We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:
"The IPS, as well as the malware features, are the two things that we use the most and they're very valuable."
"The protection and security features, like URL filtering, the inspection, and the IPS feature, are also very valuable for us. We don't have IT staff at most of the sites so for us it's important to have a robust firewall at those sites"
"We can easily track unauthorized users and see where traffic is going."
"With the FMC and the FirePOWERs, the ability to quickly replace a piece of hardware without having to have a network outage is useful. Also, the ability to replace a piece of equipment and deploy the config that the previous piece of equipment had is pretty useful."
"They wanted to leverage something which is equivalent that can give them the next gen features like application awareness and intrusion protection. So that is a major reason they were looking forward to this. The original ASA firewall did not have these features. This was the major reason the customer moved on to Cisco Firepower Threat Defense (FTD). Now they can go ahead and leverage those functionalities."
"The Firepower+ISE+AMP for endpoint integration is something that really stands it out with other vendor solutions. They have something called pxGrid and i think it is already endorsed by IETF. This allows all devices on the network to communicate."
"Being able to determine our active users vs inactive users has led us to increased productivity through visibility. Also, if an issue was happening with our throughput, then we wouldn't know without research. Now, notifications are more proactively happening."
"One of the most valuable features is the AMP. It's very good and very reliable when it comes to malicious activities, websites, and viruses."
"The information coming from Talos does a good job... I like the fact that Cisco is working with them and getting the information from them and updating the firewall."
"For us, the most valuable features are the IPX and the Sourcefire Defense Center module. That gives us visibility into the traffic coming in and going out, and gives us the heads-up if there is a potential outbreak or potential malicious user who is trying to access the site. It also helps us see traffic generated by an end device trying to reach out to the world."
"The most valuable feature is that the encryption is solid."
"They provide DDoS protection and multi-factor authentication. That is a good option as it enables work-from-home functionality."
"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."
"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 most valuable feature is that we didn't have any problems with Meraki MX."
"We've had no issues with the scalability or the stability of this solution"
"It has the most advanced security features, for example, layer 3 and layer 7 firewall capabilities and the end team and IPS protection. It also has IPS, and it has very good functioning of cloning services. You don't actually have to touch the device. If you have multiple companies in different countries, you don't really require this device to be touched. You can get it delivered directly to any office of a country, and then you can simply put your configuration over the cloud. It's very simplified and easy to manage. It gives a very good granular visibility about your network. Earlier, a lot of things were lacking in the network. We were unable to identify where the problem was, but after implementing Meraki MX, we are able to dig down and identify where is the problem. We can easily and quickly identify the sources and the root causes of the issues."
"Point-to-point VPNs can dynamically follow IP changes with no need for static IPs."
"Dual WAN connections are greatly simplified and point-to-point VPNs automatically connect regardless of what WAN connection is active."
"It has very good features; it's easy to use, configure, set up, and deploy."
"It is very easy to use and manage. It is also very easy to scale."
"In general, Meraki MX is easy to work with."
"For the new line of FTDs, the performance could be improved. We sometimes have issues with the 41 series, depending what we activate. If we activate too many intrusion policies, it affects the CPU."
"The user interface for the Firepower management console is a little bit different from traditional Cisco management tools. If you look at products we already use, like Cisco Prime or other products that are cloud-based, they have a more modern user interface for managing the products. For Firepower, the user interface is not very user-friendly. It's a little bit confusing sometimes."
"We would like to see improvement in recovery. If there is an issue that forces us to do recovery, we have to restart or reboot. In addition, sometimes we have downtime during the maintenance windows. If Cisco could enhance this, so that upgrades would not necessarily require downtime, that would be helpful."
"We had an event recently where we had inbound traffic for SIP and we experienced an attack against our SIP endpoint, such that they were able to successfully make calls out... Both CTR, which is gathering data from multiple solutions that the vendor provides, as well as the FMC events connection, did not show any of those connections because there was not a NAT inbound which said either allow it or deny it."
