A mix of large and small companies picked up product awards at the Techworld awards gala dinner, held last night. The awards, now in their 13th year and in their fourth since being taken over by Techworld, attracted a record number of entries.

"The judges had a particularly tough task this year," said Maxwell Cooter, Techworld editor and chairman of judging panel, at the dinner, held in London's Gibson Hall. "There were several companies with strong products who failed to grap top spot but who would, perhaps, have made won in previous years," he added.

In the tightest-fought contest, Uptime won best network management product against some strong competition. As Cooter said, "this was an exceptionally strong field and the arguments on this one went over to a second day, Uptime won it by the narrowest of margins."

But the network management prize wasn't unique. Cooter said that the competition had been fierce in a number of categories: the best networking device, won by Netgear for its ProSafe SSL312; the best convergence product won by EdgeBox with the EdgeBox 4.3 and best security software won by AVG were also very hard fought.

There were two acceleration product awards and two virtualisation awards, reflecting the growing interest in those technologies. The WAN acceleration award was picked up by Blue Coat for its SG Appliance box, while the web acceleration prize was won by F5 for its WebAccelerator. The storage virtualisation award went to DataCore for SANSymphony 6.0 and VMware snaffled the virtualisation product of the year itself.

This year, for the first time, there was a green product of the year reflecting the growing interest in environmentally friendly computing. The inaugural green award was one by PlateSpin with its PowerRecon 3.0.

For a full list of winners, go to the Techworld Awards winners' page.