Fortinet FortiGate vs OPNsense comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Jul 9, 2023

We performed a comparison between Fortinet FortiGate and OPNsense based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

Features: Fortinet FortiGate is highly regarded for its all-inclusive package, intuitive interface, strong security features, expandability, and centralized administration. OPNsense is appreciated for its scalability, user-friendly nature, adaptability, reliability, and availability of a free version.

Fortinet FortiGate could be enhanced in areas such as SSL VPN capabilities, multi-factor authentication, filtering accuracy, support system, reporting capabilities, antivirus and IPS functionality, delivery reliability, logging information, security features, scalability, navigation, container security, and WAF functionality. OPNsense could improve its interface, bandwidth management, protection across multiple internet providers, high availability, logging, management of different groups, integration, reporting, SSL inspection, and learning curve.

Service and Support: Fortinet FortiGate and OPNsense products have varied reviews. Certain customers have expressed satisfaction with Fortinet, while some have criticized the support provided by OPNsense.

Ease of Deployment: The setup process for Fortinet FortiGate is generally straightforward and can take anywhere from a few hours to a couple of days or even up to two months. OPNsense's initial setup is described as easy and not too difficult, typically taking a few hours for installation and configuration. However, certain environments like Azure may require additional setup and adaptation, which can extend the implementation process.

Pricing: Fortinet FortiGate offers different packages and pricing options for setup, which are considered reasonable and competitive. However, the renewal prices might be higher. OPNsense is an open-source solution with affordable pricing, mainly determined by hardware expenses. Although a paid version is available, the free version is widely utilized.

ROI: Fortinet FortiGate is a worthwhile investment that delivers positive outcomes by reducing costs in data communications. It offers efficient protection against threats and allows for centralized management. OPNsense has experienced notable progress, achieving a return on investment in under three months and eliminating the need for recurring fees.

Comparison Results: Fortinet FortiGate is highly recommended by users due to its extensive package solution, user-friendly interface, stable performance, strong security capabilities, and ease of use. It offers additional features such as SSL VPN, load balancing, and multi-tenancy. Fortinet FortiGate also excels in customer service and support, with users appreciating their quick response times and helpful assistance.

To learn more, read our detailed Fortinet FortiGate vs. OPNsense Report (Updated: March 2024).
757,198 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 signature database and zero-day detection are Fortinet FortiGate's most valuable features.""Their proxy-based inspection is responsive and secure.""The most important feature, normally for small business customers, is link load balancing.""The reporting and monitoring are very good.""The solution is very, very easy to use.""I really like the captive portal feature for our guest network. It has nice VLAN features in terms of separating our network. The anti-virus is also good.""The security features that they have are quite good. On top of that, their licensing model is quite nice where they don't charge you anything for the SD-WAN functionality for the firewall.""Using this product makes the VPN seamless and almost invisible to me in the sense that I don't have to think about it."

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"The interface and the dashboard are the most valuable features of this solution.""We have been operating here in our lab for several months, and everything appears to be extremely stable.""The solution is good for a basic firewall for a small business or for home use.""The most valuable features are reporting, the Sensei plugin, and firewall capabilities.""The solution is user-friendly and easy to configure.""The system in general is quite flexible.""The solution has high availability.""OPNsense is easy to use and open source."

More OPNsense Pros →

Cons
"The firmware needs improvement because there are bugs when a new release comes through. Sometimes, the configuration changes, and it's a bit harder to see where the fail is. The first time that you have the firmware, it tends to have some issues, and it's better to wait a bit to update the equipment.""With the reports, you can see it, and you can get good feelings so upper management can go, "Oh, wow. That looks pretty." However, it's very basic.""Fortinet FortiGate could improve by having more storage in the hardware for log data.""Improvement is needed in the Web Filter quotas to restrict users with allocated quotas.""There are just some services that aren't available. For example, the Ethernet or point-to-point protocols. They could add these services to their product offering - especially services for ISPs.""In the future, I would like to see improvements made to cloud-based management.""The way everything is set up could be easier. Currently, people need a lot of experience and knowledge to administer it and to link it to devices.""The updates Fortinet provides are sometimes unstable."

