Cisco Secure Firewall vs OPNsense comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between Cisco Secure Firewall 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 Secure Firewall vs. OPNsense Report (Updated: January 2023).
672,411 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
"The initial setup was not complex.""You can also put everything into a nice, neat, little package, as far as configuration goes. I was formerly a command-line guy with the ASA, and I was a little nervous about dealing with a GUI interface versus a command line, but after I did my first deployment, I got a lot more comfortable with doing it GUI based.""The most important features are the intrusion prevention engine and the application visibility and control. The Snort feature in Firepower is also valuable.""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.""One of the best features is the ease of use. It's also easy to teach new engineers to use the ASA CLI.""With the pandemic, people began working from home. That was a pretty big move, having all our users working from a home. More capacity needed to be added to our remote VPN. ASA did this very well.""Its security and filtering are most valuable. Every layer of data that comes into the organization goes through it. After setting up the criteria, it automatically filters the traffic. We don't have to check it often.""Cybersecurity resilience has been paramount. Because there is a threat of losing everything if ransomware or another sort of attack were to happen, the cybersecurity resilience has been top-notch."

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"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.""What I like best about OPNsense is that, as a firewall, it's pretty good. I'm quite impressed with it. I had an excellent experience with OPNsense, which helped me achieve the targets I wanted.""OPNsense could improve by making the configuration more web-based rather than shell or command-line-based.""OPNsense is easy to scale when running on the hardware.""It has an open license. It works very well, and there is an update every month.""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.""We have found pretty much all the features of the solution to be valuable."

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Cons
"The only improvement that we could make is maybe [regarding] the roadmap, to have better visibility as to what we are targeting ahead in the next few quarters.""One of the challenges we've had with the Cisco ASA is the lack of a strong controller or central management console that is dependable and reliable all the time.""I would like more features in conjunction with other solutions, like Fortinet.""The access layer of this solution could be improved in terms of the way the devices interconnect with our network. We need to be able to analyze the traffic between the different interconnection in these areas.""Cisco should work on ASDM. One of the biggest drawbacks of Cisco ASA is ASDM GUI. Cisco should improve the ASDM GUI. The configuration through ASDM is really difficult as compared to CLI. Sometimes when you are doing the configuration in ASDM, it suddenly crashes. It also crashes while pushing a policy. Cisco should really work on this.""The ASAs are being replaced with the new Firepowers and they have a different type of structure in the configuration to be able to migrate from one to the other.""We are still running the original ASAs. The software that you are running for the ASDM software and Java application has never been a lot of fun to operate. It would have been nice to see that change update be redesigned with modern systems, which don't play nicely with Java sometimes. Cybersecurity doesn't seem to love how that operates. For us, a fresher application, taking advantage of the hardware, would have been a better approach.""It would be good if Cisco made sure that the solution supports all routing protocols. Sometimes it doesn't."

