ActivePerl Helps Rev2 Networks Keep IT Risk at Bay

ActivePerl from ActiveState is Rev2 Networks' Perl distribution of choice for:

  • Fast, easy installation and quality-assured Perl.
  • Dependable, regular code maintenance including bug fixes, version updates and patched code.
  • Reduced in-house development time and effort spent keeping Perl running smoothly.
  • Windows platform support.
  • Worry-free Perl redistribution rights.

Companies lose billions of dollars every year when IT systems fail. That's why reducing IT risk is fast becoming a top priority for CIOs at America's largest companies. Rev2 Networks delivers an IT solution that brings together data analytics and visualization to classify risk and unearth its root cause. CIOs at banks and Fortune 1000s use Rev2 Networks' flagship product, RiskViewTM, to help pinpoint exactly where they can reduce IT spend without increasing business risk. "RiskView provides insight into where you should make your next round of IT investments and where you can safely cut," says Lou Steinberg, CEO of Rev2 Networks. "Many companies today need to do more with less. But, they also need to reduce spend without increasing risk."

RiskView closes the gap between IT resource restraints and risk.

RiskView's analytical framework and visual engine is delivered both as an application behind the firewall and as a VmwareTM virtual appliance.

Uncovering Risk with Perl

A newly added RiskView feature enables customers to run custom web scripts against uploaded data to identify potential system vulnerabilities.

These web scripts are written in Perl, an open source language ideal for report processing work. Perl is popular with system administrators and script authors because it's well suited for processing large amounts of data, creating reports or running test cases.

Perl is a natural choice here because it's widely used for web scripting, which makes the RiskView feature easier for developers to adopt. Additionally, by choosing an open source language rather than a proprietary solution, Rev2 Networks avoids being locked into a third-party vendor.

"We know that providing a standards-based scripting language that our customers are likely to know and use will make it easier for them to adopt this feature. By using a popular open source language, like Perl, training time for configuring CGI scripts is minimal," said Steinberg.

Rev2 Networks Chooses ActivePerl

When Rev2 Networks developed the web script feature last summer, the engineering team selected ActivePerl from ActiveState as their Perl distribution of choice. ActivePerl is responsible for computing and interpreting RiskView analysis via web scripts.

ActiveState's Perl distribution is used by millions of developers worldwide who rely on ActivePerl for easy installation and quality-assured code.

By implementing with ActivePerl, Rev2 Networks' development team can count on ActiveState's open source experts to diligently maintain the language distribution, fix bugs, implement version updates and patch code. Because managing open source in-house is notoriously complex and error-prone, putting the distribution's maintenance in the hands of ActiveState reduces the time and effort Rev2 Networks developers spend keeping Perl up-to-date and functioning smoothly. It also minimizes IT risk with the assurance that Rev2 Networks is using the highest-quality Perl distribution available.

Another reason ActivePerl was a natural choice for Rev2 Networks' development team is because it supports Windows - a key requirement because the RiskView virtual appliance runs on Windows. "We were delivering the tool as a virtual appliance with Windows as the operating platform. So, we needed an embedded solution for writing web scripts that would play well with Windows," said Steinberg.

Worry-Free Perl Licensing

Rev2 Networks purchased ActiveState's ActivePerl OEM License, an out-of-the-box licensing solution that provides full redistribution rights for Perl.

Open source licensing is infamously complex, particularly when software companies distribute open source software in their enterprise products, just as Rev2 Networks does with RiskView. With ActivePerl OEM, licensing is a no-brainer for Rev2 Networks and its customers: "With a virtual appliance model, there's an expectation that that the licensing is looked after," says Steinberg. "When I buy a computer, I don't want to deal with Intel and the memory chip manufacturer. When I buy a virtual computer, I'm buying a unit and I expect it to behave like one."

Steinberg is happy with ActivePerl's performance. "Frankly, I don't hear much about it, which is a very good thing. If it doesn't hit my desk, then I'm happy," says Steinberg.

With ActivePerl's help, Steinberg believes the Perl-driven CGI scripting feature will be widely adopted and appreciated by RiskView customers.