Fortinet FortiWLM Review

Create guest networks without a VLAN, easy to use, and has a user-friendly GUI


What is our primary use case?

We are a technical services company and this is one of the solutions that we provide to our clients. My client was interested in adding a guest network to the existing infrastructure. The main requirement was that the new access points needed to be able to integrate properly, but any guests should not be able to connect to his main network.

It was a very old network with no VLAN and there was no interest in implementing one. This solution allowed for the creation of different networks without the need for a VLAN or the installation of layer two switches.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the ability to connect and broadcast to different networks without using a VLAN or a layer two switch, which allows you to easily create guest networks. This is a very useful and very different feature compared to other solutions on the market. In every customer meeting, this is the feature that we highlight.

The solution is easy to use and the GUI is user-friendly.

What needs improvement?

The guest management features need to be improved by adding automation. There is a facility for guest management through a portal, but it should be automatic. As it is now, the IT person has to edit and do things manually. All of the details should be maintained in the FortiCloud.

I would like to see some small access points or signal extenders added to the product line to help with areas that do not have full coverage. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with Fortinet wireless for the past seven years, and for fourteen years in total with Fortinet solutions.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

In the past seven years that I have been working with this solution, I have not had any issues regarding stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This scalability is good.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have been in contact with technical support a few times, although it was for known product issues that required doing things like installing a new driver. Overall, I would rate them to be good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We have deployed solutions from D-Link and NETGEAR for certain clients, although they have not needed to have the depth of features that are offered by Fortinet Wireless. These include both security options and the facility for providing a guest network.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is easy and user-friendly. The deployment is highly efficient, and it may take 25 minutes to configure if you have a maximum of ten access points. At most, it may take three to four hours.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

For indoor access points, there is a one-time cost, upfront, whereas outdoor access points have an annual fee.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Compared to some of the wireless solutions by Cisco, Aruba, and HP, this product is a little bit costly. However, Fortinet has good security and other good features that the customers are interested in.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Distributor
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