Cisco DNA Center vs Fortinet FortiManager comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between Cisco DNA Center and Fortinet FortiManager based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out in this report how the two Network Management Applications solutions compare in terms of features, pricing, service and support, easy of deployment, and ROI.
To learn more, read our detailed Cisco DNA Center vs. Fortinet FortiManager Report (Updated: November 2023).
746,635 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
"Cisco DNA Center provides operational support, compliance support, security vulnerability detection, and automatic scheduling.""It does a lot of things automatically, and that's the big thing with it. They're making the software so that you don't need to be as knowledgeable as me on the switching and routing side to get your work done. If you want, you can have DNA troubleshoot your problem for you and give you solutions or fix it itself, if it was something that's just a configuration issue.""DNA Center is scalable.""It enables monitoring of various components such as access points, switch cards, and other elements within the company's solutions.""The product gives a consolidated view.""The most valuable features were the monitoring, maintenance, and configuration.""It is a stable solution.""Application Assurance works very well."

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"FortiManager offers a full zero-touch provisioning feature that allows us to create a template of our devices and onboard them remotely without visiting the site.""The main benefit of Fortinet FortiManager is the ability to control all the devices from a central location, view their statuses, and manage their configurations and updates from a single management console.""The capability of centralized management is valuable. We can configure all firewall boxes with the same configuration.""It is easy to set up the solution.""The SD-WAN deployment environment, and the SD-WAN templates are particularly useful. Managing the solution is very intuitive. The initial setup of the solution was very straightforward.""It is stable.""It's a scalable product.""It can scale well."

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"The solution's integration feature can be better.""The solution's technical support is an area with which my company's clients have a problem. Cisco doesn't provide good technical support unless a user has a big account that Cisco wants to retain.""The product has many features that do not work properly.""They should include UTM features in the product.""There are some software problems from version to version. It takes a long time for DNA Center to recognize the video and control access devices.""There should be an option for automation of template deployment by using the stored data. It is not easy to save configuration information for lots of devices without using other tools. There should be a tighter, better repository of information that can be merged with the templates.""The product doesn’t have good monitoring capabilities.""The solution’s security side could be improved."

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"The solution has some bugs.""I didn't like the connectivity with FortiManager and FortiSwitch, which was buggy and annoying and had fewer features.""The compatibility with legacy products should be better. It would also be nice if the software could manage other devices from Fortinet and third parties.""The SD-WAN solution is difficult to manage on FortiManager because you need to share some configurations on the firewall side. Sometimes you lose all connectivity with the firewall, so it is challenging to apply the default configuration to the SD-WAN solution.""FortiManager could be more user-friendly.""There are a lot of bugs that need to be fixed, for example, the ZTP.""FortiManager should improve the integration with third-party platforms.""The fabric for integrations or connections could be improved."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "The licensing cost for Cisco DNA Center is not more than that of other solutions."
  • "Licensing for Cisco DNA Center is a little bit expensive, just like any Cisco solution. Its cost could still be improved."
  • "We have a three-year license with them."
  • "Cisco DNA Center is a licensed product with multiple levels of licensing available such as basic, advanced, and essential. I don't have the exact figure, but Cisco DNA Center is costly. For example, the box has information about the essential license and costs a considerable amount of money. You need to pay extra to use advanced features in Cisco DNA Center. My company sees Cisco DNA Center as a solution that's worth the money, which is why it invested in the solution. If you want centralized management for your network, especially when upgrading it, Cisco DNA Center is perfect, but it's more suitable for a large-scale rather than a small-scale network."
  • "The price could be better. It's a very expensive tool."
  • "It is an expensive solution."
  • "The price of the solution is expensive. The hardware is licensed on the device, but the hardware on the server is expensive."
  • "Affordability is a problem because it's created for large enterprises only. So, some customers, even if their engineers want the solution, might have problems with budget limitations."
  • More Cisco DNA Center Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "This is an affordable solution, and its licensing model is based on the number of devices."
  • "For us, it is a little bit expensive."
  • "For the licensing fee, we paid around 10,000 to 15,000 euros."
  • "The solution requires you to have a license for every device, as well as for any advanced features being used, which makes it costly for high-volume users. However, for a large-scale environment with a lot of customers we have found it to be a worthwhile investment."
  • "The price point is very good."
  • "FortiManager is reasonably priced - I pay around US$40,0000 per year, which covers fifty locations."
  • "The pricing is based on a licensing model by feature."
  • "Pricing could improve a little bit so I rate it a seven out of ten."
  • More Fortinet FortiManager Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:The most valuable feature of Cisco DNA Center is the AI (Artificial Intelligence) that provides us with valuable information.
    Top Answer:The partnership price is notably high, but it ultimately depends on the chosen business model.
    Top Answer:Cisco DNA Center is costly for Ukrainian customers. The functionality and connections are excellent. If the price decreases, it should become more accessible.
    Top Answer:The solution is competitive. It's neither cheap nor expensive. The solution can be paid annually. If you use a cloud, you will have to pay for subscription charges.
    Top Answer:I cannot comment on what needs to be improved, although there are always potential areas for improvement in every product. The Fortinet team is always very responsive and resolves issues quickly. For… more »
    Average Words per Review
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    Also Known As
    DNA Center
    Learn More

    Cisco DNA Center is a robust, intuitive network controller and management platform that provides secure, safe access to applications and networks. Cisco DNA Center allows you to take control of your network to increase the effectiveness of your Cisco products, lower your TCO, and improve your ROI.

