pfSense Review

Installation is relatively simple and acts as our main firewall and router with professional functions, but you need to have the right hardware setup as well.


Valuable Features

- Firewall/router

- OpenVPN server

- DHCP server

- High availability cluster

- It's for FREE!

Improvements to My Organization

Before I started working for my present company, they used to use a small (for home use :) ) Linksys router. The main problem of Linksys was the limitation of firewall rules of up to 50 entries. I suggested using a main firewall/router because it has professional functions, has no limitation, and it's for free.

Room for Improvement

So far, from my point of view everything is working perfect!

Use of Solution

I started working with pfSense in 2009.

Deployment Issues

Deployment is very easy and quite intuitive. Installation is very simple.

Stability Issues

No, I didn't have any issues. Every issue I had with pfSense was with hardware (not caused by pfSense).

Scalability Issues

Never.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:

I never use customer service.

Technical Support:

I never use technical support.

Previous Solutions

Before pfSense I had in the company an old Cisco router, but it had problems with stability so I was looking for an alternative and I found pfSense.

Initial Setup

If you have some knowledge about router and firewall, initial setup won't be a problem for you. Ask google about it and you will find a lot of documentation, instructions and video.

Implementation Team

I implemented pfSense by myself, so I can't rate the vendor team level of expertise.

ROI

System is totally free. I spent two days to implement it.
As hardware, I used old workstations which were prepared to scrap.
So ROI = use some cheap hardware with 2 NICs and you will get a professional firewall/router.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

It's absolutly free, no pricing and no licensing.

Other Solutions Considered

I was checking some other alternatives (right now I don't remember which) but pfSense had the best documentation, so the choice was simple.

Other Advice

For professional use, I advise using two computers with three NICs

Why 2 computers???
To create a HA cluster.

You will need 3 WAN IP addresses, 3 LAN IP addresses, and a quite simple NIC configuration:

1st NIC use to WAN connection (CARP)

2nd NIC use to heartbeat and sync between two pfSense

3rd NIC use to LAN connection (CARP)

For more details ask Google :)

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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