Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Check Point Virtual Systems vs. Kerio Control and other solutions. Updated: July 2020.
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We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Unfortunately in Cisco, only the hardware was good.
The traffic inspection and the Firepower engine are the most valuable features. It gives you full details, application details, traffic monitoring, and the threats. It gives you all the containers the user is using, especially at the application level. The solution also provides application visibility and control.
If we look at the Cisco ASA without Firepower, then one of the most valuable features is the URL filtering.
It's easy to integrate ASA with other Cisco security products. When you understand the technology, it's not a big deal. It's very simple.
The benefits we see from the ASA are connected to teleworking as well as, of course, having the basic functionality of a firewall in place and the prevention of attacks.
On the network side, where you create your rules for allowing traffic — what can come inside and what can go out — that works perfectly, if you know what you want to achieve. It protects you.
If you have a solution that is creating a script and you need to deploy many implementations, you can create a script in the device and it will be the same for all. After that, you just have to do the fine tuning.
They provide DDoS protection and multi-factor authentication. That is a good option as it enables work-from-home functionality.
The most valuable feature for us is the cluster support.
As per the solution's blade design, there are many options. For example, you have to buy a UTM blade and an advanced malware blade, etc. If the blade license is there, we can configure from the firewall GUI.
A unique architecture makes this product stand out from other solutions.
The IPS, application and URL filtering, as well as Identity Awareness, are all very valuable features.
We find Check Point valuable because they are 100% focused on security. It totally closes the potential vulnerability channel. We can check our mail and our attachments and we can scan everything easily. We get an immediate report about the situation of the attachments. We can discover if the target's security attack was started from phishing, etc. We also enjoy using the additional features that protect our internal customer from targeted attacks.
The program is very stable.
The most valuable feature of this solution is that you can start off with a simple firewall and expand it to UTM.
It's a high-performance device. The network performance is also really good. We check how much time it takes for the servers. Our network performance has increased since using this solution.
The ease of use in the GUI itself is the most valuable feature. The GUI is really the best part of it. We like the traffic rules so we can control who can get to what. It's easy to determine the flow of the traffic itself so we aren't having to guess through command lines and reading out basically command-driven output. It's just a very easy-to-use interface. The interface is the best part of the product.
I love the VPN that we set up. A few of us have it on our computers so that if we leave, we can still access the stores. And we can work from home if needed. When I sign into that Kerio VPN, it links me like I'm sitting in the store. It puts me in our secure network so that I can sign on to each individual store and I can run numbers... If I have to work from home, it's so much faster than the way we used to do it.
The comprehensiveness of the security features that Kerio Control provides us with is good. Before GFI had it, they would have more updates. The updates have been slower, but I like the things that they keep adding like the ability to block by country. I use pretty much every feature.
I want to have access to my computer from the outside and Kerio Control plays a role because it has a VPN... It is more reliable because it's a smaller group of computers to target for hackers and the like. The VPN works very well. I use it to work remotely very easily and exchange information, both to and from the location where it's deployed, and there have been no problems there.
When one of the employees of my customers is using the VPN Client, I have created for them that they will always get a message. When the VPN Client connects to Kerio Control from the outside, they will get an email so they know when they are connected and when they are disconnected what is happening to their network.
The traffic insight page or the administrative portal is really helpful because you can see all the internet usage down to the point where you can see if it's big files or streams. It gives us a good view of what the internet usage is of users who are coupled to an IP address. That way, if there are problems with, for example, a lot of data usage or problems with the connection, we can narrow it down to a single user or server and address the problem. It's really helpful for diagnostic data.
It is very comprehensive and simple. It has all the active protections. It's updated. We love that you can set how often it is updated so you can work what is right for you. A large company with a lot of bandwidth can update the virus definitions and security definitions hourly, if they want. A smaller site that's remote, where maybe updating the definitions will eat into the bandwidth, we can schedule those more to go later at night. It's very flexible and works for us in all types of situations. This is great because then we don't have to learn seven different products to be able to work with seven different scenarios.
The most valuable feature is the reliability of VPN capabilities. The VPN has been very reliable and secure. The security has been very good and the VPN connections are reliable in that they stay up. We don't have a lot of problems with downtime and that type of thing.
In NGFW, Cisco should be aligned with the new technology and inspection intelligence because Cisco is far behind in this pipeline.
Security generally requires integration with many devices, and the management side of that process could be enhanced somewhat. It would help if there was a clear view of the integrations and what the easiest way to do them is.
One area where the ASA could be improved is that it doesn't have AMP. When you get an ASA with the Firepower model, ASA with FTD, then you have advanced malware protection.