    Your organization’s network is an integral part of your business’s success. In today’s aggressive marketplace, organizations need a network management system in place that can effectively automate deployments and connectivity, and manage the health of their infrastructure. Additionally, management systems also need to be able to strategically maintain the quality and safety of their systems so that the organization can direct valuable IT resources to concentrate on projects that can improve the overall effectiveness of the organization. An intent-based network controller such as Cisco DNA center will help your organization do that.

    Cisco DNA Center is a group of software solutions that will automate all your virtual devices, provide secure administration of your network, and ensure the best network experience for all users on the network. Cisco DNA Center does away with all the tedious, mundane tasks and simplifies workflow device installations, upgrading from hours to minutes using Plug-and-Play (PnP) and Software Image Management (SWIM).

    Cisco DNA Center’s intuitive, robust assurance feature makes every network point a sensor, continually communicating user connectivity and application performance in real time. This ensures all issues are resolved immediately.

    Cisco DNA Center integrates with Cisco security solutions, Cisco Umbrella, and Cisco Secure Network Analytics, which provide an extra level of extensive security protection against threats. The entire solution can be easily managed from one single dashboard, making Cisco DNA Center a very robust, secure, complete solution.

    Benefits of Cisco DNA Center

    • Cost-effectiveness: Policy automation and remediation minimizes the amount of time IT staff spend managing mundane network tasks.
    • Improved performance: AI/ML automation improves workflow and overall user experience. A clean, crisp dashboard makes management easy.
    • Enhance your network: Cisco DNA Center delivers the latest, most intuitive cloud services and applications to optimize your network.

    • Improved security: Cisco DNA Center utilizes the most robust zero-trust policies based on overall endpoint user behavior to keep networks secure.

    Features of Cisco DNA Center

    • Easy automation: Cisco DNA Center offers zero-touch device deployment, automated quality of service (QoS), automated device discovery, and drag-and-drop policy creation.

    • Clear analytics: Cisco DNA Center offers more than 150 workable insights, such as guided remediation, endpoint tracking, context-guided analytics, and more.

    • Simplified management: Users have complete control from a user-friendly single dashboard that provides a completely transparent view of the network, devices, applications, and services. Additionally, there is integration with Cisco Prime or APIC-EM for the importation of maps or other configurations as needed.

    • Security: Cisco DNA Center provides a highly secure segmentation, encrypted traffic analytics, and robust threat detection and response, and also uses Stealthwatch and ISE integration.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Mostafa G., Network and Data Center Supervisor at a hospitality company, says, “Since using the solution, three or four people can do what 10 people could previously. It has been a benefit to the organization. We have many people from the team who manage a lot of devices. By using Cisco DNA Center, it has taken some of that burden away, we are impressed with it.”

    Nihar K., Managing Director at Allot Group, relates, “In day-to-day operations, especially post-pandemic, the majority of our customers have to work from anywhere. It's not just work from home, it's work from anywhere. Due to this work from anywhere concept, the traditional silos of a network for the data center architecture, managing everything from anywhere, and having that single integrated dashboard for each and every activity while being able to correlate those activities in line with a business objective, has been very well addressed by Cisco DNA. The solution's most valuable aspect is its simplicity and the complete automation of the network workflow, which we can use that correlate with the business. It's not only limited to STXs or a data center. It completes everything, which really helps us.

    Networks are constantly evolving due to threats, organizational growth, or new regulatory/business requirements. Traditional management products focus on mitigating company-wide threats through firewall policies, firmware updates, and keeping content security current. FortiManager offers the features to contain threats as well as providing flexibility to evolve along with your ever-changing network.

    Learn more about Cisco DNA Center
    Learn more about Fortinet FortiManager
    Sample Customers
    Information Not Available
    Black Gold Regional Schools, Amadeus Hospitality, Jefferson County, Chunghwa Telecom, City of Boroondara, Dimension Data
    Top Industries
    Comms Service Provider20%
    Financial Services Firm15%
    Hospitality Company10%
    Computer Software Company19%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Healthcare Company6%
    Computer Software Company30%
    Comms Service Provider27%
    Manufacturing Company13%
    Transportation Company7%
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider7%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    Company Size
    Small Business22%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise61%
    Small Business18%
    Midsize Enterprise12%
    Large Enterprise70%
    Small Business44%
    Midsize Enterprise28%
    Large Enterprise28%
    Small Business28%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise54%
    Buyer's Guide
    Cisco DNA Center vs. Fortinet FortiManager
    November 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco DNA Center vs. Fortinet FortiManager and other solutions. Updated: November 2023.
    746,635 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco DNA Center is ranked 1st in Network Management Applications with 27 reviews while Fortinet FortiManager is ranked 3rd in Network Management Applications with 42 reviews. Cisco DNA Center is rated 7.8, while Fortinet FortiManager is rated 8.0. The top reviewer of Cisco DNA Center writes "Allows multiple switch port configurations and traffic segregation into multiple fabrics, but there's a delay in log replication, and reporting needs more customization options". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Fortinet FortiManager writes "Easy to set up, quick response to threats, and collaborates well with other Fortinet products". Cisco DNA Center is most compared with Cisco Prime, SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager, Aruba Airwave, Huawei eSight and Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform, whereas Fortinet FortiManager is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate Cloud, Fortinet FortiOS, Zabbix, SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager and AlgoSec. See our Cisco DNA Center vs. Fortinet FortiManager report.

    See our list of best Network Management Applications vendors.

    We monitor all Network Management Applications reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.