Direct Access back in Windows Server 8 – What’s new ?– a quick overview

Published 08 October 11 10:33 AM | forefrontsecurity

If you have seen this Windows Server 8 BUILD session “Enabling the hybrid cloud using remote access appliances”, you know that all new feature of DirectAccess are back in Windows Server. I just want to have an overview of what DirectAccess looks like in Windows Server 8.

First, DirectAccess is a Role : “Remote Access”

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You wan deploy both VPN or DirectAccess.

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You can choose to deploy Remote Access in a Single Nic configuration. This is very interesting and needs a deeper analyze to see how it is going to work.

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After the wizard completion, you will see this new interface :

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Another interesting point is the ability to provide DirectAccess to Windows 8 endpoints without IPSEC. Also, needs a deeper analyze. We can see that certainly, Windows 8 DA Connectivity is not the same as within Windows 7. You can active OTP authentication with one click Sourire

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Perhaps the most important feature : Multisite. With Forefront UAG and Windows 7, there was no easy ways to provide dynamic multisite DirectAccess scenario. We can see this is fully integrated in Windows Server 8. Just enable Multisite (requires IPSEC and no Self-Generated Certificates), and declare Entry Points

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This is available for Windows 8 only, or both Windows 7 and 8.

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There are 2 new DNS entry. Don’t know the goal for the moment.

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When Multisite is activated, a new interface is available, and you can manage each nodes

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To summary, this is just a quick overview of what you can find in the new Remote Access Role. We need to go further to understand how all is working. I am very exiting to go technically deeper, but mostly working on new functional scenario. This overview lets me think that DA deployment is now really easy. The Windows Server 8 team works very hard to provide a simple and complete wizard, leaving us doing mostly functional architecture. Thank You !

Published by Olivier DETILLEUX

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