If I want to activate IPS features on it, I have to buy another license. If I want Cisco AnyConnect, I have to buy another license. That's where we have challenges.
Cisco missed the mark with all the configuration steps. They are a pain and, when doing them, it looks as if we're using a very old technology — yet the technology itself is not old, it's very good. But the front-end configuration is very tough.
Cisco provides us with application visibility and control, although it's not a complete solution compared to other vendors. Cisco needs to work on the application behavior side of things, in particular when it comes to the behavior of SSL traffic.
It is expensive.
We were also not too thrilled when Cisco announced that in the upcoming new-gen ASA, iOS was not going to be supported, or if you install them, they will not be able to be managed through the Sourcefire. However, it seems like Cisco is moving away from the ASA iOS to the Sourcefire FireSIGHT firmware for the ASA. We haven't had a chance to test it out.
Our biggest complaint concerns the high resource usage for IDP/IPS, as we cannot turn on all of the features even with new hardware.
If you compare the GUI with the Palo Alto and Forcepoint in the Cisco, they're very easy. Check Point, due to its design, is a little bit complex. They should make the GUI easy to use so that anyone can understand it easily, like Fortinet's GUI. Many companies end up using Fortinet because the GUI is very easy, and there's no need for training. They just deploy the box and do the configuration.
It can be difficult to install properly without prior training
Sometimes, if you aren't familiar with the solution, it can be a bit complex, but it does become easier to use with time. However, every time they launch a new version, it becomes more complex and you need to take time to get familiar with all the changes. For every version that they upgrade, you need to upskill yourself.
The stability of the solution could be improved, but this is the problem of all the solutions in the market. This isn't just a problem specific to Check Point.
It is a very expensive program and there are additional costs despite the standard licensing fees.
The management console can be simplified because at the moment, it is a bit of a challenge to use.
The initial setup is difficult. It took me three tries to get it right. The setup took two or three hours.
The security part of the software, like virus scanning, website, traffic monitoring, things like that, can take a beating on the appliance. And when there's a lot of things going on, the system can get bogged down. The actual security functionality of it needs a little bit more work, which I believe they are remedying or attempting to remedy at this time, but that's the downfall at this time.
When we did our last update, we had some trouble with the initial syncing process to get our messaging to go through. But we were also moving a store and a lot was changing during that process. I don't think it was on Kerio's end. It just coincided with the update. Once we got our third-party IT guy involved it was resolved very quickly.
I can no longer renew my subscription directly with GFI but we have to go through third-party resellers like CDW. The first time I did it with CDW. I went to CDW and it was almost like they didn't even know anything. They didn't know what package I was supposed to get. Then after I got it, it took almost five days to get everything working.
I would like to be able to automatically send email from Kerio Control and have it tell me what my external IPs are, because on one of my lines I have a fixed IP address and on the other it is variable. If there were a permanent way for me to figure out, "Okay, my current external VPN and my firm IP is this," it would help. I need to know the IP address to connect with the VPN and, at the moment, one of the lines sometimes changes its IP address without me knowing it. It's a hassle to figure out what it is.
After the takeover by GFI, one of the things that Kerio built was MyKerio environment. This has not been very reliable because I get many messages that MyKerio is not functioning. For some reason, there are things that they changed and it is not very reliable at this moment, instead I have to connect to the firewall to see what is happening.
If you have to dive deeper into the firewall or any other features, then you really have to read up a bit about how to set it up properly. Some of my colleagues, in the beginning, jumped in and made a bunch of rules but then it got really messy. If Kerio had a template or guidelines for best practices, at the beginning, that would really help. With Kerio Control it's basically 'find out for yourself.'
I would like to see a little improvement in their technical support when you have a problem. I may be a little jaded because I came from Kerio when we could call and get a person on the phone who worked on the product. Every tech had their own demo setup. They had instant messaging capability with the developers. If we found a problem, then we could get a result for it quickly. Now, the product seems to be 24 hours. They have also gone to the model that if you need quicker support, then they now charge you additional for the exact same level of support that they used to give. I am assuming it's the exact same level of support that they say it is. I'm not paying extra for it. That's the biggest flaw with the product.
One of the problems we do have causes problems with the VPN. The software slows the throughput down too much. You could have a one-gigabit connection from the internet, and it slows it down to the area of upload and download is extremely slow. There's too much content filtering at that point.
Pricing and Cost Advice
Always consider what you might need to reduce your wasted time and invest it in other solutions.
There is room for improvement in the pricing when compared to the market. Although, when you compare the benefits of support from Cisco, you can adjust the value and it becomes comparable, because you usually need very good support. So you gain value there with this device.