More Fortinet FortiGate Cons →

"You will need additional training before you can actually start to use it.""The solution could be more secure.""On the customer-side, because I'm a small business, I need a cheaper or free solution option.""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.""I would like better documentation concerning the provided packages and their integration.""The interface of the solution is an area with shortcomings.""There are issues with stability and reliability.""OPNsense showed me some problems when using it in different environments. The problem is integration with a virtual server."

More OPNsense Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "Fortinet has one or two license types, and the VPN numbers are only limited by the hardware chassis make."
  • "These boxes are not that expensive compared to what they can do, their functionality, and the reporting you receive. Fortinet licensing is straightforward and less confusing compared to Cisco."
  • "Go for long term pricing negotiated at the time of purchase."
  • "Work through partners for the best pricing."
  • "The value is the capability of having multiple services with one unique license, not having the limitation per user licensing schema, like other vendors."
  • "Easy to understand licensing requirements."
  • "​We saved a bundle by not needing all the past appliances from an NGFW.​"
  • "The cost is too high... They have to focus on more features with less cost for the customer. If you see the market, where it's going, there are a lot of players offering more features for less cost."
  • More Fortinet FortiGate Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "We are not paying any licensing fees. OPNsense is completely free for us."
  • "It costs about $1000."
  • "There are no licensing costs for OPNsence."
  • "OPNsense is open source software so at this time it is free for us to use."
  • "OPNsense is a well known open-source tool."
  • "It is not an expensive product. Basically, I deployed it because it was the fastest solution to satisfy our needs in open source."
  • "OPNsense is an open-source solution and it is free to use."
  • "The solution is not expensive."
  • 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 Fortinet too.… more »
    Top Answer:From my experience regarding both the Sophos and FortiGate firewalls, I personally would rather use FortiGate. I know the firewalls change every 5 to 7 years as stated but you really do need to… more »
    Top Answer:As a solution, Sophos UTM offers a lot of functionality, it scales well, and the stability and performance are quite good. The most valuable features for me are their web and email filtering. I would… 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:The DNS-level filtering is impressive for thwarting time scanners.
    Top Answer:It is a free solution, and when you compare it to alternatives like FortiGate, which is quite powerful but also costly, the value becomes evident. Even with options like Sophos, where responsiveness… more »
    Ranking
    2nd
    out of 59 in Firewalls
    Views
    126,666
    Comparisons
    92,626
    Reviews
    64
    Average Words per Review
    574
    Rating
    8.4
    3rd
    out of 59 in Firewalls
    Views
    109,721
    Comparisons
    96,379
    Reviews
    19
    Average Words per Review
    479
    Rating
    8.3
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    FortiGate 60b, FortiGate 60c, FortiGate 80c, FortiGate 50b, FortiGate 200b, FortiGate 110c, FortiGate
    Learn More
    Fortinet
    Video Not Available
    OPNsense
    Video Not Available
    Overview

    Fortinet FortiGate is an innovative line of firewalls that aim to protect organizations from all types of web-based network threats. They come in a wide variety of product types. Fortinet FortiGate’s solutions are available in a large range of sizes and form factors and are key components of the Fortinet Security Fabric, which enables immediate, intelligent defense against known and new threats throughout the entire network.

    Fortinet FortiGate provides users with next-generation firewall solutions that provide proven protection with unmatched performance across the network, from internal segments to data centers to cloud environments. You can protect every part of your network without exception. Additionally, your protections can be managed from a single central location. This ensures that the task of protecting your network is infinitely easier to accomplish.

    Benefits of Fortinet FortiGate

    Some of the benefits of using Fortinet FortiGate include:

    • The ability to manage your firewalls from a centralized automated control console. Fortinet FortiGate’s FortiManager enables administrators to exercise control of their firewalls in a streamlined manner. Administrators have full visibility and control over their system from a single location. It utilizes automation that collects information in real time, which greatly simplifies and reduces the cost of running various types of workflows. Administrators can free up resources by automating the most basic tasks.
    • The ability to produce uniform, appropriate, and coordinated responses to threats across networks. Fortinet FortiGate’s FortiGuard feature generates system protections in near real time. This allows administrators to address threats to the system with custom-made solutions that can be uniformly enforced.
    • The ability to scale up your security to fit your changing security needs. Fortinet FortiGate’s design allows users to accelerate the transfer of data between users and escalate the number of users that are covered without compromising security of performance. This means that users can grow their networks and continue to collaborate without worrying about the system slowing down or coming under attack.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Fortinet FortiGate’s firewall solutions are cutting edge. They stand out from competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are the robustness and power of their firewalls. Fortinet FortiGate’s firewall provides users with many valuable features that allow them to maximize what they can do with the solution. These firewalls enable users to use a single piece of software to accomplish tasks that often require the use of multiple pieces of software.

