WatchGuard for the Win!
August 26, 2020
WatchGuard for the Win!
Score 9 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with WatchGuard Network Security
We use all WatchGuard Network Security firewalls for our main office and all remote offices. We needed a solution that would allow us to connect all current and future offices together as well as with remote employees. WatchGuard accomplishes this by using its branch office VPNs for the offices and IPsec VPNs for our remote employees. We also needed a solution that would let us take advantage of crowd-based intelligence and advanced security services. The Geoblocking of any country that we don't do business with and reputation-enabled defense take care of these needs. As any next-gen firewall solution should have, the WatchGuard firewalls also support A/V scanning of all incoming traffic.
- Easy to set up and get running
- Excellent support
- Easy to manage
- Branch Office VPNs can sometimes be difficult to establish.
- Easier way to capture packets for analysis
- Better filtering in the traffic monitor screen
- Rock solid--never had one fail and I have installed hundreds.
- Very easy to set up and manage; interface is easy to understand.
- The overall value is much better than most.
I was a WatchGuard Network Security partner in past employment, however, since then I purchase them through resellers and install them myself. They are very easy to work with and the few times where I had an issue the support that WatchGuard provided was able to help me out quickly and get the problem solved.
I first started using WatchGuard firewalls about 20 years ago and found them easy to pick up and learn. Since then I have had experience with many other types--Sonicwalls, Palo Altos, and Cisco Meraki, just to name a few--and I still find the that WatchGuard is the easiest to deploy and work with. I still use the management software (vs. the newer web interface) and it's just very easy to find what I need and to make changes.
Implementation is a breeze. As long as you have your networking info handy you can have the base config up and running in just a few minutes. Adding packet filters for any port forwarding is easy and straightforward. Enabling the next-gen features just takes a few clicks, Geoblocking has a nice handy map that you can click on. You have Branch office VPNs and IPsec VPNs setup in less than 30 minutes. Proxy setup and SSL inspection may take a bit more time but the main point is that they can be up and running very quickly.
WatchGuard licensing is straightforward and cost-effective. I always get the 3-year advanced security license and that covers everything. After the 3 years are up, I replace the unit and get another 3-year license. That cycle keeps the hardware fresh and ensures that I am always protected. It saves me a lot of time because I don't have to examine every little feature to see if we are going to use it or might need it. The advanced security just comes with everything. Then, it becomes my choice to use it or not. Also, it covers advanced replacement of the unit (although I have never had to use that) as well as phone and email support, so I am covered from every angle.
I find that WatchGuard really shines against the competition in three areas. First, out of all the firewall appliances I have used, they are the easiest to set up and get running. Second, they perform just as well or better than comparable appliances, and third, they can't be beaten for overall value. What you get for the price is really amazing.
I have personally installed hundreds of WatchGuard Network Security firewalls in businesses ranging from 2- to 3-person operations to hundreds of employees, across many different business types from real-estate to finance to plumbing. For any business that needs a cost-effective solution for a next-gen firewall/remote office connection/integrated wifi, WatchGuard will work wonderfully. If you have hundreds of locations, a cloud-based solution may work a little better than WatchGuard, but they have their drawbacks as well.