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Anonymous User
Tony Scandora
Find out what your peers are saying about Palo Alto Networks VM-Series vs. pfSense and other solutions. Updated: November 2020.
447,439 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
"It is a comprehensive suite and complete package.""The integration and configuration were pretty straightforward.""The transparency of the single UI to ensure security. A product has to be simple so that an administrator can use it.""It provides security for our company and users.""Among the top features are integrated threat defence and the fact that each virtual appliance is separate so you get great granular control.""Its VPN and ASN features are very stable.""The setup was straightforward. I was happy with the configuration and deployment of the solution, as it was quick.""This solution has good security, and it's a good product. You can trust Cisco, and there's support as well, which is really good."

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"It has the ability to create Palo Alto VM-series using software.""It is nice to have a rock solid security platform that we can count on.""AWS has improved our agility to apply firewall rules. It has reduced the amount of time that it takes to apply firewall rules because everything is based in the cloud.""It offers a single pane of glass for all the different types of installations.""It gives us the ease that we are secure. We have set up the proper things that help make our data safe.""It allows us to see all our traffic to properly secure it and only allow what is needed through the firewall.""You already can scale it if you put it in Auto Scaling groups. If you put it in a load balancer, it should already be able to scale.""It provides complete security posture from end-to-end. This has given us better visibility into what our security aspects are."

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"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.""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.""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.""This solution has helped our organization by protecting our network from attacks.""This solution has increased the level of security, given us more control, provided a deep insight into network traffic, and is a great VPN solution.""The scalability is very good, where you can do an HA configuration and then bring in another box, if necessary.""The most valuable features are the VPN and the capture photo.""The solution is very robust."

More pfSense Pros »

Cons
"Cisco ASA should be easier to use. It is a bit tough to navigate and see what is going on.""Even on a smaller scale, people are finding you need HA pairs, and there's no way that the ASA can do that, at least in the virtual version.""The artificial intelligence and machine learning (behavioral based threat detection), which I can this will be coming out in another year, these are what we need now.""The initial setup was complex.""There are always vulnerabilities that come up and there was one in early 2018 but this was patched with software updates.""In terms of next-generation capabilities, Cisco is a little behind, and it is way behind the market leaders.""The phishing emails could be improved.""There may have been one or two incidences of malicious threats."

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"In the next release, I would like to see better integration of multi-factor authentication vendors.""We have run into some issues with scaling and limitations associated with some of the configurations.""We don't know how it will scale once we start putting more load on it.""I would like a way to do everything programmatically, or be able to copy the configs from different prices at different levels.""AWS doesn't integrate well with third-party firewalls.""On the cloud side, they need to come up with more HA solutions to support the multi-region.""The product could provide protection above Layer 3, which gets into the application layer and provides better visibility into those aspects of application security.""It can definitely improve on the performance."

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"I would like to see SD1 integration into the software. That would be fantastic.""pfSense is not user-friendly. I hope to have something to make the interfaces more user-friendly.""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.""This product needs improvements with respect to reporting and auditing.""We would like to see ready-made profiles to cover most users' needs.""I would like to see different graphs available in the reporting.""If a user doesn't have a large amount of experience in Linux systems, they will have problems using this solution. Users need to be highly skilled in troubleshooting competency. Users who do not have such skills will find the product difficult to use.""The solution requires a lot of administration."

More pfSense Cons »

Pricing and Cost Advice
"Purchasing from the AWS Marketplace was easy. It was just point and click.""It is pay-as-you-go, so it much cheaper than buying in the plants.""Our individual release cycle has been quicker because the entire development and testing environment has been automated because of these virtual instances. It has aligned our development workflow. This is where we have seen the ROI increase.""With the Cisco ASA, you do get what you pay for. What would really be awesome is to see Cisco blow out a real cheap version where you can use the sandbox, but leave it step-wise and go to another product relatively easily, like getting you hooked on candy.""We are partners with Cisco. They are always one call away, which is good. They know how to keep their customers happy.""Pricing is high, but it is essentially a corporate decision.""Licensing is expensive compared to other solutions.""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."

More Cisco ASA Firewall Pricing and Cost Advice »

"Some parts of purchasing through AWS Marketplace are good, such as this product was easy to find and launch. Some of the other parts could be clearer in the AWS Marketplace, e.g., how to properly do an annual subscription.""The pricing and licensing are reasonable.""We found purchasing process the product on the AWS Marketplace to be very good.""The price is not bad. They have a yearly renewal fee, and the pricing is exactly where we expect it to be.""Purchasing on the AWS Marketplace was simple, effective, and easy.""AWS is available as a AMI that you can purchase from the AWS Marketplace. Therefore, you need to purchase the licensing, since it is per AMI. Then, you deploy it on a regular EC2. Then, for on-premise, you can use both Palo Alto's software and hardware.""Because the solution was getting deployed on AWS, it was the best place to go and it was available there.""One of the factors for selecting Palo Alto was they had flexible pricing. They had a pay-as-you-go model. Comparable to other products, such as Check Point, the price point was definitely a plus."

