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FireEye Network Security vs pfSense comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between FireEye Network Security and pfSense based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out in this report how the two ATP (Advanced Threat Protection) solutions compare in terms of features, pricing, service and support, easy of deployment, and ROI.

To learn more, read our detailed FireEye Network Security vs. pfSense report (Updated: September 2022).
632,539 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
"At the moment we are satisfied with this product. It's a stable, scalable, and resilient solution for us.""The risk level notifications are most valuable. We get to know what kind of intrusion or attack is there, and we can fix a problem on time.""Does a thorough job of examining email and URLs for malicious content.""Safe attachments, safe links, policies, and the ability to protect from zero-day threats are the most valuable features.""The most valuable feature of Microsoft Defender for Office 365 is the ease of use.""The most valuable feature is the integration. It's a single console, so we don't have to switch around between multiple products. Another valuable feature is the ease of operations and maintenance.""It also gives the vulnerability status according to the versions you have selected. Let's say you have Google Chrome. It mentions the versions it has, and it updates. Within two hours of an update, it is reflected in the dashboard. That's really nice to have.""The solution is very easy to use. All you have to do is to assign the license to the end-user and it's done. The customer will only have the feature activated, and the solution will monitor the emails to determine if they are a threat or not."

More Microsoft Defender for Office 365 Pros →

"It is stable and quite protective. It has a lot of features to scan a lot of malicious things and vulnerabilities.""Very functional and good for detecting malicious traffic.""I also like its logging method. Its logging is very powerful and useful for forensic purposes. You can see the traffic or a specific activity or how something entered your network and where it went.""The solution can scale.""The sandbox feature of FireEye Network Security is very good. The operating system itself has many features and it supports our design.""The most valuable feature is the network security module.""The server appliance is good.""It protects from signature-based attacks and signature-less attacks. The sandboxing technology, invented by FireEye, is very valuable. Our customers go for FireEye because of the sandboxing feature. When there is a threat or any malicious activity with a signature, it can be blocked by IPS. However, attacks that do not have any signatures and are very new can only be blocked by using the sandboxing feature, which is available only in FireEye. So, FireEye has both engines. It has an IPS engine and a sandbox engine, which is the best part. You can get complete network protection by using FireEye."

More FireEye Network Security Pros →

"The built-in open VPN and the VPN Client Export are the solution's most valuable aspects.""The initial setup is straightforward.""The intrusion detection feature is the most valuable. It is an open-source firewall, so there is a lot of material on it. I also find the open VPN capability very nice. It is pretty customizable. The clustering and the high availability are the two biggest things to be able to get out of a firewall.""It is a stable solution. It is also easy to install and can be deployed and maintained by one team member.""The solution is fairly scalable when it comes to integrating with other applications and data sets.""Content protection, content inspection, and the application level firewall.""The solution is very easy to use and configure.""My technicians find the pfSense's web interface very useful. It is very easy to use. pfSense is very reliable and stable. We like the OpenVPN clients that can be deployed using pfSense very much."

More pfSense Pros →

Cons
"We are always looking for others tools to increase automation on tasks. There can be better integration with other solutions, such as PowerPoint and email.""Too many false positives and lacks an accurate capability to detect malicious SharePoint sites.""In some situations, it has not been able to pick impersonated emails having no attachments. Technical support definitely has a scope for improvement.""We need a separate license and we don't know how to get the license that is required.""I'd like some additional features any product can give me to protect our environment in a better way.""In one of the reports I can get the exact place where a vulnerable file resides. But for that, I need to explicitly go into the device and check. If they could include that file part in the report, without my having to go to the device itself, that would help.""It would be better if it were more scalable. It depends on the architecture, but we would like to make it more scalable for both data centers.""This product's effectiveness could be improved, in terms of detecting unwanted spam or even malware between the emails, compared to other products."

