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Check Point Power-1 [EOL] Competitors and Alternatives

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# Comparisons
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Read reviews of Check Point Power-1 [EOL] competitors and alternatives

Manuel Gellida
Owner at Dinamica en Microsistemas de Informatica, S.A. de C.V.
Reseller
Top 10
Easy to use and deploy with an improved pricing structure in place

Pros and Cons

  • "The initial setup is pretty easy."
  • "They need to allow their solution to integrate with other products and not just other Sophos solutions."

What is our primary use case?

My clients are mostly based in the government. They are my core clients. I install the solution for my clients.

What is most valuable?

The solution is very easy to use. 

Of course, we have the skills, however, it's very easy for us to deploy the solution. That's one of the valuable features. 

They have a communication between the endpoint and the firewall which is very, very useful for security purposes.

Pricing is now pretty good. They changed the pricing structure a few months ago.

The initial setup is pretty easy.

What needs improvement?

The integration could be a bit better. They need to allow their solution to integrate with other products and not just other Sophos solutions.

Sophos has a feature that in my opinion is very limited. They don't have enough VPNs on their models. They have the XG 750, which is a sizeable appliance. On those models, they used to have not enough VPNs. They always were short on that area. 

Pricing used to be very bad, however, they've adjusted their strategy recently. 

The product needs to improve its marketing in Mexico. It's not a well-recognized product in our country.

The solution's technical support is very bad.

There is an overall lack of documentation in relation to features and capabilities. We need these to help explain aspects of the solution to our clients. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've used the solution since around 2014. I have about six years of experience at this point. It's been a while. I've definitely worked with the product in the last 12 months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is quite stable. There are no bugs and glitches. It doesn't crash and freeze. It's quite reliable. We don't have problems with it.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is very scalable. It is not a problem. Sometimes we have issues when we are trying to do something with a different traditional version of hardware as sometimes the new hardware has more ports. However, if we are talking about scalability in a huge customer, we can do it very easily. 

Mexico is very different than other countries and continents as here, when we say it's a big customer, we are talking about 2,000 to maybe 3,000 users. There aren't too many large-scale operations in the country. However, in general, for our area, we tend to deal with large-scale companies.

For a company that has maybe 1,000 users, Sophos seems to work very well. We have one operation with 10,000 endpoints and it is working quite well.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support from Sophos is very bad.

Sometimes we lose a project due to the fact that we need to solve some issues or answer questions. Things that may be technical but also involve the administrative side. I'm talking about licensing and the capabilities of the feature. We need some documentation, something we can show clients. They can better in those cases. They can either help us or supply us with what we need. 

In response time, they are terrible. In the area of technical knowledge, they are getting better, however, they aren't where they need to be. Right now, we are not satisfied with the level of support provided.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is not complex. However, here in Mexico, it's very complex to sell the product. The brand is not as well known.

That said, the process is pretty straightforward. 

The deployment times vary. It depends on the end-user and what they need. Sometimes, it's easy as they don't have too many policies. The more policies they have, the longer it takes.

In other cases, clients may have a lot of VPNs. We have to work on those VPNs, and we have to do a lot of routing. However, that depends on the customer. Not all are like that.

For one appliance, you just need one person for deployment and maintenance. If we are working a lot of VPNs, we would have to use more people. We need to involve maybe two or three individuals and re-apply the configuration in that case. 

What about the implementation team?

We handle the installation process ourselves. We do not need the assistance of consultants.

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

The pricing has recently changed on Sophos. Their licensing and cost structures are much more clear now. It's much better than it was.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Clients, in many cases, evaluate for Check Point, Forcepoint, and sometimes Fortinet. Occasionally, they may look at SonicWall, or Palo Alto however, the others are the main big competitors. 

Palo Alto is very expensive as are Check Point and Forcepoint. That's why we sometimes win the projects. We find Fortinet, is very, very hard to beat as they have a lot of market share, have a lot of marketing. Sophos doesn't have that presence, that marketing. Also, when you have to think about prices, Fortinet gives customers everything and it's hard to beat.

