Untangle NG Firewall Review

Offers reliable web filtering and is easy to administer

What is our primary use case?

We are using a lot of applications which are running on Untangle. We use web filtering, application control, firewall, and VPN services.

What is most valuable?

Web filtering is very reliable. I can say all the features are very useful. We haven't been using much ad blockers or phish blockers. We've bee using web filtering, application control, policy manager, IP filtering, and VPN. They have been very useful.

What needs improvement?

The hardware can be improved. Now, we're using hardware appliances. In terms of processing power, I think it can actually be improved further, because, in terms of the number of requests, especially if you are using web filtering, the number of requests that should be coming onto the appliance is quite large and it needs a bit more processing power.

If the solution included a unified device tracker and management, that would be great. So that we could actually include other endpoints, like our laptops, or mobile devices. We need something to help in terms of mobile device management. I think it's one critical feature which is required by another interface because people are now bringing their own devices to the workplace to get services. I think MDM is quite critical to be included in that.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Generally, in terms of the administration, it's a team of about five users who administer the appliance. In terms of using the functionality or the features, there are about 800 users.  All are accessing the appliance through various means, through the web filtering, and through the access VPN.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We are planning to actually activate a number of additional features and see if we are going to be able to fully utilize additional features from one failover and one balancer so that we can actually then put them in a cluster and be able to fully utilize all our internet service provider links.

How are customer service and technical support?

In terms of technical support, the service is excellent. Considering that there is a command center where you can actually just draw a ticket and they get in through the command and will be able to assist you even on the appliances, remotely, and be able to resolve the issues is great. I would say the only major issue is only the time difference between us in Zimbabwe and America because we are on different time zones. Generally, the support is very good.

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

Previously, we had been using various other solutions from Cisco. I've seen that Untangle is quite easy to administer and quite straightforward in terms of how to configure the various features which are found there. The main reason was to try to get a simplified solution that is resilient and able to scale up, and have all the solutions on one portal. 

In this instance, using one appliance, which can actually give you all of these applications, is a plus for enterprise organizations like us. We are required to have just one appliance to be able to address various issues, like web filtering, spam blockers, application control, load balancer. I think it's easier rather than having various vendors with various technologies. In terms of reporting, you would need to get to all those appliances to get different reports of what is happening.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is very straightforward. It's very simple. You just plugin and then you use the web interface and it's quite straightforward for a tech guy. In terms of deployment, because we are deploying two firewalls, it only takes about two days to do the configuration.

What other advice do I have?

In terms of distribution, maybe it's because we're in Zimbabwe, it's a bit of a challenge. It's a hassle. It's not very visible here in Zimbabwe and Africa. It's something which we got over the internet. There is only one distributor, locally, but now, we are dealing directly with Untangle.

This is a very good product. In terms of sizing, you really need to understand your requirements at the outset and be able to get the correct appliance. Especially in terms of the number of functionalities. You should be looking into that in particular so that you get the correct appliance and be able to utilize it.

I would rate this solution a 9.5 out of 10. Having various solutions in one appliance, one portal, that's easy to implement, with excellent customer service makes for a sound solution. And it's not harsh on the pocket, in terms of the budgets, in terms of the license renewals etc. It's quite affordable. It's quite reasonable. It makes sense. I would say it's a very good product when you are comparing all those metrics.

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

author avatarSimbarashe Mazorodze
Top 5LeaderboardReal User

Blocking website content was becoming more difficult for NSSA, and more websites are now routing traffic through HTTPS. Blocking unwanted traffic especially social media sites during working hours on the network and optimizing internet access for employees was a key requirement for us. With Untangle NGFW Web Filter, our team of network administrators have complete visibility into and control over all traffic flowing through the network.