Cisco Meraki SD-WAN vs. pfSense

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Cisco Meraki SD-WAN
Score 8.8 out of 10
N/A
Cisco Meraki SD-WAN is a software-defined WAN offering transport independence, application optimization, intelligent path control, and secure connectivity.N/A
pfSense
Score 9.2 out of 10
N/A
pfSense is a firewall and load management product available through the open source pfSense Community Edition, as well as a the licensed edition, pfSense Plus (formerly known as pfSense Enterprise). The solution provides combined firewall, VPN, and router functionality, and can be deployed through the cloud (AWS or Azure), or on-premises with a Netgate appliance. It as scalable capacities, with functionality for SMBs. As a firewall, pfSense offers Stateful packet inspection, concurrent…
$179
per appliance
Pricing
Cisco Meraki SD-WANpfSense
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
SG-1100
$179
per appliance
SG-2100
$229
per appliance
SG-3100
$399
per appliance
SG-5100
$699
per appliance
XG-7100-DT
$899
per appliance
XG-7100-1U
$999
per appliance
XG-1537
$1,949
per appliance
XG-1541
$2,649
per appliance
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Cisco Meraki SD-WANpfSense
Free Trial
NoNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Features
Cisco Meraki SD-WANpfSense
Firewall
Comparison of Firewall features of Product A and Product B
Cisco Meraki SD-WAN
-
Ratings
pfSense
7.6
11 Ratings
11% below category average
Identification Technologies00 Ratings5.110 Ratings
Visualization Tools00 Ratings7.08 Ratings
Content Inspection00 Ratings4.111 Ratings
Policy-based Controls00 Ratings10.011 Ratings
Active Directory and LDAP00 Ratings7.09 Ratings
Firewall Management Console00 Ratings9.510 Ratings
Reporting and Logging00 Ratings8.011 Ratings
VPN00 Ratings10.011 Ratings
High Availability00 Ratings10.011 Ratings
Stateful Inspection00 Ratings7.011 Ratings
Proxy Server00 Ratings6.111 Ratings
Best Alternatives
Cisco Meraki SD-WANpfSense
Small Businesses