The biggest issue I've found with Sophos is the small number of VPNs that we can do compared to a similar appliance with Fortinet or in the same level center. In fact, many other brands offer more VPNs than Sophos.

What other advice do I have?

I'm a Sophos reseller.

We use multiple versions. We have worked with XG 460 and XG 135 and some others -such as XG 230. In those cases, sometimes it has been Rev 1 and in other cases Rev 2 in terms of the hardware versions.

I mostly work with on-premise deployments. The only item I have installed in the cloud is an email solution by Sophos.

I'd recommend the solution to other organizations. Overall, I would rate it at a nine 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: Reseller
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RF
Data Analyst at a hospitality company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Top 20
User-friendly, provides good access, and is fairly easy to implement

Pros and Cons

  • "It is a very user-friendly product."
  • "I don't have to see all the object groups that have been created on that firewall. That's just something that I would really appreciate on the CLA, even though it already exists on the GUI."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution in order to create access rules. That's what I use it for mostly. Sometimes, if I need to do some mapping, I may also leverage this product.  

What is most valuable?

In terms of access, the solution is great at making sure that the firewall has the right IPs, or that the right IPs are passing through where they should be. 

The product does a good job of making sure that the connection is one that the user can trust. It keeps everything secure.

From what I've already done with ASA, I've noted that it's a very simple solution. 

It is a very user-friendly product. I started with the GUI version. There are different versions. You could have the CLA, and the GUI version if you like. Both are really user-friendly and they're easy to learn. 

What needs improvement?

We haven't been working with the product for too long, and therefore I haven't really found any features that are lacking. So far, it's been pretty solid.

One of the things that would make my life easier on ASA, especially for the CLA, is if it had an ASBN feature, specifically for the CLA. This would allow you to be able to see at once where a particular object group is being used without having to copy out all the object groups that have already been created.

I don't have to see all the object groups that have been created on that firewall. That's just something that I would really appreciate on the CLA, even though it already exists on the GUI.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for six months now. It's been less than a year. It hasn't been too long just yet.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution has been quite stable.

Most of the clients that we deal with use this solution. No one has ever complained about having a breach or anything, to the best of my knowledge, even though we see some people combine different firewalls together, and use them alongside Cisco ASA. So far, we've not had any issue with Cisco ASA. It's reliable and keeps our clients safe.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I've never tried to scale the product. I haven't worked with it too long at this point. I wouldn't be able to comment on its scalability potential.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've never dealt with technical support yet. I can't speak to their level or response or their knowledge of the product.

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

In the past, I've worked with Check Point and Fortinet as well.

How was the initial setup?

I've been handling the implementation. So far, it's been good, even with no prior knowledge of the solution itself. It's my first time working with it.

On my team, lots of people are working on different aspects, and most of the setup is being done by those that have more knowledge about the firewall than we have. We don't have anything to do with the setup, we just make sure that we implement whatever connections the clients already have. It's already broken down that way, just to avoid as many mistakes as possible.

We already have a process for implementation based on the number of connections. The maximum we normally work on each connection is maybe 20 to 30 minutes. However, the process could be as little as one minute. It depends on how many connections we want to add at a time.

What about the implementation team?

We're handing the implementation via our own in-house team.

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

I'm just handling the implementation and therefore don't have any insights on the pricing aspect of the solution. I wouldn't be able to say how much the company pays or if the pricing is high or low.

That said, the pricing isn't an issue. It's more about what's best for the customer or the client. We want to give the client the best service, and very good protection. If a client begins to worry about pricing, we can't exactly guarantee the same level of safety.

What other advice do I have?

Our company has a partnership with Cisco.

We have different clients and therefore use different versions of the solution. Nobody wants to use an out-of-date version, and therefore, we work to keep everything updated.

Overall, I would rate the solution at a nine out of ten.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
UB
Solution Architect at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Reseller
Top 5
Easy to configure and manage, supports link load balancing, and it has superior throughput

Pros and Cons

  • "The most important feature, normally for small business customers, is link load balancing."
  • "If they had better integration with security products, such as Cisco ISE or Rapid Threat Containment, then it would be an improvement."