"I was just trying to learn how this product actually operates and one thing that I see from internal processing is it does fire-walling and then sends it to the IPS model and any other model that needs to be performed. For example, content checking or filtering will be done in a field processing manner. That is something that causes delays in the network, from a security perspective. That is something that can be improved upon. Palo Alto already has implemented this as a pilot passed processing. So they put the same stream of data across multiple modules at the same time and see if it is giving a positive result by using an XR function. So, something similar can be done in the Cisco Firepower. Instead of single processing or in a sequential manner, they can do something similar to pile processing. Internal function that is something that they can improve upon."
"The product line does not address the SMB market as it is supposed to do. Cisco already has an on-premises sandbox solution."
"The central management tool is not comfortable to use. You need to have a specific skill set. This is an important improvement for management because I would like to log into Firepower, see the dashboard, and generate a real-time report, then I question my team."
"One feature I would like to see, that Firepower doesn't have, is email security. Perhaps in the future, Cisco will integrate Cisco Umbrella with Firepower. I don't see why we should have to pay for two separate products when both could be integrated in one box."
"Our latest experience with a code upgrade included a number of bugs and issues that we ran into. So more testing with their code, before it hits us, would help."
"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."
"It is expensive."
"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."
"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."
"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."
"Management can be improved in Meraki MX."
"The security is not as strong as it could be"
"From the improvement perspective, we need more monitoring capabilities. We want to have full-based access visibility, such as, what is happening when something is trying to reach and it is denying. We cannot see some parts of it. The integration of active directory with this product is not very fruitful. It has some bugs or lacks in the functionality of active directory integration. We are unable to identify where exactly and whether it has really applied our policy."
"Meraki tech support staff have a lot more visibility into your network than you do, which is frustrating at times. I understand the approach is to keep the dashboard easier to understand. This will frustrate more advanced users at times."
"In the next release, because the security is pretty basic, I think they could include additional security features."
"In general, the SD-WAN feature needs to be improved. The load sharing and load balancing of the traffic should be improved. I have had some problems with these features in the past."
"As far as what needs to be improved — nothing really comes to mind. It does what we need it to do."
"You can only have one tunnel in the whole infrastructure — one tunnel with one device."
"Cisco's pricing is high, at times, for what they provide."
"The one-time cost is affordable, but the maintenance cost and the Smart Net costs need to be reduced. They're too high."
"We normally license on a yearly basis. The hardware procurement cost should be considered. If you're virtual maybe that cost is eradicated and just the licensing cost is applied. If you have hardware the cost must be covered by you. All the shipping charges will be paid by you also. I don't thing there are any other hidden charges though."
"Cisco pricing is premium. However, they gave us a 50 to 60 percent discount."
"There are additional implementation and validation costs."
"Cisco, as we all know, is expensive, but for the money you are paying, you know that you are also getting top-notch documentation as well as support if needed."
"This product requires licenses for advanced features including Snort, IPS, and malware detection."
"This product is expensive."
"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."
"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."
"In terms of costs, other solutions are more expensive than Cisco. Palo Alto is more expensive than Cisco."
"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."
"Cisco is expensive, but you do get benefits for the price."
"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."
"The licensing is a bit off because the physical firewall is cheaper than the virtual one. We only have the physical ones as they are cheaper than the virtual ones. We only use the physical firewalls because of the price difference."
"The price varies depending on the hardware platform as well as the type of license and whether you're adding security or not."
"The license cost depends on the box. We acquired a different product line. We are dealing with MX appliance now, that is, MX6, MX54, MX100, MX250, MX450. Every box has got an identity, and it has got its own specification. Every box has got a different license fee. We deployed Meraki MX in UAE when it was not a mature product. We took a risk, but we were successful. We saved a huge amount of money after implementing and removing all the MPLS and leased lines. We got a broadband connection because Meraki MX could work on a broadband connection. We have drastically saved a very good amount of money, which was one of the successful things apart from the successful solution."
