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eSoft InstaGate 806 review

The InstaGate 806 uses eSoft’s own security services and doesn’t rely on third party vendors. In this review we find out if it can it hold its own against the established names.

The appliance is managed via a web browser which fires up a wizard on first contact to get the appliance registered and updated. It'll also help with the network port setup and these are split up with the first four handling LAN duties and the other two looking after WAN or DMZ functions.

We found the web interface very intuitive although design-wise it's looking a tad dated now and could do with sprucing up to make it look more modern. Nevertheless, the ThreatMonitor home page is capable of providing a wealth of information about the various functions.

From the anti-spam tab you can keep an eye on the mail flow in and out of the appliance and view graphs showing the levels of spam and infected mail. A summary of the latest mail is provided and you can drill down into each one for more information.

We tested eSoft's anti-spam efficacy by leaving the appliance scanning live email for a week. We configured the appliance to pass all spam through but tag the subject line and on our Outlook clients we created rules to move any marked messages to a separate folder.

Using the default scoring system we calculated a 98 per cent anti-spam success rate with only a very small number of false positives showing the 806 working well straight from the box. The SpamFilter component also incorporates a learning phase and eSoft offers an Outlook plug-in which allows users to get involved in the spam identification process.

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