More Microsoft Defender for Office 365 Cons →

"Technical support could be improved.""Its documentation can be improved. The main problem that I see with FireEye is the documentation. We are an official distributor and partner of FireEye, and we have access to complete documentation about how to configure or implement this technology, but for customers, very limited documentation is available openly. This is the area in which FireEye should evolve. All documents should be easily available for everyone.""It is very expensive, the price could be better.""Technical packaging could be improved.""They can maybe consider supporting some compliance standards. When we are configuring rules and policies, it can guide whether they are compliant with a particular compliance authority. In addition, if I have configured some rules that have not been used, it should give a report saying that these rules have not been used in the last three months or six months so that I disable or delete those rules.""FireEye Network Security should have better integration with other vendors' firewalls or proxies, such as Palo Alto and Fortinet. Files that are being submitted should happen through the API or automatically.""I heard that FireEye recently was hacked, and a lot of things were revealed. We would like FireEye to be more secure as an organization. FireEye has to be more protective because it is one of the most critical devices that we are using in our environment. They have a concept called SSL decryption, but that is only the packet address. We would like FireEye to also do a lot of decryption inside the packet. Currently, FireEye only does encryption and decryption of the header, but we would like them to do encryption and decryption of the entire packet.""It is an expensive solution."

More FireEye Network Security Cons →

"pfSense has some limitations in detecting site sessions. We want to control internet usage based on sites and their content, and pfSense doesn't perform this function.""It needs to be more secure.""It's just not listed as FIPS compliant for where we're at now in government, which is an issue.""The integration could be improved.""It would be great to add more to security.""Many people have problems setting up the web cache for the web system.""I'd like to find something in pfSense that is more specific to URL filtering. We have customers who would like to filter their web traffic. They would like to be able to say to their employees, "You can surf the web, but you cannot get access to Facebook or other social media," or "You can surf the web, but you're not allowed to gamble or watch porn on the web." My technicians say that doing this kind of stuff with pfSense nowadays is not easy. They can implement some filters using IP addresses but not by using the names of the domains and categories. So, we are not able to exclude some categories from the allowed traffic, such as porn, gambling, etc. To do that, we have to use another product and another web filter that uses DNS. I know that there are some third-party products that could work with pfSense, but I'd like the native pfSense solution to do that.""Ultimately, we'd like something stronger, and something that can handle threats better in real-time."

More pfSense Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "It's a user-base subscription."
  • "From the pricing point of view, like any other product in the market, there is scope for negotiation."
  • "Defender is a little bit more expensive as compared to others. We are in the manufacturing environment. So, we don't have a high budget for all of our endpoint devices. Its cost is a major concern for us."
  • "For licensing, it's usually a yearly package for customers who are subscribed to Office 365, but they can also pay on a monthly basis."
  • "Microsoft Defender for Office 365 is an add-on to the Office license. Many customers are purchasing this solution."
  • "Microsoft Defender for Office 365 comes with Microsoft Windows. It is free with the operating system."
  • More Microsoft Defender for Office 365 Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The user fee is not as high but the maintenance fee is expensive."
  • "It's an expensive solution."
  • "Its price is a bit high. A small customer cannot buy it. Its licensing is on a yearly basis."
  • "When you purchase FireEye Network Security NX, will need to purchase a megabit per second package. You must know your needs from day one."
  • More FireEye Network Security Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "We are using the open-source version, not the commercial one."
  • "It has almost zero cost, and it is open to us. It runs on a small appliance just for a couple of 100 bucks, and I've never had an appliance burn out on me yet."
  • "It is open source."
  • "I spent a couple of $1,000 on hardware, and the OS was free. A comparable firewall would cost me probably 20 grand. It saved a lot of money."
  • "I like the fact that it is open-source."
  • "The pricing is lower than some of its competitors."
  • "pfSense is open-source."
  • "We are using the open-source version which is free. We are testing the solution to see if we are going to go to the enterprise version which requires a license and is not free."
  • More pfSense Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:It also gives the vulnerability status according to the versions you have selected. Let's say you have Google Chrome. It… more »
    Top Answer:I would recommend Microsoft Defender for Office 365. If you already have a deployment method, like CCM or something… more »
    Top Answer:In one of the reports, I can get the exact place where a vulnerable file resides. But for that, I need to explicitly go… more »
    Top Answer:It protects from signature-based attacks and signature-less attacks. The sandboxing technology, invented by FireEye, is… more »
    Top Answer:Its price is a bit high. A small customer cannot buy it. Its licensing is on a yearly basis.
    Top Answer:Its documentation can be improved. The main problem that I see with FireEye is the documentation. We are an official… more »
    Top Answer:You don't really specify what type of router you are looking for but if you are talking about a gateway router I… more »
    Top Answer:Fortinet’s Fortigate is a firewall solution we use and are very much satisfied with its performance. We find Fortigate… more »
    Top Answer:Two of the most common and well recognized firewalls, PfSense and OPNsense both support site-to-site IPsec VPN and… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    MS Defender for Office 365
    FireEye
    Learn More
    Netgate
    Video Not Available
    Overview

