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Acer America
Acer America Corp. is a computer manufacturer of business and consumer PCs, notebooks, ultrabooks, projectors, servers, and storage products.


333 West San Carlos Street
San Jose, California 95110
United States


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News & Articles

February 15, 2011 |

Symantec Announces 12.1 Release for Endpoint SBE

The latest version adds support for Mac, smart scanning, automation, and quick installation & upgrade times.

By Geoffrey Oldmixon

It has been two years since Symantec had a major release in the SMB space. This month, the security company reset that timer.

Symantec’s Endpoint Small Business Edition (SBE) 12.1 will be made publicly available this summer. A public beta version, which expires like trialware, will roll out in April. Right now, the product is open to Symantec enterprise customers and partners as an early beta model.

Blake McConnell is Symantec’s senior director of product management, SMB security solutions. He says a public beta is becoming a popular way to roll out security software. “We did a public beta with the last major release.”

This latest iteration of the Endpoint SBE product is being given the name “12.1.” That “point one,” however, should not dissuade SMBs from upgrading, explains McConnell. He says the numerical half-step is in name only so as to get two of Symantec’s Endpoint products on the same page.

“The reason the numbering convention is abnormal,” he explains, “is that we want to get the enterprise version and the SBE version on the same number.” He says that the next release for the Enterprise and SBE versions of Endpoint will be 13.

Powered By Insight and Sona

New features of SBE 12.1 include support for Mac, smart scanning, automation, and improved installation and upgrade times.

“There is a fair amount of automation in the product,” says McConnell, “especially with respect to installation, notifications and, through one console, you can also manage all your clients.”

The biggest features, though, are easily the use of Insight and SONAR. Insight is a product originally developed for Norton Antivirus. It uses the some 2.5 billion files in Symantec’s database, whitelisting those files that it knows to be harmless.

Endpoint SBE employs Insight to speed up scanning and reduce its impact on performance. “The Insight technology is increasingly being integrated into our technologies,” he says. “With Insight, we have optimized scanning. Every file that is a known good file can be skipped. There is no reason to scan it. So, on average, we’re going to skip 75 percent of files, and that has a huge effect on the impact of scanning.”

The other popular Symantec technology employed in Endpoint is SONAR. SONAR is an acronym that stands for Symantec Online Network for Advanced Response. This solution uses behaviors and characteristics, rather than bytes, to identify malicious threats.

“With malware and malware mutations, the bytes are changing, but not the behavior,” explains McConnell. “A password stealer still steals passwords. So, what SONAR does is look at what’s being done.

SONAR also looks for other identifiable characteristics, like the parent and children files. In total, SONAR provides Symantec with the traits and behaviors of more than 400 key applications.

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