What is our primary use case?

We are a system integrator and Fortigate is one of the firewalls that we implement for our clients. I am a solution architect.

Our primary use for this firewall is the IPS.

What is most valuable?

One of the things I like best is the ease of configuration.

Management-wise, it is very good.

The most important feature, normally for small business customers, is link load balancing.

The firewall throughput is very good. Most of the customers in this region use FortiGate for their data center firewalls, and the main reason is because of its high throughput.

What needs improvement?

Fortinet is good in terms of security and threat prevention, but they are not leading. For example, the signature database can be improved.

If they had better integration with security products, such as Cisco ISE or Rapid Threat Containment, then it would be an improvement. Customers that have ISE implemented are able to provide inputs based on malicious traffic, and then ISE will automatically block it.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been working with Fortinet FortiGate for the past two years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Stability-wise, they are good at the job of a data center firewall. For a perimeter firewall, it is for smaller customers, preferably.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability depends on the design and how it was done. You have to think about the next five years. We get lots of new updates on the older versions and if the product is still in support then the new features will be included.

How are customer service and technical support?

The responsiveness of the support depends on the level of support that you have. If you have premium support then you will get immediate access to them. Otherwise, you have to wait for some time, perhaps an hour, before they get back to you.

On the technical details, there are different levels of access. Once you have engineer access then most of the cases are going to get resolved, or otherwise, they will go to their development team.

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

In addition to FortiGate, we are using Cisco SFR.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward. We have field configuration guides that we follow and you don't need to have much in-depth knowledge to set it up initially. However, performing the fine-tuning requires that you have proper training on the device.

Deploying the firewall for a new customer will be completed within two to three days, or perhaps a week at the most.

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

Compared to vendors like Cisco and Palo Alto, FortiGate is the cheapest. However, they only have a small segment of the market. Fortinet is trying to appeal to small and medium-sized customers, and I think that their prices should be a little lower for this segment.

On the high-end devices, it is fine. However, the problem is that their subscription price is very high. If you purchase a one-year subscription with the hardware and then you want to renew for the second year, it is very costly. Your whole price ends up being very high.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

As a system integrator, we sell a lot of similar solutions from a variety of vendors. We have found that the Fortinet firewall has a much better throughput than that of the other vendors.

If a large customer is looking for a perimeter firewall then we suggest another vendor, such as Check Point or Palo Alto.

What other advice do I have?

FortiGate is a product that we recommend and we have migrated many customers from other vendors. FortiGate is a better option, although small customers don't care much about security. They only care about basic security. There are only a very few who are really concerned about it and most of them don't have a proper IT group in their company. 

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
PF
IT Specialist at a transportation company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Reliable, easy to use, and offers strong security feaures

Pros and Cons

  • "Palo Alto has better and finer controls than, say, Cisco or Check Point."
  • "The solution needs a series of OS changes."

What is our primary use case?

The solution was a firewall that bridged the internal systems with their DMC equipment and/or restricted systems access that wasn't generally available to anyone outside of the organization.

How has it helped my organization?

The solution gets the access controls down to an even more precise part of the network traffic. It's not just any user going to an IP address or going to a port to get on the network. It's very thorough.

What is most valuable?

Our organization liked the fact that it wasn't just firewalls that handled addresses and ports. It also handles actual URL inspections. 

The solution is at the cutting edge of technology. 

The solution has good at controlling restricted access.

Palo Alto has better and finer controls than, say, Cisco or Check Point.

The solution is very strong from a security standpoint.

What needs improvement?

It's like anything else. What's good today might not be in a day, a week, a month, etc. The solution needs to constantly be adapting and updating.

The solution needs a series of OS changes.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using the solution for five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is rather excellent. It is really stable unless somebody messes up a configuration. We didn't face any bugs or crashes or have any issues with glitches.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution was scalable for our purposes. We distributed it to three or four different locations and these were all internal edge firewalls. It wasn't more than a half a day to get any new location up, once the network equipment was in place. (For example, switch hardware, cables, etc.). We would just bring in the hardware, set it up, connect to it, and finish turning it on.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is excellent. There haven't been problems that they couldn't resolve quickly. Pretty much are all cases that we had were dealt with to our satisfaction.