    Microsoft Defender for Office 365 protects all of Office 365 against advanced threats like business email compromise and credential phishing, and automatically investigates and remediates attacks. With Defender for O365 you get Integrated threat protection for all of Office 365 that gives you:

    - Native protection for Office 365 with built-in protection that simplifies administration, lowers total cost of ownership, and boosts productivity.

    - Unparalleled scale and effectiveness with powerful automated workflows to improve SecOps efficiency.

    - A complete solution for collaboration that protects you from attacks across the kill chain.

    To learn more about our solution, ask questions, and share feedback, join our Microsoft Security, Compliance and Identity Community.

    FireEye Network Security is an advanced threat protection and breach detection platform that provides industry leading threat visibility and protection against the world’s most sophisticated and damaging attacks. By leveraging FireEye’s unique technologies and threat intelligence, FireEye Network Security detects what other security solutions miss, providing holistic security from the perimeter to the network core.

    pfSense is a free and open-source operating system for routers and firewalls, and is typically configured as DHCP server, DNS server, WiFi access point, VPN server, all running on the same hardware device. It is operated through a user-friendly web interface, making administration easy even for users with limited networking knowledge.

    In addition, pfSense is feature-rich, has a mature platform, is customizable, is flexible by design, and can be used on a small home router as well as run the entire network of a large corporation. pfSense puts you in control of your networking, is regularly updated, and works to promptly patch security issues. pfSense has recently become the favored alternative to the industry leader, Cisco.

    pfSense is:

    • Robust
    • Powerful
    • Easy to use
    • Secure
    • Scalable

    pfSense Key Features

    pfSense has many key features and capabilities, including:

    • Strength and accuracy: pfSense is able to always follow either default or custom rules, making it a stronger firewall than some of its competitors. It also filters traffic separately, whether it’s coming from your internal network of devices or the open internet, allowing you to set different rules and policies for each.

    • Flexibility: pfSense can work both as a basic firewall and as a complete security system because it gives you the flexibility to integrate additional features as code where necessary.

    • Open-source: Because it is open-source, not only is pfSense free to use, but community members can contribute to the code to make it a better software.

    • User-friendly: Usually firewall products are not user-friendly because they often include complex settings, options, and features that require fine-tuning. pfSense’s interface is simple, direct, and easy to use.

    • WireGuard Support: Instead of building your own VPN using pfSense, or settling for a commercial VPN provider, you can directly integrate WireGuard with the pfSense firewall.

    • Speed Management and Fault Tolerance: pfSense’s multi-WAN feature allows your system to continue operating in case components fail.

    • Well-supported: pfSense regularly has security and feature updates. It also has a documentation site and a well-informed and knowledgeable support forum.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Below is some feedback from PeerSpot Users who are currently using the solution.

    Bojan O., CEO at In.sist d.o.o., says, “The classic features, such as content inspection, content protection, and the application-level firewall, are the most important."

