Why an Appliance

Why use a hardware appliance versus a software solution?


The solution is totally self-contained.

There is no software installation or configuration. With software solutions there is a requirement to install and configure the software. Prerequisites of this type of installation require meeting minimum system hardware and Operating System requirements. This is not an issue with the ComSifter.


A server is not required.

Software solutions must be installed on server hardware and server operating systems. Many schools, small libraries and home networks do not have a server. This can add over a $1000 to the cost of a software solution.


Potential software conflicts are eliminated.

Adding any new software to an existing server installation opens the possibility of software conflicts. System/Network administrators will typically test the new software on a test system before moving to a live environment. This procedure is time and cost intensive. ComSifter does not impact existing servers in any way.


Latent Problems are eliminated.

Latent problems after the software solution is installed may cause ongoing problems for users and administrators. It may be difficult to determine if or what software conflicts are causing the problems. With ComSifter the unit may be easily removed from the network for troubleshooting purposes.


Upgrades, and the potential for unforeseen problems, are eliminated.

Any time server software is upgraded, whether an OS upgrade or an application upgrade, the possibility of unforeseen problems is increased.


Performance is guaranteed.

ComSifter is able to guarantee its performance as it is a standalone appliance and not affected by the server.


Existing server performance is not compromised.

Adding a software based solution will change the performance characteristics of an existing server. Adding a software filtering solution, thus increasing the demands on the server, can slow down response for all users and may require an upgrade to the server hardware.


Licensing costs do not increase.

Server licenses are typically on a per seat basis. To reduce costs, many organizations buy licenses on an as needed basis, while allowing Internet access to all users. A software solution, with all users connecting to the server, may require an increase in the number of licenses required. ComSifter, with its unlimited licensing, eliminates this issue.