When it comes to Cisco, the price of everything is higher. Cisco firewalls are expensive, but we get support from Cisco, and that support is very active.
It's a brilliant firewall, and the fact that it comes with a perpetual license really does go far in terms of helping the organization in not having to deal with those costs on an annual basis. That is a pain point when it comes to services like the ones we have on Fortigate. That's where we really give Cisco firewalls the thumbs up.
Cisco is expensive, but you do get benefits for the price.
In terms of costs, other solutions are more expensive than Cisco. Palo Alto is more expensive than Cisco.
Pricing varies on the model and the features we are using. It could be anywhere from $600 to $1000 to up to $7,000 per year, depending on what model and what feature sets are available to us.
We used Check Point and the two are comparable. Cost was really what put us onto the ASAs... the price tag for Check Point was exorbitantly more than what it is for the ASA solution.
We pay approximately €150,000 ($166,000 USD) per year.
It is more expensive than other solutions and would be more competetive in the market if it came down in price.
On average, it is normally on the lower end, being less expensive than Palo Alto or Cisco.
It is a good fit for SMBs because of its maintainability. When you want to keep your costs low, then Kerio Control is a very good solution. It's not an expensive product that is well integrated. It has a complete set of features within it that make it a very strong product.
GFI has made a stupid decision regarding small office licensing. For offices where there are only three to five employees and had five years towards a five user product, they now force these customers to a 10-year user license. I really don't understand it. It's a stupid decision for the small offices who want a good solution for security because they'll probably decide to go to another product. Why should they buy something that they don't use?
The fixed model of users and devices is a bit of a problem for us. We want to be able to expand it fast and not have to contact our supplier first to get a license... If they had a larger fixed price with unlimited users or devices, that would help. Now, it's five users each time. A pack of 100 or 200 users for a certain price would make it more dynamic and user-scalable.
It is priced low enough for entry-level, but it has the power to grow with a company without them having to replace it.
The biggest advice that I could probably give people is when you buy the solution be prepared to either buy the unlimited license or buy more licenses than you think. Each user license gives you one employee and each a user gives you five devices. In the world nowadays where everybody has a cellphone, tablet, desktop, and laptop, that's four devices. You still get one more device per person. That covers your servers and back-ends.
Our clients see ROI with Kerio Control, as they are saving bandwidth costs.
Licensing is easier with Kerio Control. With FortiGate, we realized the licensing is really hectic, because if you skip one year, you have to back pay that year. If you skip two years, you have to back pay two years. With Kerio Control, if a license expires, one year later you can just reactivate and go on.
My advice is to use your own hardware, and do not use theirs.
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Also Known As
|Cisco ASA, Adaptive Security Appliance, ASA, Cisco Sourcefire Firewalls||Check Point VSX|
Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) is Cisco's end-to-end software solution and core operating system that powers the Cisco ASA product series. This software solution provides enterprise-level firewall capabilities for all types of ASA products, including blades, standalone appliances and virtual devices. Adaptive Security Appliance provides protection to organizations of all sizes, and allows end-users to access information securely anywhere, at any time, and through any device.
Adaptive Security Appliance is also fully compatible with other key security technologies, and so provides organizations with an all-encompassing security solution.
Block more threats and quickly mitigate those that do breach your defenses with the industry’s first threat-focused NGFW.
Check Point Virtual Systems taps the power of virtualization to consolidate and simplify security for private clouds while delivering a lower total cost of ownership. It enables customized security against evolving network threats with the extensible Software Blade Architecture. Virtual Systems is supported on Check Point Appliances, including the 61000 Security System as well as open servers.
Learn more about Virtual systems
Kerio Control brings together next-generation firewall capabilities -- including a network firewall and router, intrusion detection and prevention (IPS), gateway anti-virus, VPN, and web content and application filtering. These comprehensive capabilities and unmatched deployment flexibility make Kerio Control the ideal choice for small and mid-sized businesses.
Learn more about Cisco ASA NGFW
Learn more about Check Point Virtual Systems
Learn more about Kerio Control
|There are more than one million Adaptive Security Appliances deployed globally. Top customers include First American Financial Corp., Genzyme, Frankfurt Airport, Hansgrohe SE, Rio Olympics, The French Laundry, Rackspace, and City of Tomorrow.||Bentley Systems, Almaviva TSF S.p.A, Yankuang Group, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.||Triton Technical, McDonald's|
Financial Services Firm20%
Comms Service Provider9%
Computer Software Company28%
Comms Service Provider21%
Financial Services Firm29%
Computer Software Company40%
Comms Service Provider20%
Financial Services Firm22%
Computer Software Company22%
Comms Service Provider32%
Computer Software Company17%
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