    Another PeerSpot user, a chef at a media company, explains what he finds most valuable about pfSense: "The plugins or add-ons are most valuable. Sometimes, they are free of charge, and sometimes, you have to pay for them, but you can purchase or download very valuable plugins or add-ons to perform internal testing of your network and simulate a denial-of-service attack or whichever attack you want to simulate. You can also remote and monitor your network and see where the gap is."

    T.O., a VP of Business Development at a tech services company, mentions, "What I found most valuable is the cost of the platform, the flexibility of the platform, and the fact that the ongoing fees are not there as they are with the competitor."



    Offer
    Learn more about Microsoft Defender for Office 365
    Learn more about FireEye Network Security
    Learn more about pfSense
    Sample Customers
    Microsoft Defender for Office 365 is trusted by companies such as Ithaca College.
    FFRDC, Finansbank, Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Investis, Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, Bank of Thailand, City of Miramar, Citizens National Bank, D-Wave Systems
    Nerds On Site Inc., RKC Development Inc., Expertech, Fisher's Technology, Ncisive, Consulting, CPURX, Vaughn's Computer House Calls, Imeretech LLC, Digital Crisis, Carolina Digital Phone, Technigogo Technology Services, The Simple Solution, SwiftecITInc, Rocky Mountain Tech Team, Free Range Geeks, Alaska Computer Geeks, Lark Information Technology, Renaissance Systems Inc., Cutting Edge Computers, Caretech LLC, GoVanguard, Network Touch Ltd, P.C. Solutions.Net, Vision Voice and Data Systems LLC, Montgomery Technologies, Techforce, Concero Networks, ASONInc, CPS Electronics and Consulting, Darkwire.net LLC, IT Specialists, MBS-Net Inc., VOICE1 LLC, Advantage Networking Inc., Powerhouse Systems, Doxa Multimedia Inc., Pro Computer Service, Virtual IT Services, A&J Computers Inc., Envision IT LLC, CommunicaONE Inc., Bone Computer Inc., Amax Engineering Corporation, QPG Ltd. Co., IT 101 Inc., Perfect Cloud Solutions, Applied Technology Group Inc., The Digital Sun Group LLC, Firespring
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Manufacturing Company25%
    Comms Service Provider25%
    Performing Arts13%
    Logistics Company13%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    Government8%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm27%
    Government13%
    University13%
    Manufacturing Company13%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company19%
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Financial Services Firm11%
    Government8%
    REVIEWERS
    University12%
    Comms Service Provider10%
    Marketing Services Firm10%
    Energy/Utilities Company6%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider29%
    Computer Software Company15%
    Government7%
    Educational Organization5%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business33%
    Midsize Enterprise27%
    Large Enterprise40%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business27%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise54%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business39%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise42%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business20%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise64%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business70%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise13%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business27%
    Midsize Enterprise24%
    Large Enterprise49%
    Buyer's Guide
    ATP (Advanced Threat Protection)
    September 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Palo Alto Networks, Morphisec, Microsoft and others in ATP (Advanced Threat Protection). Updated: September 2022.
    632,539 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    FireEye Network Security is ranked 8th in ATP (Advanced Threat Protection) with 7 reviews while pfSense is ranked 2nd in Firewalls with 58 reviews. FireEye Network Security is rated 8.8, while pfSense is rated 8.6. The top reviewer of FireEye Network Security writes "A reliable and complete network protection solution that protects from signature-based and signature-less attacks and has powerful logging". On the other hand, the top reviewer of pfSense writes "Feature-rich, well documented, and there is good support available online". FireEye Network Security is most compared with Palo Alto Networks WildFire, Zscaler Internet Access, Fortinet FortiSandbox, Check Point SandBlast Network and Cisco ASA Firewall, whereas pfSense is most compared with OPNsense, Fortinet FortiGate, Sophos XG, Untangle NG Firewall and Sophos UTM.

    We monitor all ATP (Advanced Threat Protection) 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.