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"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.""An area for improvement in OPNsense is the hardware, which needs to be updated more frequently. DNS blocking is another good feature I want to be added to the solution. pfSense has a peer-blocking feature that I also want to see in OPNsense.""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 IPS solution could be more reliable.""They should improve IPEs for security in the future.""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.""Its interface should be a little bit better.""The support for OPNsense is good because we have documents available on the internet. The support could improve a little."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "The price for Firepower is more expensive than FortiGate. The licensing is very complex. We usually ask for help from Solutel because of its complexity. I have a Cisco account where I can download the VPN client, then connect. Instead, I create an issue with Solutel, then Solutel solves the case."
  • "I know that licensing for some of the advanced solutions, like Intrusion Prevention and Secure Malware Analytics, are nominal costs."
  • "It is affordable. The hardware is not that expensive anymore. It is a matter of licensing these days."
  • "Cisco is not for a small mom-and-pop shop because of the cost, but if you're in a regulated industry where a breach could cost you a million dollars, it's a bargain."
  • "I like the Smart Licensing, because it is more dynamic and easier to keep track of where you are at. If we have a high availability firewall pair and they are deployed in active/standby rather than active/active, I would expect that we would only pay for one set of licenses because you are using only one firewall at any one time. The other is there just for resiliency. The licensing, from a Firepower perspective, still requires you to have two licenses, even if the firewalls are in active/standby, which means that you pay for the two licenses, even though you might only be using one firewall any one time. This is probably not the best way to do it and doesn't represent the best value for money. This could be looked at to see if it could be done in a fairer way."
  • "We are happy with its price. Licensing is on a yearly basis for technical support. There is one license for technical support. There is another license for IP Version 2 VPN and IPS."
  • "I am happy with the product in general, including the pricing."
  • "Their pricing is very aggressive and good. Even a small company can afford it. I am happy with its pricing. Its licensing is on a yearly basis."
  • More Cisco Secure Firewall Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "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."
  • "I'm using the free version of OPNsense. I didn't check the pricing for the solution because I still need to test it before getting the approval to purchase OPNsense, and it isn't easy to get approval from the higher-ups."
  • 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 usage at large. In my opinion, Fortinet would be the best option and l use… more »
    Top Answer:One of our favorite things about Fortinet Fortigate is that you can deploy on the cloud or on premises. Fortinet Fortigate is very stable, reliable, and consistent. We like that we can manage the… more »
    Top Answer:It is easy to integrate Cisco ASA with other Cisco products and also other NAC solutions. When you understand the Cisco ecosystem, it is very simple to handle. This solution has traffic inspection and… more »
    Top Answer:Two of the most common and well recognized firewalls, PfSense and OPNsense both support site-to-site IPsec VPN and client, Open VPN and client, and PPTP client. Both also have intrusion detection and… more »
    Top Answer:What I like best about OPNsense is that, as a firewall, it's pretty good. I'm quite impressed with it. I had an excellent experience with OPNsense, which helped me achieve the targets I wanted.
    Top Answer:I'm using the free version of OPNsense. I didn't check the pricing for the solution because I still need to test it before getting the approval to purchase OPNsense, and it isn't easy to get approval… more »
    Ranking
    2nd
    out of 48 in Firewalls
    Views
    96,842
    Comparisons
    63,474
    Reviews
    90
    Average Words per Review
    860
    Rating
    8.3
    7th
    out of 48 in Firewalls
    Views
    85,126
    Comparisons
    74,260
    Reviews
    11
    Average Words per Review
    397
    Rating
    8.3
    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
    Learn More
    OPNsense
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    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.

      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 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.
      CompuNet Systems GmbH,
      Top Industries
      REVIEWERS
      Financial Services Firm16%
      Comms Service Provider13%
      Computer Software Company9%
      Government8%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Computer Software Company20%
      Comms Service Provider17%
      Government8%
      Educational Organization5%
      REVIEWERS
      Comms Service Provider30%
      Logistics Company20%
      Aerospace/Defense Firm10%
      Financial Services Firm10%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Comms Service Provider22%
      Computer Software Company16%
      Government9%
      Educational Organization6%
      Company Size
      REVIEWERS
      Small Business35%
      Midsize Enterprise25%
      Large Enterprise40%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Small Business28%
      Midsize Enterprise18%
      Large Enterprise53%
      REVIEWERS
      Small Business67%
      Midsize Enterprise10%
      Large Enterprise24%
      VISITORS READING REVIEWS
      Small Business27%
      Midsize Enterprise20%
      Large Enterprise53%
      Buyer's Guide
      Cisco Secure Firewall vs. OPNsense
      January 2023
      Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Secure Firewall vs. OPNsense and other solutions. Updated: January 2023.
      672,411 professionals have used our research since 2012.

      Cisco Secure Firewall is ranked 2nd in Firewalls with 91 reviews while OPNsense is ranked 7th in Firewalls with 12 reviews. Cisco Secure Firewall is rated 8.2, while OPNsense is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of Cisco Secure Firewall writes "The ability to implement dynamic policies for dynamic environments is important, given the fluidity in the world of security". 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 Secure Firewall is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate, Meraki MX, Palo Alto Networks WildFire, pfSense and Palo Alto Networks VM-Series, whereas OPNsense is most compared with pfSense, Untangle NG Firewall, Sophos XG, Fortinet FortiGate and Check Point NGFW. See our Cisco Secure Firewall 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.