Cisco Ethernet Switches vs Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Mar 24, 2022

We performed a comparison between Cisco Ethernet Switches and Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Most Cisco Ethernet Switches and Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access reviewers felt deployment was easy, especially for those with some knowledge in the area.
  • Features: Users of Cisco Ethernet Switches felt it had excellent security and was extremely reliable, but thought that they could use built-in routers and that they weren’t so user-friendly. Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access users felt it was very user-friendly, and users loved its simplicity, but felt they needed more security features.
  • Pricing: Across the board, users of Cisco Ethernet Switches felt the product was costly. On the other hand, Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access users had mixed reviews on the pricing, with many feeling it was reasonably priced.
  • Service and Support: Cisco Ethernet Switches users had mixed reviews on service and support, though most were satisfied to some degree with the support they received. In contrast, Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access users were all pleased with their support level.
  • ROI: Users of Cisco Ethernet Switches felt the ROI was low, especially compared to other solutions. There were no reviews that mentioned ROI for Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access.

Comparison Results: Based on the parameters we compared, Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access seems to be the superior solution for pricing and service and support. Users gave a similar rating for both products regarding ease of deployment. It’s important to note that, though there were no ROI reviews for Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access, users of Cisco Ethernet Switches were less than pleased with the ROI they saw. In terms of features, users of Cisco Ethernet Switches felt the product wasn’t user-friendly, whereas users of Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access felt the product needed more security features.

To learn more, read our detailed Cisco Ethernet Switches vs. Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access Report (Updated: May 2024).
772,422 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:
"The initial setup is really easy.""The most valuable feature of the solution is the performance of the product.""You can tap into all of the features for your virtual workload environment.""The solution's valuable features are the speed of network transfer, it can transfer four to six gigabits per second.""This solution is overall a high-grade solution compared to others.""The solution can scale.""The solution is compatible with many brands, such as VMware.""The layer-2 switching is very fast."

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"It is a cheap and secure solution. The job switching and security features are better than other solutions.""Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access has good scalability.""The most valuable feature of FortiSwitch is its user-friendly interface, which facilitates easy management and propagation of rules throughout the network.""The solution is very simple, and it's very easily available.""It is easy to set up.""The product is a total solution with the FortiGate, switch, and access point. It is integrated with FortiGate, allowing us to manage all the equipment through it. You can handle everything from a single point.""The most valuable feature is the security switch.""What I really love in FortiSwitch: its usability, the graphical user interface, and the ability to be managed by FortiGate."

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"The enterprise-level switches should have a simpler deployment. They should make it possible for lower-skilled workers to be able to deploy the product.""The solution is expensive.""There are some GUI configuration improvements that they can implement in the future for the product models.""The current state of Cisco Ethernet Switches leaves room for improvement, particularly in regard to central management and security. While they possess the capability to function as owners of Layer Two, they fall short in regard to security awareness. While there are some supplementary products available that can provide additional security measures, such as the deployment of virtual machines, these solutions are external and not integrated within the switch itself. For this reason, Cisco Ethernet switches could benefit from incorporating the same centralized management and security features as other companies, such as Fortinet, offer in their FortiSwitches. By being aware of potential threats such as MAC spoofing and ARP poisoning, the switch can provide a more comprehensive level of security.""In terms of what could be improved, there is the bulk issue that is sometimes experienced with Cisco products we've used.""The solution's reliability should be improved.""If Cisco Ethernet Switches can work both on-prem and in the cloud, it would be an advantage.""Cisco has a lot of propriety protocols compared to other products, such as Arista Networks."

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"The tool should improve its CLI.""The scalability and technical support can be improved.""The product's end-user protection feature needs improvement.""Its cloud features could be better.""When we started using the solution, it was quite complex but then it became easier to use. It takes a while to get used to the interface.""The initial setup is pretty easy; we have built a knowledge base. But there's a learning curve for beginners.""We had experienced downtime. I would like to see it to be improved.""In the next release, I would like to see more outdoor products."

More Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "Not inexpensive. Price will vary widely depending on the chosen product and size of the deployment."
  • "Pricing for this product is high but the cost is worth it if you can afford it."
  • "The pricing is reasonable, and for small business it is acceptable."
  • "The price of this solution is good."
  • "This is an expensive solution, but you are paying for stability."
  • "The last time I bought a 24-port switch, which was a while ago, I paid about five or six thousand Euros. In this part of the world, that's quite expensive for us."
  • "These switches are expensive, but they are an excellent buy and definitely have value for the investment."
  • "We are happy with the pricing from Cisco."
  • More Cisco Ethernet Switches Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The cost appears to be high in comparison to other competing products although with this product you are paying for what you get."
  • "It's affordable and there are no additional costs, just regular support, and license fees."
  • "It's affordable compared to other switching products, like Cisco switches."
  • "You can buy this equipment in a multitude of ways. You can buy just the hardware, or you can buy the hardware and the licenses."
  • "Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access requires a license and the price is expensive."
  • "The price is good."
  • "The price of the solution could improve, it is expensive."
  • "Licensing is billed annually and contracts are either one or three years in length."
  • More Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    772,422 professionals have used our research since 2012.
    Comparison Review
    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:Hello Mesfin It depends on the real scenario, the cisco 2960 is a very good device and they usually have routing functions but there are many different models within the same 2960 line, and on the… more »
    Top Answer:We researched Cisco but ultimately chose Fortinet FortiSwitch Secure Access, mostly because of the price Fortinet FortiSwitch is an ethernet switch solution that provides security and performance… more »
    Top Answer:Our organization ran comparison tests to determine whether Cisco or Juniper Ethernet switches were the better fit for us. We decided to go with Juniper. Juniper ethernet switches are a lesser-known… more »
    Top Answer: With FortiSwitch, you can easily identify who is connected to each port, disable ports as needed, and retrieve configurations from FortiGate when required.
    Top Answer:Renewing the annual licenses for Secure the Switch FortiSwitch can be cumbersome, especially considering the relatively high cost of Fortinet licenses. While the switch itself functions well, the… more »
    out of 34 in Ethernet Switches
    Average Words per Review
    out of 34 in Ethernet Switches
    Average Words per Review
    Also Known As
    Cisco Industrial Ethernet Switches
    Learn More
    Cisco Ethernet Switches scale to meet the needs of networks of all sizes. They are Secure, Reliable and Seamless.

