Cisco IOS Security vs OPNsense comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between Cisco IOS Security and OPNsense based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out in this report how the two Firewalls solutions compare in terms of features, pricing, service and support, easy of deployment, and ROI.
To learn more, read our detailed Cisco IOS Security vs. OPNsense Report (Updated: November 2022).
656,474 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:
Pros
"To be honest, all of the features that are provided, all the other vendor will also have. One feature we did find valuable was the CLI, it is more accurate. Additionally, I was happy with the customization, dashboards, access lists and interface.""Firepower NGFW has improved my organization in several ways. Before, we were trying to stamp out security threats and issues, it was a one-off type of way to attack it. I spent a lot of manpower trying to track down the individual issues or flare-ups that we would see. With Cisco's Firepower Management, we're able to have that push up to basically one monitor and one UI and be able to track that and stop threats immediately. It also gives us a little more granularity on what those threats might be.""You do not have to do everything through a command line which makes it a lot easier to apply rules.""Netting is one of the best features. We can modify it in different ways. Site-to-site VPN is also an awesome feature of Cisco ASA. The biggest advantage of Cisco products is technical support. They provide the best technical support.""The whole firewall functionality, including firewall policies and IPS policies, is valuable. It has all kinds of functionalities. It has IPS, VPN, and other features. They are doing quite a lot of stuff with their devices.""The most valuable feature we have found to be the VPN because we use it often.""Feature-wise, we mostly use IPS because it is a security requirement to protect against attacks from outside and inside. This is where IPS helps us out a bunch.""I have experience with URL filtering, and it is very good for URL filtering. You can filter URLs based on the categories, and it does a good job. It can also do deep packet inspection."

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"The technical is excellent.""Cisco products are very secure and integrate easily with other devices.""In Pakistan, we only use Cisco because they have good local support infrastructure. Huawei and Fortinet don't offer direct support in Pakistan.""The most valuable features of Cisco IOS Security are the plenty of functionality it provides, many people are IT certified the usage, and the user interface is good.""One of the valuable features of the solution is its flexibility and it performs great.""One of the main features is that the hardware is extremely reliable.""The product is easy to use.""The security is very good."

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"OPNsense is easy to scale when running on the hardware.""The initial implementation process is simple.""I have found the solution has some great features overall, such as guest access capabilities, dashboards, and ease of use. There is plenty of documentation and support and it has the plugins that I needed.""We have found pretty much all the features of the solution to be valuable.""The most valuable features are reporting, the Sensei plugin, and firewall capabilities.""OPNsense could improve by making the configuration more web-based rather than shell or command-line-based.""The technical support is very good.""The IDS and IPS features are valuable. From the usability perspective, there is a lot of good documentation. As IT professionals, we found it very easy to configure the firewall. It was easy to configure and use."

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Cons
"The solution has not had any layer upgrades. It does not have layer five and upwards, it only has up to layer four. This has caused some problems for us.""The performance should be improved.""Cisco is still catching up with its Firepower Next-Generation firewalls.""Nowadays, nobody is in the office, so I need to figure out how to put the firewall outside. If I could have a centralized firewall that also receives information from external locations, like peoples' home offices, that would help us consolidate everything into one appliance.""Maybe the dashboard could be a bit better.""I would like to see improvement when you create policies on Snort 3 IPS on Cisco Firepower. On Snort 2, it was more like a UI page where you had some multiple choices where you could tweak your config. On Snort 3, the idea is more to build some rules on the text file or JSON file, then push it. So, I would like to see a lot of improvements here.""I think they need to review their whole UI because it feels like it was created by a whole bunch of different teams of developers who didn't fully talk to each other. The net policy screen is just a mess. It should look like the firewall policy screen, and they should both act the same, but they don't. I feel like it's two different buildings or programming, who don't talk to each other, and that really annoys me.""I would like to see them add more next-generation features so that you don't need a lot of appliances to do just one task. It should be a single solution."