"Other content filtering solutions that I have used had more bells and whistles, but given the cost, complexity, and management overhead, I am very pleased with Meraki’s solution."
"The price is slightly increased, but reasonable."
"It is a good global solution in terms of the price and features, but because we sell this solution in dollars, sometimes we don't get to sell this solution in Brazil because the dollar is very expensive. The price of every project is different. It varies depending upon the project, scenario, and client."
"The pricing could always be improved — especially with the shape the economy is in at the moment."
"Meraki is the best option — based on the price and the features available."
"Its licensing cost could be better."
Cisco NGFW firewalls deliver advanced threat defense capabilities to meet diverse needs, from
small/branch offices to high performance data centers and service providers. Available in a wide
range of models, Cisco NGFW can be deployed as a physical or virtual appliance. Advanced threat
defense capabilities include Next-generation IPS (NGIPS), Security Intelligence (SI), Advanced
Malware Protection (AMP), URL filtering, Application Visibility and Control (AVC), and flexible VPN
features. Inspect encrypted traffic and enjoy automated risk ranking and impact flags to reduce event
volume so you can quickly prioritize threats. Cisco NGFW firewalls are also available with clustering
for increased performance, high availability configurations, and more.
Cisco Firepower NGFWv is the virtualized version of Cisco's Firepower NGFW firewall. Widely
deployed in leading private and public clouds, Cisco NGFWv automatically scales up/down to meet
the needs of dynamic cloud environments and high availability provides resilience. Also, Cisco NGFWv
can deliver micro-segmentation to protect east-west network traffic.
Cisco firewalls provide consistent security policies, enforcement, and protection across all your
environments. Unified management for Cisco ASA and FTD/NGFW physical and virtual firewalls is
delivered by Cisco Defense Orchestrator (CDO), with cloud logging also available. And with Cisco
SecureX included with every Cisco firewall, you gain a cloud-native platform experience that enables
greater simplicity, visibility, and efficiency.
Learn more about Cisco’s firewall solutions, including virtual appliances for public and private cloud.
Cisco ASA firewalls deliver enterprise-class firewall functionality with highly scalable and flexible VPN capabilities to meet diverse needs, from small/branch offices to high performance data centers and service providers. Available in a wide range of models, Cisco ASA can be deployed as a physical or virtual appliance. Flexible VPN capabilities include support for remote access, site-to-site, and clientless VPN. Also, select appliances support clustering for increased performance, VPN load balancing to optimize available resources, advanced high availability configurations, and more.
Cisco ASAv is the virtualized version of the Cisco ASA firewall. Widely deployed in leading private and public clouds, Cisco ASAv is ideal for remote worker and multi-tenant environments. The solution scales up/down to meet performance requirements and high availability provides resilience. Also, Cisco ASAv can deliver micro-segmentation to protect east-west network traffic.
Cisco firewalls provide consistent security policies, enforcement, and protection across all your environments. Unified management for Cisco ASA and FTD/NGFW physical and virtual firewalls is delivered by Cisco Defense Orchestrator (CDO), with cloud logging also available. And with Cisco SecureX included with every Cisco firewall, you gain a cloud-native platform experience that enables greater simplicity, visibility, and efficiency.
Cisco ASA Firewall is ranked 5th in Firewalls with 64 reviews while Meraki MX is ranked 1st in Unified Threat Management (UTM) with 16 reviews. Cisco ASA Firewall is rated 8.0, while Meraki MX is rated 8.4. The top reviewer of Cisco ASA Firewall writes "Gives us visibility into potential outbreaks as well as malicious users trying to access the site". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Meraki MX writes "Makes it easy to stay on top of everything for security". Cisco ASA Firewall is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate, Palo Alto Networks WildFire, Juniper SRX, SonicWall TZ and pfSense, whereas Meraki MX is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate, Sophos XG, SonicWall NSa, Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls and SonicWall TZ. See our Cisco ASA Firewall vs. Meraki MX report.
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