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...
- VPN (9)8.888%
- Reporting and Logging (9)8.888%
- Policy-based Controls (9)8.585%
- Content Inspection (9)7.575%
Entry-level set up fee?
- No setup fee
- Free Trial
- Free/Freemium Version
- Premium Consulting / Integration Services
- Tech Details
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 IPv4 and IPv6 support, and intrusion prevention. Within its VPN capabilities, it provides SSL encryption, automatic or custom routing, and multiple tunneling options. pfSense also supports optional clustering and load-balancing, along with proxying and content filtering services. The product can also monitor and report on network traffic.
Sophos XG Firewall
MikroTik Routers and Switches
Ubiquiti Networks UniFi
WatchGuard Network Security
Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) Software
Cisco Meraki MX
Next-Generation Firewalls - PA Series
Cisco Firepower 1000 Series
Cisco ASA 5500-X with FirePOWER Services
Fortinet on IBM Cloud
One of the coolest features of pfSense for someone like me who is learning on the fly is the fact it has a GUI version as well as the CLI version. So you can manage your pfSense instances very easily by using drop-down menus.
I can see this being really useful for small to medium size businesses. The software is very scalable and very flexible. It is also open source so there is not a bunch of licenses to purchase. There are a bunch of addon/packages you can install to add features and they also have "commercial" packages which do cost money but can add features some of the really expensive solutions have.
The support for pfSense is pretty great too - they have a huge online manual you can look things up in and the forums/community support is incredible. I had a question a long while back and I remember having an answer just a couple of hours after I asked it. pfSense runs on FreeBSD - The install was straight forward and once it was installed it is really easy to set up so you don't need to know a bunch of commands. The interface is pretty much "press: 1 to set this up."
I would highly recommend giving this software a try even for personal use. I have been considering trying to make a pfSense based router for my own home use.
We needed something easy to setup and manage on a day to day basis that didn't come with expensive fees or recurring costs to reduce our financial exposure. As time marches on, we've definitely made the best choice in choosing pfSense as it fits our needs extremely well.
I support ~15 network users, which represent something more like 30-40 devices (after notebooks, mobile phones, tablets, etc are accounted for).
pfSense is used as the primary router to our internet connection, as well as our VPN connect endpoint, local DNS resolution, and internet connection failover. Having all of these services bundled in one powerful, well supported, and robust software configuration platform saves a ton of time and makes managing our internal office network very easy.
pfSense supports Multiwan, load balancing both at the WAN level and load distributing level, VPN (IPSEC, OPENVPN), among many other features. I have a client who is using pfSense with Multi-Wan, three separate ipsec tunnels (Datacenter to HQ, HQ to Azure, HQ to another cloud provider). We have basic ACLs rules in place and host a number of servers behind the pfSense. We do not use the load balancing as pfSense is used in Headquarters where we do not host many services that require load balancing behind the router. In anycase for an office it works out well as my client has intermittent ISP issues so the mult-wan comes in really handy.
We've had hardware failures where I simply setup a new pfSense box and copied the configs over and was up and running in no time.
I would highly recommend pfSense for small to medium size businesses, maybe even large but I have yet to test loads at such high scales. I also have not setup pfSense in a production environment with high load so I cannot comment on that part. Overall, I think pfSense is great! I also used pfSense in a VMware environment for test labs and that worked out great fulfilling all my needs as well!