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Embedded Web Servers Dave Piscitello, Core Competence, Inc. Lisa Phifer, Core Competence, Inc. David Strom, David Strom, Inc.

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Presentation on theme: "Embedded Web Servers Dave Piscitello, Core Competence, Inc. Lisa Phifer, Core Competence, Inc. David Strom, David Strom, Inc."— Presentation transcript:

1 Embedded Web Servers Dave Piscitello, Core Competence, Inc. Lisa Phifer, Core Competence, Inc. David Strom, David Strom, Inc.

2 Our backgrounds We write about and test products for a living. We consult for some of the vendors involved.

3 What is an embedded web server? l Software-only –QNX, Spyglass l Hardware for managing and configuring something else –routers, switches, hubs, printers l Hardware for deploying Intranet services –what we’ll demonstrate today

4 What is an Intranet appliance? l Systems that –support HTTP, HTML –serve up files for browser-enabled clients –and more! l and are used to –host a corporate, workgroup, or small business web site, establishing its identity –provide Internet access and LAN services to corporation, workgroup, small biz, K12

5 Kinds of appliances l Shared disk, filesystem web server l No-frills web server –basic HTML/HTTP l Advanced web server –CGI, Java support, web-enabled discussion groups, eCommerce, etc. l Multi-server appliances –web and file server plus , router, DNS, DHCP, web cache, firewall, gateway

6 Products demonstrated l Cisco Micro Webserver 200 –http://www.cisco.com l Microtest WebZerver –http://www.zerver.com l Cobalt Microserver Qube 2700 WG – l Apexx TEAM Internet –http://

7 Possible applications l Small business Extranet l SOHO/ROBO Intranet server l Discussion Forum server l Workgroup file/CD ROM sharing l Firewall/Router for Internet access l Remote access router l Office server l Extranet

8 Our Design Goals for Appliances l Plug and play –Attach power, connect to Ethernet and go! l User interface –Should be simple, not overly constrained l Access controls for users and groups l Configuration, management via browser l Pre-installed web content, utilities, scripts –Easy integration of these into published site

9 General State of Appliances l Almost plug and play l User interfaces somewhat limited l Setup of users and groups is tedious –Not well integrated with NOS access controls l Not ready for certain extranet applications –No SSL, PKI, eCommerce support l Not for high-performance web serving –Expect to support ~50 users,

10 What features do you need? Ask yourself, ask your vendor: l Types of network attachment? l How extensible is the web server? l DHCP, DNS, Mail servers included? l Type of built-in OS, web server software? l How many different ways to upload files? l What other tools are bundled with the box? l Are design, content templates included?

11 Feature comparison

12 Appliances: Pros l Simplicity over NT & UNIX servers, –esp. for organizations with little or no OS admin expertise l Reduced total cost of ownership l Can lock down web site easier than with general purpose computing platform server

13 Appliances: Cons l Can’t find and manage on corporate net –not issue for those that support SMB/CIFS/AppleShare l May need more than browser to manage –telnet, proprietary wizards, l Difficult to apply uniform user and group access controls across both appliances and NOS systems l How scalable is CPU, storage, network?

14 My favorite appliance Lisa: TEAMInternet Why Why : “I want a one-box-does-it-all turn-key solution for small biz LANs.” Dave P: Cobalt Why Why : “I want DNS, web and mail in an appliance behind my own firewall, router.” David S: Zerver Why Why : “I want the easiest web publishing appliance available."


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