    PeerSpot user Eric S., a Solutions Engineer and Consultant at a tech-services company, notes the robustness of this solution when he writes, "One of the nice things about FortiGate is that it can be deployed on the cloud or on-premises. You can actually do both. That's the biggest reason why I stick with this solution as opposed to something like Cisco Meraki. Another nice thing is that I can log directly into a FortiGate or get to it through their FortiCloud access products. They're pretty reliable and consistent. One of the reasons why I started using the product was their single pane of management. I can deploy their line of firewalls in conjunction with their switching and access points, and I can manage the entire network from one interface.”

    PeerSpot user Jim M., a network admin at Penobscot Valley Hospital, notes the power of Fortinet FortiGate’s security software when he writes, "It does a lot for you for intrusion protection and as an antivirus. The threat management bundle is worth the money. You don't need another company to monitor your web traffic for you. You can do everything yourself on the firewall. You restrict your own black list for people on the firewall.”

    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."

    Sample Customers
    Pittsburgh Steelers, LUSH Cosmetics, NASDAQ, Verizon, Arizona State University, Levi Strauss & Co. Whitepaper and case studies here
    1. Deciso B.V. 2. iXsystems, Inc.  3. EuroBSDCon  4. Netgate  5. Claranet  6. Voleatech  7. Open Systems AG  8. Securebit AG  9. Proxmox Server Solutions GmbH  10. AVM Computersysteme Vertriebs GmbH  Additional customers include: T-Systems International GmbH, Deutsche Telekom AG, Vodafone GmbH, 1&1 IONOS SE, OVHcloud, Hetzner Online GmbH, Strato AG, PlusServer GmbH, Host Europe GmbH, United Internet AG, 1&1 Versatel Deutschland GmbH, QSC AG, Bechtle AG, Cancom SE, Computacenter AG & Co. oHG, T-Systems Multimedia Solutions GmbH, Atos SE, Capgemini SE, Accenture plc, IBM Corporation, Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, Cisco Systems, Inc.
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Computer Software Company9%
    Financial Services Firm8%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Educational Organization20%
    Computer Software Company15%
    Comms Service Provider8%
    Manufacturing Company5%
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider24%
    Financial Services Firm18%
    Logistics Company12%
    Aerospace/Defense Firm6%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Computer Software Company15%
    Government9%
    Educational Organization6%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business48%
    Midsize Enterprise22%
    Large Enterprise30%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business27%
    Midsize Enterprise32%
    Large Enterprise41%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business70%
    Midsize Enterprise12%
    Large Enterprise18%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business32%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise50%
    Buyer's Guide
    Fortinet FortiGate vs. OPNsense
    March 2024
    Find out what your peers are saying about Fortinet FortiGate vs. OPNsense and other solutions. Updated: March 2024.
    757,198 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Fortinet FortiGate is ranked 2nd in Firewalls with 70 reviews while OPNsense is ranked 3rd in Firewalls with 21 reviews. Fortinet FortiGate is rated 8.4, while OPNsense is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of Fortinet FortiGate writes "Efficient, user-friendly, and affordable". On the other hand, the top reviewer of OPNsense writes "There are lots of capabilities built-in: Few would be High Availability, Proxy, DNS, Intrusion detection/prevention, content filtering, traffic and bandwidth management with 2factor autn. ". Fortinet FortiGate is most compared with Sophos XG, Cisco Secure Firewall, Netgate pfSense, Meraki MX and Juniper SRX Series Firewall, whereas OPNsense is most compared with Netgate pfSense, Sophos XG, Untangle NG Firewall, Sophos UTM and WatchGuard Firebox. See our Fortinet FortiGate vs. OPNsense report.

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    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.