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

Prior to Palo Alto, we had been using Check Point. There wasn't a technical reason that we switched. As an organization, we just periodically switch technologies.

How was the initial setup?

I can't really answer any questions related to the initial setup as there was another person who handled it. However, I do believe it was straightforward for them. My understanding was that deployment only took a day. It wasn't a long process.

What about the implementation team?

For the initial deployment, I'm pretty sure they used a subject matter expert. After that, the organization did not need outside assistance. One of our own team members ended up becoming the subject matter expert for a lot of the implementation strategy.

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

I don't have an idea of what the licensing costs are.

What other advice do I have?

I'd advise companies considering setting up the solution to make sure they have a trained team. If the team doesn't have any expertise with this type of firewall, then they've got to take some training. The training's pretty good and once you understand the concepts, it's pretty quick to put together. 

At the time we implemented it, it was easier than Check Point and the Check Point had a lot of similar capabilities. It also offered finer filtering on what was going to be allowed through various parts of the firewall ports. 

I'd rate the solution ten out of ten due to its reliability and ease, and the consistency of configuration.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
DM
Associate Consultant at SoftwareONE
Reseller
Top 20
Good URL filtering with helpful technical support and good scalability

Pros and Cons

  • "Technical support has been quite helpful in the past."
  • "The company should update the URL filtering database. They need to enhance the URL filtering and make it easier to customize."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily provide the solution to our customers.

I don't create the use cases. I just deploy as required.

Largely, the solution is used for protection. It can be used for various purposes, including URL filtering, spam filtering, and VPN.

What is most valuable?

The URL filtering is the most valuable aspect of the product. I've used the VPN for that. It's of great value to the customer.

The solution is stable.

The product can scale well.

Technical support has been quite helpful in the past.

What needs improvement?

The company should work to improve its VPN capabilities.

For the most part, there aren't really any features or services that are missing.

The implementation may be a bit more complex for a person who doesn't have much experience with the process.

The company should update the URL filtering database. They need to enhance the URL filtering and make it easier to customize.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been dealing with the solution for the past two years or so.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is mostly stable. We've just had a little configuration issue around the access and net policy. However, beyond that, it's been pretty reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution scales well. If a company needs to scale, it can do so with ease.

How are customer service and technical support?

Lately, I have not needed their services, however, I have contacted them in the past. I find them to be very helpful and responsive. They have a good support team. We are quite satisfied with them.

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

I also work with Palo Alto and Check Point.

How was the initial setup?

You cannot say this is a simple product. Comparatively, to other products, such as Fortinet's Firewall, it's much more complex. It has an Azure Server client-server architecture. You need to install the entire management server separately and you need the client's GUI to manage the console. 

Deployment takes a while. It may be ten to 15 days for a medium-sized organization. I've mostly installed this in mid-sized companies.

There is some maintenance required. Often, we offer a monthly health checkup to our clients and we would provide maintenance services. 

What about the implementation team?

I handle the installation for clients. I understand the process and can do everything for them.

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

This is an expensive product compared to Fortinet, however, it is cheaper than Palo Alto. That said, I can't speak to exact pricing. A different team manages the sales and licensing aspects. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

You can compare this solution to a few other vendors. For example, most of the features available in this product are also available in other products as well. If you're talking about Check Point NG and Palo Alto, Forcepoint is very similar. Palo Alto and Fortinet use a single appliance. However, Check Point and the Forcepoint have a  server-client with the architecture actually. We need to install the GUI from that. And a management server and engine we'll install separately too.

What other advice do I have?

We have a partnership with Forcepoint. We are resellers of the solution.

We have clients that have the solution, and therefore we tend to deal with different versions of the solution. It might not always be the latest.

I would recommend the solution. I would rate it at 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: Reseller
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