More Palo Alto Networks VM-Series Pricing and Cost Advice »

"This solution provides enterprise-level features at a fraction of the cost of an enterprise firewall.""It is an open source firewall.""We are using the open-source version, not the commercial one.""It has almost zero cost, and it is open to us. It runs on a small appliance just for a couple of 100 bucks, and I've never had an appliance burn out on me yet.""It is open source."

More pfSense Pricing and Cost Advice »

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Questions from the Community
Top Answer: They provide DDoS protection and multi-factor authentication. That is a good option as it enables work-from-home… more »
Top Answer: In terms of costs, other solutions are more expensive than Cisco. Palo Alto is more expensive than Cisco.
Top Answer: I have been working with Palo Alto for more than 5 years now and I think I have worked with almost every other firewall… more »
Top Answer: The most valuable features are web control and IPS/IDS.
Top Answer: The price of this solution is very high for some parts of Africa, which makes it a challenge. If it were lowered then it… more »
Top Answer: One other big difference is that pfSense is FreeBSD based while Sophos UTM is linux based. It is also worth having a… more »
Top Answer: Basically the major difference between Sophos XG Firewall and PFsense is that Sophos is a nextgen firewall based on… more »
Popular Comparisons
Compared 8% of the time.
Compared 22% of the time.
Compared 16% of the time.
Compared 16% of the time.
Compared 9% of the time.
Also Known As
Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) Firewall, Cisco ASA NGFW, Cisco ASA, Adaptive Security Appliance, ASA, Cisco Sourcefire Firewalls, Cisco ASAv
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Overview

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.

Learn more about Cisco’s firewall solutions, including virtual appliances for public and private cloud.

The VM-Series is a virtualized form factor of our next-generation firewall that can be deployed in a range of private and public cloud computing environments based on technologies from VMware, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Citrix and KVM.

The VM-Series natively analyzes all traffic in a single pass to determine the application identity, the content within, and the user identity. These core elements of your business can then be used as integral components of your security policy, enabling you to improve your security efficacy through a positive control model and reduce your incident response time though complete visibility into applications across all ports.

In both private and public cloud environments, the VM-Series can be deployed as a perimeter gateway, an IPsec VPN termination point, and a segmentation gateway, protecting your workloads with application enablement and threat prevention policies.

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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Learn more about Cisco ASA Firewall
Learn more about Palo Alto Networks VM-Series
Learn more about pfSense
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.Warren Rogers AssociatesNerds 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 Firm19%
Comms Service Provider12%
Manufacturing Company11%
University6%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider31%
Computer Software Company24%
Media Company5%
Government5%
REVIEWERS
Financial Services Firm18%
Manufacturing Company18%
Healthcare Company9%
Retailer9%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Computer Software Company32%
Comms Service Provider16%
K 12 Educational Company Or School5%
Government5%
REVIEWERS
University16%
Comms Service Provider16%
Energy/Utilities Company8%
Healthcare Company8%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider34%
Computer Software Company18%
Media Company7%
Government5%
Company Size
REVIEWERS
Small Business36%
Midsize Enterprise24%
Large Enterprise40%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business27%
Midsize Enterprise23%
Large Enterprise50%
REVIEWERS
Small Business33%
Midsize Enterprise33%
Large Enterprise33%
REVIEWERS
Small Business70%
Midsize Enterprise16%
Large Enterprise14%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business51%
Midsize Enterprise23%
Large Enterprise26%
Find out what your peers are saying about Palo Alto Networks VM-Series vs. pfSense and other solutions. Updated: November 2020.
447,439 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Palo Alto Networks VM-Series is ranked 9th in Firewalls with 20 reviews while pfSense is ranked 3rd in Firewalls with 17 reviews. Palo Alto Networks VM-Series is rated 8.4, while pfSense is rated 8.8. The top reviewer of Palo Alto Networks VM-Series writes "An excellent solution for the right situations and businesses". On the other hand, 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". Palo Alto Networks VM-Series is most compared with Azure Firewall, Fortinet FortiGate, Fortinet FortiGate-VM and Juniper SRX, whereas pfSense is most compared with OPNsense, Sophos UTM, Fortinet FortiGate, Untangle NG Firewall and Palo Alto Networks WildFire. See our Palo Alto Networks VM-Series vs. pfSense report.

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