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"Cisco IOS Security could improve its security features. There are competitors that have some additional security features, such as Fortinet FortiGate. Additionally, there should be better synchronization with Cisco IOS Security and other vendors, and improved AI features would be beneficial.""While Cisco IOS Security is stable and scalable, I would like to see it improved to be even better.""An area for improvement in Cisco IOS Security is the performance because it's not as stable sometimes. There's also some latency in the solution, which could be improved. Cisco IOS Security integrates with other solutions, but you'll encounter many errors after integration, so this is another area for improvement. I'd like to see enhanced performance and a simplified setup in the next version of Cisco IOS Security.""It takes too much time to deploy a policy to FMC. It takes around eight minutes. You can't afford any downtime when you're changing policies.""There could be a bit more functions on offer that could make it easier to use.""Sometimes I find it difficult to manage. Some configurations are difficult for new engineers, for example.""The configuration and reporting interfaces need a lot of improvement. It needs to be more accessible forsolide without a strong technical background. If you had a simplified dashboard, the lower-level techs could manage the solution and provide services. Cisco IOS Security requires someone who is highly trained to operate it.""I think they should bring back remote VPN for users."

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"We did not like the fact that you have to configure everything with the graphic user interface. We have used other firewalls, such as FortiGate, that you can configure via code. OPNsense is not easy to integrate. When you are deploying via GitHub or another source repository, this is not possible. That's one thing we didn't like much.""The solution could be more secure.""I would like to see better SD-WAN performance.""The support for OPNsense is good because we have documents available on the internet. The support could improve a little.""Its interface should be a little bit better.""While they do have paid options that actually gives better features, for most of the clients, if they tend to take a paid option will instead opt for Fortinet.""The interface isn't so friendly user. But we have some technicians here who are quite confident with this tool. OPNSense could maybe add sets of rules so it's simpler to manage different groups with particular needs.""The IPS solution could be more reliable."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "If we compare it with FortiGate and the co-existing ASA, FortiGate is better in price."
  • "They seem to be at the top end in terms of pricing, but they are worth the price. They are probably a little bit lower than Palo Alto. If the customers are relying on Cisco products and they are thinking more in terms of scaling to another layer in a year, it is pretty much in a good price range."
  • "We're using the smart license for this firewall. The models that we have require licensing for remote access."
  • "There are licensing costs."
  • "I just bought it off the shelf, and I'm using it with my previous one, so I have not spent that much."
  • "The price is fair. It's not the cheapest, but it's not bad."
  • "For me, personally, as an individual, Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is expensive."
  • "The product is very expensive."
  • More Cisco Secure Firewall Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "It is necessary to pay for a license in order to use the solution. It is on a yearly basis and the price is high."
  • "Palo Alto networks are more expensive than this solution and this is why you will see more products like this one in Mexico."
  • "The price of the solution should be cheaper, and the license is purchase annually."
  • "They have smart licenses that can be provided for one year, two years, three years, five years, and seven years. Alternatively, they have perpetual licenses available."
  • "Cisco IOS Security price could be reduced, it is more expensive than many of the other solutions, such as Sophos and Fortinet FortiGate."
  • "Cisco IOS Security is not very expensive, and pricing depends on where you live. It's affordable for both individuals and institutions. On a scale from one to five, I would give Cisco's pricing a four."
  • "The cost may be around $5,000 to $10,000 a year. If you want support you have to pay at least this price."
  • "The pricing for Cisco IOS Security is reasonable compared to other Cisco products."
  • More Cisco IOS Security Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "OPNsense is an open-source solution and it is free to use."
  • "The solution is not expensive."
  • "As an appliance, it's in the medium price range."
  • "Its pricing is unbeatable in comparison to other firewalls. You can have a small instance that could be €80 a month with the hardware underneath. Azure Firewall and FortiGate are out of the question at this price. If you are on a public cloud, you need the underlying infrastructure. Other than that, there is no additional cost. If you have it on-prem, you have to buy the server or the appliance. The hardware cost is replaced with the infrastructure cost in the cloud. You also have costs for the public IPs and underlying VMs, but that's not related to OPNsense. It would be the same for a FortiGate deployment on Azure. You need a FortiGate license, and you need the underlying infrastructure that scales up depending on your needs."
  • "It is open source and free."
  • "The price of OPNsense is good."
  • More OPNsense Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer: When you compare these firewalls you can identify them with different features, advantages, practices and… more »
    Top Answer:One of our favorite things about Fortinet Fortigate is that you can deploy on the cloud or on premises. Fortinet… more »
    Top Answer:It is easy to integrate Cisco ASA with other Cisco products and also other NAC solutions. When you understand the Cisco… more »
    Top Answer:One of the main features is that the hardware is extremely reliable.
    Top Answer:Palo Alto networks are more expensive than this solution and this is why you will see more products like this one in… more »
    Top Answer:I think they should bring back remote VPN for users. However, I understand the attempt is to have these functions inside… more »
    Top Answer:Two of the most common and well recognized firewalls, PfSense and OPNsense both support site-to-site IPsec VPN and… more »
    Top Answer:OPNsense could improve by making the configuration more web-based rather than shell or command-line-based.
    Top Answer:The price of OPNsense is good. I rate the price of OPNsense a five out of five.
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Cisco ASA Firewall, Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) Firewall, Cisco ASA NGFW, Cisco ASA, Adaptive Security Appliance, ASA, Cisco Sourcefire Firewalls, Cisco ASAv, Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall
    IOS Security
    Learn More
    OPNsense
    Video Not Available
    Overview