    Fortinet FortiSwitch Secure Access is a secure, high-performance, and easy-to-manage switch. Fortinet FortiSwitch is the best solution for threat-conscious enterprises of all sizes because it is secure, simple, and scalable. Secure Access, which is tightly integrated into the Fortinet Security Fabric via FortiLink, may be handled directly from the FortiGate interface.

    Regardless of how people and devices connect to the network, this single-pane-of-glass administration provides total visibility and control. This makes the Fortinet FortiSwitch perfect for SD-Branch and campus deployments, allowing enterprises to combine their security and network access with applications ranging from desktop to data center aggregation. Fortinet FortiSwitch's Secure Access is the most adaptable security platform with end-to-end protection in the industry.

    Switches for Secure Access: Small to medium-sized businesses, scattered organizations, branch offices, and industrial control systems can all benefit.

    Switches for Data Centers: Ideal for users requiring high-performance 10 GE or 40 GE.

    Fortinet FortiSwitch Secure Access Features

    Fortinet FortiSwitch has many valuable key features. Some of the most useful ones include:

    • Fortinet FortiSwitch Secure Access is designed for various installations, including desktops and wiring closets.
    • Deploy and manage switches using the FortiGate interface, with FortiGate Cloud as a cloud administration option, or manage as a standalone switch using CLI, API, GUI, or the cloud with FortiSwitch Cloud.
    • Switch configuration, management, and troubleshooting are all simplified with a single-pane-of-glass dashboard.
    • Fortinet FortiSwitch Secure Access is ideal for SD-Branch deployments.
    • Secure Access uses FortiGate interfaces to connect with FortiLink. This provides centralized security and access control.
    • Integration of the Security Fabric: Fortinet FortiSwitch's FortiGate management brings Security Fabric features to the Ethernet access layer.
    • Voice, data, and wireless traffic can all be carried over a single network, making it ideal for converged network environments.
    • Non-FortiLink deployments can be supported via the onboard GUI, API, or command line settings.
    • Up to 48 ports in a compact and 1 RU form factor.
    • Depending on the model, up to 300 switches can be stacked per FortiGate.
    • Supports wire-speed switching, as well as store and forward mode.

    Fortinet FortiSwitch Secure Access Benefits

    There are many benefits to implementing Fortinet FortiSwitch. Some of the biggest advantages the solution offers include:

    • You can easily manage all deployments in one interface if your company scales and opens a new office or location.
    • You can ensure that users are authenticated before giving network access.
    • Power over Ethernet makes it simple to set up wireless access points and IP phones.
    • With network segmentation, you can help satisfy data separation compliance.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Fortinet FortiSwitch stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are its stability and its VLAN setup. PeerSpot users take note of the advantages of these features in their reviews:

    Rutul S., CXO at Aariha Enterprise Private Limited, writes of the product, “The most valuable feature is the SD-WAN support. This device is easy to use.” He adds, “Stability-wise, this product is better than others that are on the market.”

    Emil V., System Consultant at I team, notes, “I like the VLAN setup of Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access. Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access has very good scalability.” He adds, “Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access is easy to set up. It only takes minutes to deploy this product, because it is mostly boxes.”

    Sample Customers
    Linz AG
    Black Gold Regional Schools, Amadeus Hospitality, Jefferson County, Chunghwa Telecom, City of Boroondara, Dimension Data
    Top Industries
    Comms Service Provider12%
    Computer Software Company11%
    Educational Organization10%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    Computer Software Company15%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    Computer Software Company27%
    Marketing Services Firm9%
    Manufacturing Company9%
    Comms Service Provider9%
    Computer Software Company15%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Comms Service Provider7%
    Company Size
    Small Business40%
    Midsize Enterprise24%
    Large Enterprise36%
    Small Business27%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise55%
    Small Business72%
    Midsize Enterprise14%
    Large Enterprise14%
    Small Business33%
    Midsize Enterprise21%
    Large Enterprise46%
    Buyer's Guide
    Cisco Ethernet Switches vs. Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access
    May 2024
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Ethernet Switches vs. Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access and other solutions. Updated: May 2024.
    772,422 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco Ethernet Switches is ranked 1st in Ethernet Switches with 128 reviews while Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access is ranked 7th in Ethernet Switches with 41 reviews. Cisco Ethernet Switches is rated 8.6, while Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of Cisco Ethernet Switches writes "It's a solidly stable product from a leader in the field". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access writes "It's a strong product that's easy to manage and costs significantly less than competing solutions ". Cisco Ethernet Switches is most compared with Aruba Switches, D-Link Ethernet Switches, Ubiquiti UniFi Switches, NETGEAR Switches and Juniper EX Series Ethernet Switches, whereas Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access is most compared with Aruba Switches, Meraki MS Switches, Ubiquiti UniFi Switches, NETGEAR Switches and Juniper EX Series Ethernet Switches. See our Cisco Ethernet Switches vs. Fortinet FortiSwitch - Secure Access report.

    See our list of best Ethernet Switches vendors.

    We monitor all Ethernet Switches 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.