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October 1st, 1999

[7:00 AM] Web Server Security Plug-in Receives Major Upgrade

Purity Software has updated Web Sentinel to version 2.1. WebSentinel is a web server plug-in allowing greater flexibility in online security. The new version, though incremental in its version number change, offers major new features. According to Purity Software:

WebSentinel is a web server plug-in that replaces or supplements your web server's built-in security, allowing more flexibility and power to manage users and secure areas with a complete Macintosh user interface. Some of the many features include auto-expiring users (subscription management), administration groups, optional HTML-based login forms, GREP match strings, and custom "No Access" files for each realm. WebSentinel's plug-in architecture allows you to integrate with your existing user data and security architectures.

New in version 2.1:

WebSentinel v2.1 has been developed with two goals in mind: to provide a stability and performance enhancing maintenance update, and to extend the environment with several new key features.

Denied Workstations - Denied workstations allow a specific workstation or range of workstations, specified by IP address or hostname, to be denied access to the site, without the ability to log-in. Each workstation can be set to one or more realms, or the entire web site.

New Web-based Administration - The web-based administration for WebSentinel has been completely rewritten, allowing administration of all WebSentinel features. This interface uses a new script architecture that allows anyone familiar with AppleScript to extend or replace the standard web-based administration pages.

Updated Scripting Interface - The scripting interface to WebSentinel has been updated to support the new features of WebSentinel. Through this interface you can exchange information with WebSentinel from AppleScript, Userland Frontier, Purity's own WebSiphon, Pervasive Software's Tango, Blueworld's Lasso, and other Apple Event savvy environments.

Persistent Login Cookies - When using web login forms for authentication, WebSentinel now supports the ability to specify how long the username and password will be saved on the browser's computer, instead of expiring after the browser quits. This allows users to not have to keep typing their username and password when entering the site, if they choose to. A simple optional checkbox on the login form allows the user to choose whether they want this feature enabled.

Automatic Installer and Self-repair - WebSentinel no longer requires you to install any additional libraries or files other than the WebSentinel Plug-in itself. When the web server starts up, WebSentinel will automatically create any default files and Data Target Plug-ins necessary for WebSentinel to function. Just drop the WebSentinel Plug-in in your web server Plug-ins folder and you're ready to go!

Improved Import of Users with Realms - The simple tab-delimited import file format that WebSentinel supports has been improved to support an optional realm match string as the last item. When importing any users with realm permissions, providing a realm match string will allow functional realms to be automatically created as the users are imported.

User Sign-up Script Example - Included with the package are new example scripts that you can use to simplify administration on your subscription-based web site. A form allows users to pick username and password, and WebSentinel will automatically create their account.

Logout Link Feature - When using web-based HTML login forms, the site administrator now has the ability to add a "Logout" link to their web site. On a shared computer, the user of the web site can click the "Logout" link so that subsequent users of the computer will not be able to use the previous user's account. An optional URL can also be specified to redirect the user to, once the logout is complete.

The upgrade is free to registered users of version 2.x, while the full version is priced at US$199. Upgrades from version 1.x are priced at US$99. The company offers a demo and more information on the product at their web site.

Purity Software

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