Re: [Emerald] External System

Dale E. Reed Jr. ( (no email) )
Thu, 30 Mar 2000 09:05:21 -0800 wrote:
> > What apps (external systems) are you trying to integrate with Emerald?
> I am exploring the possibilities on whole range of products, firstly would be FTP server.
> There is no products on market available with FULL ODBC integration at low cost.
> We could buy whole FTP server with source code for less US$999.

Serv-U has support for EmerAuth, including Quotas, etc for $40. Its
very powerful and works will with Emerald (

> Secondly is HTTP/HTTPS server. HTTPS is reasonable secure for most Small and Medium Enterprise,
> it is good enough to transfer files between home and office without forking out a VPN solution.

I'm not sure what you would want that to do with Emerald? Do you mean
allowing them to use you as a middle-point storage?

> Email is another candidate, it is not difficult to add ODBC function to a mail server if you already got the mail server, unfortunately people charge a premium for it on the market, usually cost about US$1 for each mail box.
> If anyone on the market want a redundancy solution for a mail server, they should look into purchase a layer 4/7 switch(16 10/100Mb ports $9,995), instead of forking out $100,000 just for the mail server.

Mailsite 4.x Enterprise is $3995, and VOPMail Enterprise Server is
Both come with out of the box support for Emerald. IMail, and NTMail
both use EmerAuth for direct Emerald Support as well. I'm not sure
where you got the $100K figure from?

> Also, Microsoft and Novell are pushing their directory service, unfortunately it is not the solution for SME market. A low cost RADIUS directory server runs on NT workstation/MS SQL, plus other range of web server, FTP, mail will simplify the administration for this market. It is not necessary to use RADIUS just for layer 2/3 network service. Today's desktop hardware is capable of handling upto 50 requests per second RADIUS processing with little problem.

But RADIUS doesn't have the functionality to do what you want, unless
you transform it into something else. At that point, you don't have
a RADIUS server anymore, you have a custom solution (ie, its not going
to work with anything except the stuff you modify).

> =================================
> I may devote a little bit of space in this list to express some of opinions on why I choose RADIUS as a protocol for authentication.

You are not chooding RADIUS for authentication, though. You are
choosing it for a full fledged directory service or user management
protocol, which it is not designed to be.

> There are couple of vendors on the market provide layer4/7 switches. Those switches will load balance the server on the protocol response time and automatically redirect the particular protocol to available server, they will not only operate on LAN, the load balancing can scale to global sites. Those protocols include HTTP,HTTPS,FTP,POP3,SMTP,DNS,RADIUS,etc. As you noticed it does not include NDS or Active Directory at moment, so to load balance the NDS or AD, you need a good administrator and planning.

I'm not sure I would recommend using NDS or AD for what you want to do,

> To execute load balance properly, we need to have directory sitting in the backend, provide record locking(just in case two people change the record at same time), replication, on-line backup, etc.... The MS SQL is a low cost vehicle to provide this backend, obviously you could cluster the MS SQL with very low cost.(US$50,000 can go a long way). Simply because database has been here long time, and technology and expertise are easy to find.

> A clustered RADIUS server need considerable resource to program and maintain on the code, plus the implementation and administration. Since RADIUSNT/RADIUSX has the right tier structure, it is better to put resource into marketing and developing partnership, instead of reinventing the wheels on backup server,etc. I do not see any cost benefit from the customer point of view. Plus in today market environment, user base is everything, if you have the user base, you can raise capital and acquire other products.

There is no need to cluster a RADIUS server. The RADIUS protocol
handles that natively, and you can use distributed authentication
with RadiusNT/RadiusX to do load balancing.


Dale E. Reed Jr. Emerald and RadiusNT__________________________________________IEA Software, Inc.

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