Product Information

Tenable security monitoring


by Peter Stephenson August 01, 2008

Tenable Network Security


Tenable security monitoring



Passive Vulnerability Scanner: £5,066; Nessus: £608; Security Center: £7,985


  • Features:
  • Ease of Use:
  • Performance:
  • Documentation:
  • Support:
  • Value for Money:
  • Overall Rating:


  • Strengths: Solid vulnerability assessment tools - alone or used together
  • Weaknesses: Security Center can become expensive
  • Verdict: Arguably the granddaddy of vulnerability assessment tools dressed up for the enterprise

For this review I decided to combine these products into a single group of their own. Please keep in mind that they can be purchased separately and can function on their own. The way I see it is that we are really looking at two products. The first is Nessus and Passive Vulnerability Scanner, the second is Security Center. These are all really good products; however, they are pretty much unchanged from the last time we reviewed them.

Let's start with Passive Vulnerability Scanner. This is a great tool for vulnerability monitoring. It basically sniffs the network, quietly listening for vulnerabilities and policy violations. Next is Nessus, which is a solid vulnerability scanner. Finally we have Security Center. This brings all the functionality of these tools into a single place.

We found all three tools easy to install and manage. Installation took just a few minutes and consisted of running a few executables and we were ready to go. All three had very well-designed user interfaces that were simple and intuitive to use. The Nessus scanner was also easy to manage, with the ability to set up scans with just a few mouse clicks.

We found these products to all perform very well in our test environment. Security Center offers much more in the way of reporting and has the added benefit of log correlation and security workflow management, which helps with track remediation of assets.

Documentation is in the form of several PDF user and administrator guides as well as installation manuals. All are well organised and provide a great amount of detail on configuring and managing the products. Many of them also contain screenshots and configuration examples.

Support for all three products is via annual subscription, which includes real-time vulnerability updates, compliance configuration audits, plus phone and email support.

All these tools bring some great functionality to the table individually, with Nessus and Passive Scanner paired up, or Security Center by itself. We find these products to be a good value for money, although Security Center can become costly for large environments.

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