Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series vs. SonicWall NSA Series

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Score 9.4 out of 10
N/A
Palo Alto next-generation firewalls classify all traffic, including encrypted and internal traffic, based on application, application function, user and content. Users can create security policies to enable only authorized users to run sanctioned applications.N/A
SonicWall NSA Series
Score 8.8 out of 10
N/A
The SonicWall NSA Series is the company's mid-range next generation firewall (NGFW).N/A
Pricing
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
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
Community Pulse
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
Considered Both Products
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Chose Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
I did not originally choose Palo Alto as our core firewall appliance. It has already been purchased when I came on board. However, I did recently choose to purchase new Palo Alto firewalls to replaced our older models. I have had experience working with Cisco ASAs and …
SonicWall NSA Series
Chose SonicWall NSA Series
SonicWall NSA series interface is way better than either Watchguard or Checkpoint. Even though people want to dismiss SonicWall NSA, they have the advanced features of its competitors, but with the easy interface. With all things being equal, I consider Palo Alto Networks to be …
Top Pros
Top Cons
Features
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
Firewall
Comparison of Firewall features of Product A and Product B
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
9.4
21 Ratings
10% above category average
SonicWall NSA Series
7.1
4 Ratings
18% below category average
Identification Technologies9.921 Ratings5.04 Ratings
Visualization Tools9.021 Ratings8.04 Ratings
Content Inspection9.921 Ratings6.03 Ratings
Policy-based Controls10.021 Ratings8.04 Ratings
Active Directory and LDAP9.920 Ratings4.03 Ratings
Firewall Management Console10.021 Ratings9.04 Ratings
Reporting and Logging7.621 Ratings7.04 Ratings
VPN8.321 Ratings9.04 Ratings
High Availability10.020 Ratings7.04 Ratings
Stateful Inspection10.020 Ratings8.03 Ratings
Proxy Server8.810 Ratings00 Ratings
Best Alternatives
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
Small Businesses
pfSense
pfSense
Score 9.2 out of 10
pfSense
pfSense
Score 9.2 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
pfSense
pfSense
Score 9.2 out of 10
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Score 9.4 out of 10
Enterprises
Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) Software
Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) Software
Score 9.0 out of 10
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Score 9.4 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
Likelihood to Recommend
9.5
(37 ratings)
8.0
(4 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
10.0
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Usability
10.0
(2 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Support Rating
8.4
(9 ratings)
9.0
(2 ratings)
User Testimonials
Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewalls - PA SeriesSonicWall NSA Series
Likelihood to Recommend
Palo Alto Networks
Palo Alto firewall only affords by Large level infrastructure having a budget for Security Prospect. I will recommend it for the Card information industry & Confidential data solutions. Because it provides a bucket of security features that are not easily vulnerable.
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SonicWall
SonicWall NSA is best suited for small to mid-size companies or small to medium K-12 school districts. It's less appropriate for larger businesses and schools. This is due to their ease of use and well-rounded feature set but lacks in advanced configuration, performance, and reliability.
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Pros
Palo Alto Networks
  • The PA handles VPN connectivity without missing a beat. We have multiple VPN tunnels in use for redundancy to cloud-based services.
  • The PA has great functionality in supporting failover internet connections, again with the ability to have multiple paths out to our cloud-based services.
  • The PA is updated on the regular with various security updates, we are not concerned with the firewall's ability to see what packets are really flowing across the network. Being able to see beyond just IP and port requests lets you know things are locked down better than traditional firewalls.
  • It is a great overall kit, with URL filtering and other services that fill in the gaps between other solutions without breaking the bank.
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SonicWall
  • Relatively inexpensive compared to some of the higher-end products, like Palo Alto Networks.
  • Easy to set up, as the SonicWall NSA interface is consistent across all models.
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Cons
Palo Alto Networks
  • Our specific model is a bit slow and outdated and takes up to 10 minutes to commit a configuration change.
  • Nested security rules would be helpful instead of a linear approach. But rule creation in general is very simple.
  • Documentation gives a very straight forward answer to some items but is very vague in others.
  • Support could be a little better. An issue we had a tech was insistent it was the "other guy" and it ended up being the very latest PAN OS upgrade.
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SonicWall
  • Ideal with smaller businesses. Would have to examine for more complex needs of larger businesses.
  • Scalability might be an issue for super large organizations.
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Likelihood to Renew
Palo Alto Networks
The PA5220s have far exceeded what we have expected out of them. It was a bit of a learning curve coming from another vendor, but everything falls into place now with ease. The capabilities of the solution still surprise us, allowing us to remove other costly hardware and providing a single point of management needed
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SonicWall
No answers on this topic
Usability
Palo Alto Networks
In my opinion, the Palo Alto Firewall is the simplest firewall in terms of management interfaces; though it has more advanced options that apply to more advanced use cases. Configuring basic features on the firewall is nearly self-explanatory; configuring more advanced features can be met with very thorough vendor documentation.
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SonicWall
No answers on this topic
Support Rating
Palo Alto Networks
We've run into a couple undocumented bugs, but that seems to happen with every brand and technology. Any time we've had to engage Palo Alto support they've always been professional, knowledgeable and prompt. In almost all cases we've been able to resolve our issues without having to escalate our tickets.
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SonicWall
Most of the time, calling SonicWall NSA Support, you get an expert who can help resolve your issues. RMAs are pretty easy once they determine there is an issue with the hardware. Support is available 24x7, which makes emergency calls easy. The only downside is the support engineers may have thick accents; however, their expertise more than makes up for any language barriers.
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Alternatives Considered
Palo Alto Networks
No one can say any other companies in this time is better than Palo Alto Networks Next-Generatoin Firewalls. Palo Alto offers very advanced features which protect you[r] organization. Advanced malware protection, anti spam, lots of other threats.
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SonicWall
We compared the FortiGate to Sonicwall and continued with Sonicwall as we were a mid-size school where the Sonicwall was performing adequately, and the learning curve was steep to switch platforms. The Sonicwall offered everything the FortiGate did, and was not as costly, both in the appliance and in licensing.
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Return on Investment
Palo Alto Networks
  • Overall, even though the device is very expensive (both hardware and licensing), the product does produce a decent ROI, given that one (or HA pair) of devices can do so many things, such as anti-virus, anti-malware, URL filtering, SSL decryption, SSL VPN, routing, etc.
  • There will definitely be sticker shock when you're renewal comes up annually (or after 3 years), so be sure to look very carefully at the recurring costs of this product, with respect to licensing and hardware/software maintenance.
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SonicWall
  • Was affordable, allowing for advanced routing and security.
  • Enabled us to build VPNs without purchasing additional services
  • Was simple enough to manage in house without external support.
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