Microsoft and Cisco committed to this back in 2004 I believe. NAP and NAC are technologies for ensuring that systems comply with security policies before allowing them to connect to a network. This is one of those areas where integration of the network infrastructure and workstation operating system is critical for a complete solution. The interop architecture was announced here and here. A whitepaper with some of the details can be found here. I believe this technology is going provide a major boost in security when properly implemented. The laptop infected at home and brought to work is one of the most common attck scenarios we come across. NAP and NAC can effectively introduce a brand new security boundary, adding another layer of defense to your network. This is part of the overall trend of applying security at multiple layers, particularly inside the corporate firewall. When you consider host anti-virus/malware, host firewall, NAP/NAC, VLAN/IPSec isolation, etc. you can acheive a very secure environment with a lot of dynamic update capability. I’m currently working on a project for a government agency where we are designing this type of architecture. Today’s news will certainly help us acheive those goals.