere else with indifferent meteorological conditions), he's a husband (to his wife), dissatisfied Democrat, American (so he could be President some day), nonobservant Jew, and science fiction fan. Not necessarily in that order.

He's also one half of a special duo, along with Minnie, who is the co-habitor of the West Coast Bureau and Light Reading's primary chewer of sticks, though she is not the only one on the team who regularly munches on bark.

Wagner, whose previous positions include Editor-in-Chief at Internet Evolution and Executive Editor at InformationWeek, will be responsible for tracking and reporting on developments in Silicon Valley and other US West Coast hotspots of communications technology innovation.

Beats: Software-defined networking (SDN), network functions virtualization (NFV), IP networking, and colored foods (such as 'green rice').

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