SonicWall TZ Review

The product's modular nature is a huge plus, but work is needed on the ransomware application


What is our primary use case?

The primary use is for protecting the internet for client-to-search sites. We also use site-to-site VPN, and it segregates the traffic.

How has it helped my organization?

We are an integrator and a solution provider. We implement this and other solutions for our customers.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are the UTM, site-to-site VPN, and client-to-site VPN. The site-to-site VPN allows us to connect between the branches. We also use the global VPN client and the local VPN client.

I find most of the features are useful.

What needs improvement?

In some places, we face problems, especially in the client VPN portion. There are certain places where we are not able to contact. We don't have the lease line, static IP addresses, or dynamic IP addresses. This is an area of concern.

Another thing which I don't like about SonicWall is that it tries to bypass the resellers. That is not good. SonicWall suddenly calls the client, goes to them directly. That is not a good thing.

They should consider working a bit more on their ransomware application.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for more than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution, once it's configured properly, is unbreakable. The only thing is that on the dynamic DNS we are facing some problems. Fortinet is doing much better, compared to SonicWall because they have their own data center and the dynamic DNS is working better. It provides a much better and more stable VPN. This is dependent upon third-party servers. If their server is down then we're finished. We depend upon them, and we have to wait for some time. This is a big problem.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability-wise, with most of the mid-range solutions, there is no scalability. If you want to upgrade, you have to upgrade it. One good thing about SonicWall is the modular nature of the product. That means you can buy whatever part of the solution you want. That is one beauty of it. If you don't want IPS, you don't have to buy the IPS. That option, that's much better than anybody else.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would rate technical support a seven out of ten.

If you previously used a different solution, which one did you use and why did you switch?

We did use a previous solution, but the client wanted to switch. 

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was complex. It is not so straight forward. It's not tough like others, but still, they can improve on it.

Deployment takes, depending upon the concentration, anywhere from half a day to two days, depending upon the password you need to deal with for all the configuration. If everything is not the same, like you have UTM features and all those things, it may go up to one day, depending upon the configuration. If the training is also added into it, two, three days including training and assistance.

What about the implementation team?

We are a reseller. I've been doing this for three years. I set up most of the firewalls, and we work with the company and also we have direct end users. We work as a consultant for other IT companies.

For deployment, in terms of staff, the maximum you need, depending on the project, would be two to three people. Sometimes it will be enough even to use one or two people. A lot of that depends on requirements. 

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

License renewals come in around $35,000 to $45,000. That's the retail price.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

When it comes to marketing this type of solution to customers, we try to focus more on the Fortinet side. However, if they are already invested in a solution like SonicWall then we continue with the same thing.

What other advice do I have?

If the client is using SonicWall, we use SonicWall as well, for reliability. If they're using Fortinet, we try to use the same thing and try to minimize the cost, that's how we work.

In terms of advice, I would say that you have to look at the entire solution. There are certain things which SonicWall cannot do. SonicWall doesn't support ADSL because of security reasons but sometimes you need it, you want a little bit, you need to have that option to be working. Unfortunately, that option is not there, but sometimes you need it. Therefore, you have to evaluate the requirement.

Also, sometimes the quality is not so good. We have trouble sometimes with SonicWall. Unfortunately, sometimes the normal way of getting into the remote connectivity doesn't work because it's on a data correction. Or we only need to get into another specific connection. SonicWall doesn't support this connection. If we can't access the VPN we can't establish a check with the VPN. There was an incident like that and we had to take another break and then finish the product. You have to evaluate all this and then implement it. It's not possible to just not do something because SonicWall cannot. If it's for security you have to do it, there is no other option.

I would rate this solution between a six and seven out of ten. More work can be done on the servers, and the VPN areas also. It's a little bit confusing on the route side. I think the routes need to be cleaner, better. 

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Reseller.
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