Bitdefender GravityZone Ultra Review

Has the ability to whitelist, blacklist, and be very granular as to what I blocked

What is our primary use case?

The way I have it configured for most of my clients is that I go through and I do an analysis of where they need to go from basically giving them absolutely no access. I literally block everything. Then I start opening up their modules for content control. It's for opening up and giving specific users specific access that they need on the internet. I try to go with the zero access approach. That's my main approach. And that's how I usually use it. Obviously I have a couple of clients that wanted everything open and then they wanted us to go backward and to leave everything open and start closing things once in a while if they saw a problem.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature for me is the ability to whitelist, blacklist, and be very granular as to what I blocked, what apps I blocked, and what websites I block. I think that's probably the most valuable feature.

What needs improvement?

The tech engineers don't complain about much. It's solid. My biggest thing is that I want to have more than one option for my clients.

The software itself is solid. It would be better if it was more of a real-time solution, like SentinelOne. The one thing that holds me back on the SentinelOne side is that I can blacklist websites and stuff like that, but it's not as granular as Bitdefender. With Bitdefender, I feel like I have more control over what I can whitelist and blacklist.

Bitdefender is not designed to work in real-time. It's a signature-based platform, it's going to work signature-based in that there are times that it has to get updates. For example, if I'm managing a hundred machines with Bitdefender and the staff is having internet issues or something, and Bitdefender does an update within a week, not all the machines are going to be up to date at the same time. I have it configured to run every day at a certain time but unfortunately, a lot of the people that use it have really bad internet and I can't run it during work hours, I have to run it after hours and they shut their computers off. The first thing Bitdefender does is it goes and looks for signatures in the morning and then it runs the updates at night and then it runs scans at night as well. Sometimes it can go three, four, five days without any update. I've had some that go up to 27. The longest I've had was 32 days and it didn't even run one scan.

I have a client in the Philippines and right now, because of COVID, they're all over the Philippines and in the provinces where they have a really bad internet connection, it's a struggle. I have to schedule with them. The internet is so bad that I have six people using phone data to work because internet companies don't even go that far out for them to have a stable internet connection.

In those cases, I'm struggling a little bit with Bitdefender. With a regular office set up, it runs like clockwork. But with this new normal that we have right now, it's been a little bit complicated. That's why I'm looking to add Cylance. I have a demo with them soon.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Bitdefender for three years. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Right now I have about 150 licenses. I use Bitdefender as my go-to. Bitdefender is the default for any new client that signs up.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've never needed to use technical support. 

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is pretty straightforward. When I deployed, I deployed it through SolarWind software. It took minutes. I just uploaded the installer and I pushed it through the machines. It went through and it did the clean up of the default AVs that come when they buy the machines and it cleaned most of those up. There were a few McAfees and a couple of Nortons that we had to go in and manually use the McAfee or the Norton removal tool to get rid of those before the Bitdefender would install. But that was a very small percentage. It cleaned up most of them and it was running with no problem.

If we're in a regular office scenario, it's pretty painless.

What other advice do I have?

My advice would be to do it. For the most part, I've been happy. I would definitely recommend it.

I don't know if the software has the infrastructure for it, but in the next release, I would like for them to add some AI and some more predictive capabilities. It'll run more on a real-time basis instead of near real-time. I think that would work for me. I think it would be great.

I would rate Bitdefender a nine out of ten. 

**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Consultant
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