Processing XML on the Network

The dramatic increase of Web Services and other XML traffic on today’s enterprise networks presents serious security, management, and performance considerations for the IT manager. At the root of the problem: existing network devices such as routers, firewalls, and load balancers operate at the packet level, rather than at the data or content level. As a result, existing network infrastructures are entirely unable to provide the data-level security that enterprises need. To meet this need, vendors are offering a variety of solutions with a confusing array of features. These products fall into two broad, overlapping categories: network appliances and XML gateways.

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