It is rare to run into that one product that impresses technical audiences in the way that ISA Server has managed to. As I prepared to write this book, what surprised me was not ISA’s ability to wow and charm Microsoft-centric environments, but its ability to impress the Microsoft-skeptic crowds as well. These are the ones who have been skeptical of anything coming out of Redmond with “Security” in its title—for good reason in many cases. So, from its release, ISA faced a seemingly insurmountable uphill battle for acceptance, which makes its success even more impressive.
I have had the luxury of working closely with several of the best technologies Microsoft has produced: Active Directory, SharePoint, Exchange, and SQL Server. It therefore takes a powerful product for me to be impressed, and ISA Server 2006, and its closely related predecessor, ISA Server 2004, really has done that. ISA functionality is broad, with VPN, reverse-proxy, firewall, content-caching, and protocolfiltering capabilities. Marketing slogans are one thing, but this product really does live up to its billing. I have deployed, administered, and tested ISA Server at organizations of many sizes and functions, from city governments to banks to law firms to technology firms, and have had great success with the product. The breadth and depth of functionality that ISA provides makes my job designing security for these types of environments that much easier.
About the Author
Michael Noel, MS MVP, MCSE+I Michael Noel has been involved in the computer industry for nearly two decades, and has significant real-world experience helping organizations realize business value from Information Technology infrastructure. Michael has authored several major best-selling industry books translated into seven languages with a total worldwide circulation of over 150,000 copies. Significant titles include SharePoint 2007 Unleashed, Exchange Server 2007 Unleashed, the upcoming Windows Server 2008 Unleashed, ISA Server 2004 Unleashed, SharePoint 2003 Unleashed, and many more. Currently a partner at Convergent Computing in the San Francisco Bay area, Michael’s writings and worldwide public speaking experience leverage his real-world expertise designing, deploying, and administering IT infrastructure for his clients.