    The Cisco Secure Firewall portfolio delivers greater protections for your network against an increasingly evolving and complex set of threats. With Cisco, you’re investing in a foundation for security that is both agile and integrated- leading to the strongest security posture available today and tomorrow.

      From your data center, branch offices, cloud environments, and everywhere in between, you can leverage the power of Cisco to turn your existing network infrastructure into an extension of your firewall solution, resulting in world class security controls everywhere you need them.

      Investing in a Secure Firewall appliance today gives you robust protections against even the most sophisticated threats without compromising performance when inspecting encrypted traffic. Further, integrations with other Cisco and 3rd party solutions provides you with a broad and deep portfolio of security products, all working together to correlate previously disconnected events, eliminate noise, and stop threats faster.

      Cisco IOS Software delivers a sophisticated set of security capabilities for a comprehensive, layered security approach throughout your network infrastructure. Cisco IOS security technologies help to defend critical business processes against attack and disruption, protect privacy, and support policy and regulatory compliance controls.

      OPNsense is a user-friendly, fast-track, open-source FreeBSD-based firewall and routing platform. This software offers features that are generally available from costly commercial firewalls, with the added benefit of open and verifiable sources. The firewall provides users, developers, and organizations with an advantageous environment through transparency. The development of this project is driven by a strong focus on security and code quality.

      The solution offers a variety of components, such as:

      • Weekly security updates. These updates provide the user with the ability to reach new emerging threats in a timely manner through small increments.

      • Two major releases every year. These yearly releases are on a fixed release cycle and provide organizations with the ability to plan ahead of an upcoming upgrade.

      • A roadmap of instructions. Each major release provides a guide and a set of clear goals.

      A team of professionals developed OPNsense. Other professional and experienced software architects, engineers, and developers are encouraged to join in the development of the solution to make it as successful as possible. OPNsense offers a variety of rich features with each release. Each upgrade is based on FreeBSD for continual, long-term support and utilizes a freshly advanced MVC framework based on Phalcon. OPNsense is committed to helping businesses, school networks, remote offices, hotels, and other markets in keeping their data protected.

