Enterasys Networks has added new software to its switches and routers to improve its support for virtualised datacentres.

The company's Secure Networks for Virtual Data Centers system is essentially software intelligence for Enterasys' Matrix N-Series and X-Series switches and routers, Dragon security applications and NetSight management system designed to monitor and manage the dynamic mobility of virtual machines. This, in turn, lets customers enforce network access control policies; and comply with internal, industry or government regulations.

Improving the security for virtualisation has emerged as a key concern among IT organisations. Virtual servers are not only prone to the same attacks as physical servers but to new ones opened up by virtualisation technology itself, experts say.

Enterasys claimed that the management of a virtual datacentre produces some new challenges for the IT manager, some of which don't emerge until the virtualisation project has been completed.

The company said that Enterasys' Secure Networks for Virtual Data Centers was intended to address these issues. The policies enable, for example, an Enterasys Matrix N-Series switch to discover, authenticate and prioritise up to 1,000 virtual machines attached to a single Gigabit or 10 Gigabit Ethernet network interface.

With the new policies, the N-Series switches enable virtual machine mobility without manual reconfiguration of network interfaces on the physical server or network device - policies adapt on-demand, Enterasys said - even in the event of a physical server or virtual machine failure.

Enterasys claimed that the Matrix N-Series switches also separately secured and prioritised each virtual machine connected to a single network interface to provide flow-based visibility and control over individual voice, video and data conversations for each user and application.

The new policies will also allow Enterasys NetSight software to perform real-time location of a virtual machine and associated application services, as well as provide an audit history of its mobility, Enterasys said.