Fortinet FortiGate vs. pfSense

As of May 2019, Fortinet FortiGate is ranked 1st in Firewalls with 60 reviews vs pfSense which is ranked 4th in Firewalls with 28 reviews. The top reviewer of Fortinet FortiGate writes "The IPsec tunnels are very easily created, and quite interoperable with devices from other vendors". The top reviewer of pfSense writes "The terminal gets access to our own server inside the network and if one internet fails, then the other one is still up". Fortinet FortiGate is most compared with Cisco ASA NGFW, Sophos UTM and pfSense. pfSense is most compared with Sophos UTM, OPNsense and Fortinet FortiGate. See our Fortinet FortiGate vs. pfSense report.
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Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Fortinet FortiGate vs. pfSense and other solutions. Updated: May 2019.
339,526 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:

Pros
Integration with all the other Cisco tools is valuable.We moved from a legacy firewall to the ASA with FirePOWER, increasing our Internet Edge defense dramatically.Cisco ASA NGFW significantly improves our bank. It protects any high-value products that we use from hackers, viruses, malware, and script-bots. It gives us metrics on network traffic as well as what kind of attacks we are getting from the outside.Right now, Cisco ASA NGFW has given us a lot of improvement. We are planning to move to a new facility and will be a much larger organization.The feature that I found most valuable is the overall stability of the product.The stability of Cisco ASA is excellent compared to other products on the market. Because of our customer experience as an integrator company, our clients never report any performance problems. We have a good performance reputation with Cisco ASA.I would say the Firepower module is most valuable. I'm trying more to transition to this kind firewall. I had to study a little on Palo Alto Networks equipment. There is a lot I have to learn about the difference.We have multiple secure internal networks linked with our plants. We are from a oil company, so we have multiple plant areas which need to have restricted network access. Therefore, we are using it for restricting access to the plant area.

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The features that we have found most valuable are the SSL VPN and the User Portal.We have been able to offer several services to customers in a single box.The most important features with FortiGate are the web filter and application controls. We can control our internet usage and use the web filter for application purposes.It is user friendly, and has all the features you need.We are very happy with the general bandwidth agility we have seen from one website to another website.The most important features of Fortinet FortiGate are the Intrusion Prevention System (IPS) and firewall control applications.Fortinet FortiGate is scalable for our users. Right now, we have almost 70 users. We do not have any plan to increase our usage of FortiGate. For maintaining the firewall solution, one staff member is enough.This solution made it very easy to manage our bandwidth.

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This solution has helped our organization by protecting our network from attacks.I had some outages in the network and we provide services for our company. We sell mobile credits. The terminal gets access to our own server inside the network and if one internet fails, then the other one is still up and we have a back-up link on the devices.My company mainly works in the health and educational domain, schools and universities. I prevent the improper use of content from schools and universities. I defend the medical records for the patients in our hospitals. That is the main use case for me for the firewall.We generally use it because it's cheap. When we need something more robust we use Barracuda and Sony Wireless Routers. For certain clients, we use pfSense because it's compatible with the VoIP platform.Super easy to manage. Anyone who has been working with firewalls can handle it.There is good documentation with a fantastic community and enterprise support.The ability to perform packet captures on the command line and via the GUI is useful for diagnosing problems.It is easy to manage. I don't have to have highly trained engineers. A mid-level employee who is conversant with firewalls can take care of managing it.

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Cons
With regards to stability, we had a critical bug come out during our evaluation... not good.The product would be improved if the GUI could be brought into the 21st Century.Cisco should improve its user interface design. There is a deep learning curve to the product if you are a newcomer.There is no support here in Georgia. If something goes wrong, support is not always very helpful with the other firewalls or other products.One of my main concerns, an area that could use improvement is in adjusting the need to buy a license to enable features.Usually, the customers are satisfied, but I am going to recommend that all clients upgrade to FirePOWER management. I want Cisco to improve the feature called anti-spam. We use a Cisco only email solution, that's why we need the anti-spam on email facility.The installation and integration of Cisco ASA with FirePOWER can be improved. The management with Fortigate is easier than Cisco ASA on FirePOWER. The management side of Cisco ASA can be improved so it can be more easily configured and used.Most of the time, when I try to run Java, it is not compatible with ASA's current operating systems.

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This product could be improved with Active directory integration and better handling in IPsec and GRE Tunnels.I use the FortiGate 60D model and realized the 300Mbps bandwidth limitation. Because it is a product that offers many services, I think it could have greater bandwidth capacity.Some features of Fortinet FortiGate are actually fee enabled that are inconvenient for deploying in production. Other issues relate to isolation with Cisco products and your server.I feel that the reporting needs to be improved.I have to say that the initial setup was complex. The deployment took a few days to get set up. Initially, we were using an IPVanish. We switched to this tool since we thought it would be easier. But it turns out it wasn't easier to set up and run.The main aspect of FortiGate that could be improved is load balancing. Our management team does not want to buy another appliance for only load balancing.One issue that I have had is that sometimes I need to monitor the traffic, so I need to filter it according to the user and which user is using it the most. I experience a bottleneck most of the time, particularly at the peak time when the number of contracts and users are at maximum.Compared to some other products, the DLP is not at par for the moment.

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This product needs improvements with respect to reporting and auditing.Adjustment in the interfaces: I had to adjust those interfaces manually and of course that is a great feature that you can restore it but it is immediately also one point for improvement. If you don't have to adjust, if it's just stamped and it works, that's great.pfSense is not user-friendly. I hope to have something to make the interfaces more user-friendly.I would like to see SD1 integration into the software. That would be fantastic.It needs better parsing of logs. At the moment, you have to use an external server for this if you want a deeper analysis.I would like to see multiple DNS servers running on individual interfaces.They need to take care of a few issues with the GUI. Occasionally, they don't update the configurations properly. I would also like them to firm up the VPN aspect of the software a bit and provide better monitoring software.When a carrier that supports a VPN or IPsec tunnel bounces, the recovery time can take a few minutes. Reducing that time would be greatly appreciated in future releases.