      OPNsense Core Features

      OPNsense continually offers a free, complete, high-end security platform with new releases and features. With each release, OPNsense focuses on providing more unique and better security features in a timely manner. These features include:

      • Captive Portal
      • Built-in reporting and monitoring tools including RRD Graphs
      • Network Flow Monitoring
      • Traffic Shaper
      • Support for Plugins
      • Granular Control Over State Table
      • Dynamic DNS
      • Two-factor authentication throughout the system
      • Netflow Exporter
      • Encrypted Configuration Backup to Google Drive
      • Forward Caching Proxy (transparent) with Blacklist Support
      • Stateful inspection firewall
      • DNS Server & DNS Forwarder
      • High Availability & Hardware Failover (with configuration synchronization & synchronized state tables)
      • DHCP Server and Relay
      • Virtual Private Network (site to site & road warrior, IPsec, OpenVPN & legacy PPTP support)
      • Intrusion Detection and Prevention
      • 802.1Q VLAN support

      Reviews from Real Users

      OPNsense is a favorite security solution among reviewers for a number of reasons. Two of those reasons include the user-friendliness of the solution, which makes it easy to use, and its ability to easily scale.

      For many, a user-friendly solution is essential. FiorindoDi A., a system administration specialist at a tech vendor, says, "The graphic user interface is very good and it is user-friendly, which makes the product easy-to-use."

      Peerspot reviewers speak of the scalability of the solution. For example, an anonymous cloud and infrastructure manager at a venture capital and private equity firm reviewer notes, "OPNsense is easy to scale when running on the hardware."

      Offer
      Learn more about Cisco Secure Firewall
      Learn more about Cisco IOS Security
      Learn more about OPNsense
      Sample Customers
      There are more than one million Adaptive Security Appliances deployed globally. Top customers include First American Financial Corp., Genzyme, Frankfurt Airport, Hansgrohe SE, Rio Olympics, The French Laundry, Rackspace, and City of Tomorrow.
      Arup Group, Brunel University London, City of Biel, Gobierno de Castilla-La Mancha, K&L Gates , New South Wales Rural Fire Service, Offshore Northern Seas, Transplace
      CompuNet Systems GmbH,
      Top Industries
      REVIEWERS
      Financial Services Firm16%
      Comms Service Provider13%
      Computer Software Company9%
      Government8%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Comms Service Provider20%
      Computer Software Company19%
      Government7%
      Educational Organization5%
      REVIEWERS
      Comms Service Provider17%
      Computer Software Company17%
      Financial Services Firm17%
      Security Firm11%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Computer Software Company24%
      Comms Service Provider16%
      Government6%
      Financial Services Firm5%
      REVIEWERS
      Comms Service Provider30%
      Logistics Company20%
      Aerospace/Defense Firm10%
      Financial Services Firm10%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Comms Service Provider27%
      Computer Software Company16%
      Government8%
      Educational Organization5%
      Company Size
      REVIEWERS
      Small Business36%
      Midsize Enterprise24%
      Large Enterprise40%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Small Business28%
      Midsize Enterprise19%
      Large Enterprise53%
      REVIEWERS
      Small Business38%
      Midsize Enterprise31%
      Large Enterprise31%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Small Business23%
      Midsize Enterprise18%
      Large Enterprise59%
      REVIEWERS
      Small Business70%
      Midsize Enterprise10%
      Large Enterprise20%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Small Business26%
      Midsize Enterprise21%
      Large Enterprise53%
      Buyer's Guide
      Cisco IOS Security vs. OPNsense
      November 2022
      Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco IOS Security vs. OPNsense and other solutions. Updated: November 2022.
      656,474 professionals have used our research since 2012.

      Cisco IOS Security is ranked 20th in Firewalls with 14 reviews while OPNsense is ranked 7th in Firewalls with 12 reviews. Cisco IOS Security is rated 7.8, while OPNsense is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of Cisco IOS Security writes "Great security and automation with helpful technical assistance". On the other hand, the top reviewer of OPNsense writes "Unbeatable pricing and easy to configure and use, but it can be configured only through the GUI, and the integration with Azure cloud is difficult". Cisco IOS Security is most compared with pfSense, Fortinet FortiGate, Meraki MX, Zyxel Unified Security Gateway and Fortinet FortiOS, whereas OPNsense is most compared with pfSense, Untangle NG Firewall, Sophos XG, Fortinet FortiGate and WatchGuard Firebox. See our Cisco IOS Security vs. OPNsense report.

      See our list of best Firewalls vendors.

      We monitor all Firewalls 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.