Effort required to setup and maintain a VPN
carlsonmail at YAHOO.COM
Tue Jan 4 00:01:04 EST 2000
Not sure about managed VPN services, but I can give
you information on the effort to maintain a 7,500
person VPN system at my customer site.
1) Account creation/deletion issues
2) Rollout/update of VPN client software
3) User training, Help Desk support, 24x7 support
4) Additional VPN servers (for global geographic
5) System upgrades, patches, network monitoring
6) Unforeseen requirements (support for third-parties,
emergency access, etc.)
While managed VPN services would address items 4 and
5, I can say that most of the effort and budget is on
human capital to support items 1, 2, and 3.
My team of two full-time and five matrixed employees
handle items 4, 5, and 6 of our VPN system in-house.
But items 1, 2, and 3 have required upwards of 75 full
and part-time employees spread across the US, Europe,
and Asia! Cross-training, making the system painless
and effortless to manage, role-based administration,
access control considerations, user and system level
reporting, security logs, disaster recovery, and
real-time account histories (including adds, mods,
deletes, and terms) all play an important
consideration on top of the technical features.
Please investigate these soft issues while you perform
your due-diligence on managed VPN services.
One former customer of mine had 2 FTEs and 6 matrixed
employees to manage a 20,000 person dial-in
infrastructure. But how hard is it to configure
dial-up networking, static passwords, and an 800
number on a user's machine?? Installing third-party
VPN software, rolling out global ISP provider phone
numbers and dialers, adding new user accounts, and
distributing SecurID/ACE token cards for strong
authentication blew their personnel budget out of the
water. Their managed WAN provider which tried to
pitch managed VPN services couldn't address any of
Good luck with your efforts!
--- Joe Nall <joe at NALL.COM> wrote:
> In a recent local debate about managed VPNs the
> following questions came
> How many hours does it take to set up a VPN?
> How much time per month do you spend taking care of
> What factors affect admin load the most?
> I'm looking for personal experiences or opinions.
> We had local answers
> from 10 minutes to set up and no effort to maintain
> to months to set up
> and full time to maintain.
> Joe Nall
> VPN is sponsored by SecurityFocus.COM
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