Vulnerability-assessment and endpoint security firm eEye Digital Security is getting into hardware for the first time.

eEye vice president Morey Haber said the company's rack-mountable appliance incorporates eEye's Retina Network Security Scanner software, Blink Enterprise and Professional Client Security with anti-virus and the REM Security Management Console.

Called the REM Security Management Appliance 1505, it can scan the network for both known and unauthorised devices, including servers, desktops, routers and switches to identify missing patches, misconfiguration and other vulnerabilities.

Based on the Intel Xeon Dual-Core 5130 2.0Ghz, the 1505 appliance can analyse event data and track the remediation progress.

The main reason eEye decided to offer the appliance is to ease the set-up and configuration time, which would typically run between one to four hours to load and configure the software versions of eEye products on a server.

"The appliance takes about 15 to 20 minutes to start a scan," Haber said. "With the appliance, the user doesn't need a keyboard and mouse, as it has a web interface for maintenance."

The appliance is protected by Blink Professional intrusion-prevention software that use behaviour monitoring to protect the device against threats, without requiring system patches or virus signatures.

The appliance uses the Windows 2003 Server embedded platform, which has been hardened to conform to the US Department of Defense standard known as the "Gold" Security Technical Implementation Guide for hardening Windows. The appliance also includes the database MS SQL Server 2005 Workgroup embedded.

If it's determined that a Microsoft patch is required at any juncture, eEye will push it out to the device, alleviating any need for the user to patch the appliance. The 1505 appliance can scan as many as 15,000 managed devices and manage and deploy as many as 5,000 endpoint security assets.

The REM Security Management Appliance 1505, which starts at $23,495, is expected to ship early August.