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Pricing and Cost Advice
Watch out for hidden licensing and incredibly high annual maintenance costs.We paid about $7,000 for the Cisco firewall, plus another small Cisco router and the lead switch. It was under the combined license. It's a final agreement.The cost is a big factor for us. This is why we are using it only in our restricted area. They are very much higher than their competitors in the market.Licensing is expensive compared to other solutions.Pricing is high, but it is essentially a corporate decision.The cost is a bit high compared to other solutions in the market.Cisco recently has become very expensive.The cost is a bit higher than other competitive solutions on the market.

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Before choosing a piece of equipment you have to take into account the cost-benefit offered by each one. Sometimes it is not worth paying a very cheap price to have a minimum level of security.Each feature costs money, so it is important to study your needs.I would say that all things considered, the pricing is pretty good.Fortinet is reasonable in pricing and licensing. Overall, FortiGate is affordable. The licensing fee can be a little high, depending on the budget for your project.Our licensing costs are on a yearly basis.Compared to Palo Alto, which we have used in the past, pricing and licensing are okay.Setup cost may be not so low, as you expect, because it depends on different factors, but TCO for 5 years may pleasantly surprise you.The initial setup is super straight forward and as far as the licensing goes for the small product that we have, the pricing was pretty competitive. It wasn't as simple and as cheap as a SonicWall but for the service we would get it was a good price.

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All costs are low compared to other solutions. The hardware is stable and cheap.There is no licensing fee except for the enterprise support, if you want it.This solution was about $150,000 cheaper than the closest competitor over a three year period.In comparison to a lot of other solutions, it's very inexpensive.It is a great solution that is economical. It scales so the cost per protected MB is almost free.It is a free solution.It is economical (i.e., free).From Sonic Wall, their price is much higher, because for every feature that you want to add, you have to pay. I can do the same things with pfSense, but everything is included in one price.

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Top Comparisons
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Also Known As
Cisco ASA, Adaptive Security Appliance, ASAFortiGate 60b, FortiGate 60c, FortiGate 80c, FortiGate 50b, FortiGate 200b, FortiGate 110c, FortiGate
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Overview

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.

The FortiGate family of NG firewalls provides proven protection with unmatched performance across the network, from internal segments, to data centers, to cloud environments. FortiGates are available in a large range of sizes and form factors and are key components of the Fortinet Security Fabric, which enables immediate, intelligent defense against known and new threats throughout the entire network.

Providing comprehensive network security solutions for the enterprise, large business and SOHO, pfSense solutions bring together the most advanced technology available to make protecting your network easier than ever before. Our products are built on the most reliable platforms and are engineered to provide the highest levels of performance, stability and confidence.
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Sample Customers
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.Pittsburgh Steelers, LUSH Cosmetics, NASDAQ, Verizon, Arizona State University, Levi Strauss & Co. Whitepaper and case studies hereNerds On Site Inc., RKC Development Inc., Expertech, Fisher's Technology, Ncisive, Consulting, CPURX, Vaughn's Computer House Calls, Imeretech LLC, Digital Crisis, Carolina Digital Phone, Technigogo Technology Services, The Simple Solution, SwiftecITInc, Rocky Mountain Tech Team, Free Range Geeks, Alaska Computer Geeks, Lark Information Technology, Renaissance Systems Inc., Cutting Edge Computers, Caretech LLC, GoVanguard, Network Touch Ltd, P.C. Solutions.Net, Vision Voice and Data Systems LLC, Montgomery Technologies, Techforce, Concero Networks, ASONInc, CPS Electronics and Consulting, Darkwire.net LLC, IT Specialists, MBS-Net Inc., VOICE1 LLC, Advantage Networking Inc., Powerhouse Systems, Doxa Multimedia Inc., Pro Computer Service, Virtual IT Services, A&J Computers Inc., Envision IT LLC, CommunicaONE Inc., Bone Computer Inc., Amax Engineering Corporation, QPG Ltd. Co., IT 101 Inc., Perfect Cloud Solutions, Applied Technology Group Inc., The Digital Sun Group LLC, Firespring
Top Industries
REVIEWERS
Financial Services Firm20%
Manufacturing Company13%
Comms Service Provider11%
University7%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider21%
Financial Services Firm17%
Manufacturing Company11%
Transportation Company8%
REVIEWERS
Comms Service Provider12%
Financial Services Firm12%
Healthcare Company9%
Real Estate/Law Firm9%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Cloud Provider19%
Comms Service Provider9%
Writing And Editing Position9%
Financial Services Firm8%
REVIEWERS
University19%
Comms Service Provider14%
Energy/Utilities Company10%
Construction Company10%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Manufacturing Company15%
Financial Services Firm13%
Comms Service Provider12%
Individual & Family Service11%
Company Size
REVIEWERS
Small Business38%
Midsize Enterprise28%
Large Enterprise35%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business41%
Midsize Enterprise27%
Large Enterprise32%
REVIEWERS
Small Business51%
Midsize Enterprise24%
Large Enterprise25%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business53%
Midsize Enterprise33%
Large Enterprise14%
REVIEWERS
Small Business67%
Midsize Enterprise19%
Large Enterprise13%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business45%
Midsize Enterprise44%
Large Enterprise11%
Find out what your peers are saying about Fortinet FortiGate vs. pfSense and other solutions. Updated: May 2019.
339,526 professionals have used our research since 2012.
We monitor all Firewalls reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.

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