No answers on this topic

Sophos XG Firewall
Sophos XG Firewall
Score 9.6 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Cisco Routers
Cisco Routers
Score 8.4 out of 10
Sophos XG Firewall
Sophos XG Firewall
Score 9.6 out of 10
Enterprises
Cisco Routers
Cisco Routers
Score 8.4 out of 10
Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Score 9.2 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Cisco Meraki SD-WANpfSense
Likelihood to Recommend
8.9
(43 ratings)
9.7
(24 ratings)
Usability
-
(0 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Support Rating
8.1
(2 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Product Scalability
9.2
(41 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
User Testimonials
Cisco Meraki SD-WANpfSense
Likelihood to Recommend
Cisco
At our level, we had to optimize our 3 internet links (MPLS and LTE) with applications like O365, SAP, Microsoft CRM Dynamics and our collaborative work tools like Teams. We also had to ensure that both client workstations and servers could communicate with minimal latency with our Microsoft Intune infrastructure.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
Because pfSense is built around open source software, it is very convenient to be able to deploy in the event of hardware failure. We once had a client with a proprietary router that failed. While the router was under warranty, the expected time for the new router to arrive was about 2 weeks. We decided to implement pfSense for the client as a stop gap and ultimately ended up deploying the full enterprise appliance. Being able to get up and running using commodity hardware was a huge win for the client. We've also had a great amount of success deploying pfSense hardware at apartment complexes. The DNS resolver works great and we've had no issues handling multiple VLANs with various DHCP scopes on it. Finally, we've had clients that require having a failover cluster. Utilizing the built in CARP capabilities, we've been able to provide a very robust failover system that requires little maintenance and no downtime in the event of equipment failure.
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Pros
Cisco
  • Meraki has been beautifully done for people who are actually very lean on the IT infrastructure as in resources wise. So Meraki is a very good solution to give them the simplicity on a single glass plan where they can actually have visibility over all their networks on a single glass plane by a click of button, they could actually see what's happening. They could actually do troubleshooting on the fly, including packet capture, which is such a smooth feature. Usually myself including I've been have an engineering background, all my ears packet capture, I've never seen that smooth and easy to operate that you can actually have a high level understanding or deep level depending on how much you want to go in with the click of a button. That's so beautiful. I mean everything for me Meraki is point of kind of a go ahead for everyone.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
  • Easy to use. Good user interface design! Easy to understand and easy to set up.
  • Lower hardware requirement. 3 years ago, we used an old PC to run it. Now, we have changed to a router device with Celeron CPU and 8GB RAM. It runs smoothly with a 1000G commercial broadband.
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Cons
Cisco
  • The platform itself is very feature-rich. One of the difficulties we find is that to do things, for example, in terms of monitoring and obtaining data, it's not consistent. There are multiple interfaces to get them, but you can't get the same data through all interfaces. So you end up having to try to find either the least common denominator or we have to build our own code that then mines through all the interfaces and that becomes very problematic.
  • The other problem we've found is that there are issues where the same amount of expected software quality isn't really there in all releases. Cisco breaks things out by like shorter or long-lived release trains. And the long-lived release trains tend to have good quality by the time you get to the second or third release within it. But then those are skips. There are like 12, 18 months skips in between those. So if you start releasing features on versions in between there practically to be safe, you have to wait until you know much later. So to be able to see new future capabilities as they come out and deploy those readily needs to improve, it needs to be much faster.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
  • I did kind of mention a Con in the Pro section with OpenVPN.
  • When I create a config for an employee other employees are able to login to that config.
  • I could be doing something wrong when I am making it - I am not afraid to admit that as I am pretty new to all of this, but it seems like it builds a key and I would think the key would be unique in some way to each employee, but I could be wrong.
  • I actually do not have a lot of Con's for this software - I did not get to set this up on our work network so I am not sure of any downfalls when installing.
  • I installed this on my personal machine in a Hyper-V environment to get a feel for it before I started working on it at work and it seemed pretty smooth. I didn't run into any issues.
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Usability
Cisco
No answers on this topic
Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
The interface is simple, has sane defaults, and is consistent throughout.
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Support Rating
Cisco
Fast and efficient. The only issue currently is that the support is only overseas support and not in South Africa, which causes delays in resolution for some cases. Escalating issues is quite simple and the opening of new cases from the dashboard is easy. I have never had a support issue that could not be resolved.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
No answers on this topic
Alternatives Considered
Cisco
The Sonic wall and Cisco ASA required a lot of trial and error to get up and running. Rules and configurations were difficult to setup and were not intuative. Meraki is very ituative.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
While you can get the performance out of other products, pfSense offers the unique ability to put other services on the same device. Products such as Untagle's NG Firewall and SonicWall's TZ series offer cost effective options for firewall and VPN services, having incoming load balancing and connection proxies on the same device as the firewall offers extremely easy configuration and day to day management of network services
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Scalability
Cisco
Once your template is set up Meraki is easy to scale. Even creating the template is easy and I was able to learn enough in 4 hours to build, test, and deploy templates for our locations. Best part is you can stage your deployment by adding a unit to a template even before taking it out of the box.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
No answers on this topic
Return on Investment
Cisco
  • It was mostly around logs. I mean I understand because the aim is to provide the simplified solution to the people as an end user, be it an IT manager or the oil team. So I understand where you don't have lots of tools assigned where you can actually take help from the track. But in terms of having that logging information, I think that's where it's been a bit of a kind of journey where struggling, we have been struggling there.
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Netgate (Rubicon Communications, LLC)
  • Using pfSense has allowed us to build a professional network in our small office without needing a lot of proprietary hardware, saving thousands of dollars in IT infrastructure investment.
  • The cost for using pfSense is free, so it's a great option for those who don't have a large IT budget
  • pfSense utilizes all of the industry standard services to provide all of it's functionality, so support for service-level issues is readily available
  • Because of how much work has been put into pfSense to make it rock solid and reliable, we're able to support our network with minimal IT staffing, saving us thousands of dollars/year in personnel alone.
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