pfSense Review

The intrusion detection capabilities work well


What is our primary use case?

My primary use case for pfSense is as a firewall. We also use it for intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, website filtering, and quality of service (QoS).

How has it helped my organization?

My company mainly works in the health and educational domain, schools and universities. I prevent the improper use of content from schools and universities. I defend the medical records for the patients in our hospitals. That is the main use case for me for the firewall.

What is most valuable?

One of the most valuable features of this solution is that it's almost entirely free and I can do everything with it.

What needs improvement?

It has everything I need, but the main drawback of pfSense is that it's not user-friendly. I hope to have something to make the interfaces more user-friendly. I would also like to see some documentation that can help with use cases or that has advice and tips. I have found some documentation available but it's usually from an earlier version. If they develop this, pfSense will be the best. The only thing that Fortigate is better than pfSense is that they have 24/7 support. pfSense also needs improvements in the intrusion detection area.


For how long have I used the solution?

Three to five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I depend on and use VMware ESXi with vSphere in my deployment, virtualization. pfSense is more stable and reliable if you install it directly on the server, i.e. not being installed as a virtual machine. That makes it very stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is good. You can integrate some nodes of pfSense but it's not very user friendly.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would be more relieved and more happy to have support. You need to have some people who can help you in any use case.

How was the initial setup?

Lots of reading and trial and error. It's tough for the network engineer, but it is magnificent in performance from my point of view.

What about the implementation team?

We implemented in-house. Not user friendly, but if you want to do anything you can do it with pfSense.

What was our ROI?

Free. Would purchase for better customer support.

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

It is completely free.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We also evaluated Fortigate.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten. I give it this rating because of the rich features available. pfSense is free and I can do everything with it. It works as a firewall for servers also.

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