We performed a comparison between Palo Alto Networks and Sophos XG based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.
Comparison Results: Palo Alto Networks comes out on top in this comparison. It is robust, performs well, and has good support. Sophos XG does, however, do better in the Pricing and Ease of Deployment categories.
"One of the nice things about Firepower is that you can set it to discover the environment. If that is happening, then Firepower is learning about every device, software operating system, and application running inside or across your environment. Then, you can leverage the discovery intelligence to get Firepower to select the most appropriate intrusion prevention rules to use for your environment rather than picking one of the base policies that might have 50,000 IPS rules in it, which can put a lot of overhead on your firewall. If you choose the recommendations, as long as you update them regularly, you might be able to get your rule set down to only 1,000 or 1,500, which is a significant reduction in a base rule set. This means that the firewall will give you better performance because there are less rules being checked unnecessarily. That is really useful."
"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."
"The feature set is fine and is rarely a problem."
"Another benefit has been user integration. We try to integrate our policies so that we can create policies based on active users. We can create policies based on who is accessing a resource instead of just IP addresses and ports."
"I like that Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is reliable. Support is also good."
"There are no issues that we are aware of. It does its job silently in the background."
"The most valuable feature would be ASDM. The ability to go in, visualize and see the world base in a clear and consistent manner is very powerful."
"The most valuable features of this solution are the integrations and IPS throughput."
"I like that they are more stable than the previous ones, and they allow a lot of other features."
"It's one of the best products I've worked with. It's typically a market leader on Gartner. It's a very respected brand."
"The technology's very good. We have had a lot of good experience with this solution."
"I like all the functions and features."
"URL filtering and WildFire features are most valuable. It is very user-friendly. It is a very solid product, and it definitely works."
"Flexible and integrates well with apps and other security tools."
"Some of the valuable features in this solution are traffic monitoring, GUI functionality, and it very easy to troubleshoot if there is any problem that happens."
"Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls have a Single Pass Parallel Processing (SP3) Architecture, which has a different kind of code doing the work. It increases the packet processing rate. Whereas, without the SP3 Architecture, you are waiting for each job to complete, even if you have 100 jobs assigned."
"The solution is a next generation firewall and we have gotten good customer feedback."
"The most valuable feature is web filtering."
"It is stable, flexible, and easy to use. It has got a web management portal that can be accessed from anywhere."
"In terms of the functionality, I think it's pretty straightforward. It's easy to pick up. It's also user-friendly."
"In my experience, the solution was easy to use, has lots of features, and is easy to configure."
"What we found valuable is the way they deal with emails, as well as the way the bandwidth usage is shown."
"Reporting is the most valuable feature."
"The performance is good."
"Cisco Firepower is not completely integrated with Active Directory. We are trying to use Active Directory to restrict users by using some security groups that are not integrated within the Cisco Firepower module. This is the main issue that we are facing."
"My team tells me that other solutions such as Fortinet and Palo Alto are easier to implement."
"The maturity needs to be better."
"Report generation is an area that should be improved."
"Implementations require the use of a console. It would help if the console was embedded."
"A major area of improvement would be to have more functionality in public clouds, especially in terms of simplifying it. The high availability doesn't work right now because of the limitations in the cloud."
"Its interface is sometimes is a little bit slow, and it can be improved. When you need to put your appliance in failover mode, it is a little difficult to do it remotely because you need to turn off the appliance in Cisco mode. In terms of new features, it would be good to have AnyConnect VPN with Firepower. I am not sure if it is available at the moment."
"The only drawback of the user interface is when it comes to policies. When you open it and click on the policies, you have to move manually left and right if you want to see the whole field within the cell. Checkpoint has a very detailed user interface."
"The solution could be simplified."
"Over the past one or two years, Palo Alto Networks has added a lot of features into the NG Firewall products. I think this is becoming more complicated for our customers. Therefore, we could use some best practices, best practice tools, and implementation guides for some of the complicated features."
"The solution has normal authentication, but does not have two-factor or multi-factor authentication. There is room for development there."
"It's not so easy to scale out your security capabilities."
"This is a difficult product to manage, so the administrator needs to have a good knowledge of it, otherwise, they will not be able to handle it properly."
"I think automation and machine learning can be improved to make bulk configurations simpler, easier, and faster"
"The solution could offer better pricing. We'd like it if it could be a bit more affordable for us."
"Sometimes some of the applications the customer has do not respond as they normally should."
"It is already secure but it could be better in terms of other breaches that may occur."
"Their tech support is not great."
"They can simplify its interface so that it is mostly drag-and-drop. There was an SQL injection attack on some Sophos devices. They just need to harden their devices a little bit so that they can't be hacked very easily."
"They need to improve the SD-WAN feature."
"The first area that needs to be improved is customer support."
"There should be web caching to improve bandwidth utilization. It should have a very good caching feature. That's because we are in a very poor continent, and the connectivity cost is very high. We have low bandwidth, and the intensive usage of bandwidth is not easy here in Africa. If they improve services for web caching, it would be better."
"The VPN features can be improved. Due to covid-19, we have a lot of employees that work from home and we need better VPN capabilities."
"Support for this product is something that is really important, and it needs to improve."
Cisco Firepower Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW) is a firewall that provides capabilities beyond those of a standard firewall and delivers comprehensive, unified policy management of firewall functions, application control, threat prevention, and advanced malware protection from the network to the endpoint.
Cisco NGFW Firewalls include advanced threat defense capabilities to meet diverse needs, from small offices to high-performance data centers and service providers, and are deployed in leading private and public clouds. Available in a wide range of models, Cisco NGFW can be deployed as a physical or virtual appliance. Cisco NGFW firewalls are also available with clustering for increased performance, high availability configurations, and more.
Key Features of Cisco NGFW Firewalls
Reviews from Real Users
Cisco NGFW stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are its extensive discovery abilities that enable you to constantly see what is happening on your network and take action when necessary, and the high level of protection it provides.
Mike B., a director of IT security at a wellness & fitness company, writes, "It is one of the fastest solutions, if not the fastest, in the security technology space. This gives us peace of mind knowing that as soon as a new attack comes online that we will be protected in short order. From that perspective, no one really comes close now to Firepower, which is hugely valuable to us from an upcoming new attack prevention perspective."
Zhulien K., the lead network security engineer at TechnoCore LTD, notes, " The most valuable feature that Cisco Firepower NGFW provides for us is the Intrusion policy. Again, with that being said, I cannot shy away from giving kudos to all of the other features such as AVC (Application Visibility and Control), SSL Decryption, Identity policy, Correlation policy, REST API, and more. All of the features that are incorporated in the Cisco Firepower NGFW are awesome and easy to configure if you know what you are doing. Things almost always work, unless you hit a bug, which is fixed with a simple software update. "
Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls is a firewall solution designed for security teams that provides them with full visibility and control over all networks via powerful traffic identification, malware prevention, and threat intelligence technologies. In order to determine which applications, users, and content traversing the network are safe, the solution offers companies a variety of advanced security tools and strategies.
Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls Features
Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls has many valuable key features. Some of the most useful ones include:
Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls Benefits
There are several benefits to implementing Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls. Some of the biggest advantages the solution offers include:
Reviews from Real Users
Below are some reviews and helpful feedback written by Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls users.
A Solutions Architect at a communications service provider says, “The product stability and level of security are second to none in the industry. We value the security of our client's infrastructure so these features are valuable to us. An example of a very valuable feature behind Palo Alto is the application-aware identifiers that help the firewall know what its users are trying to do. It can block specific activities instead of just blocking categories. For example, you can block an application, or all unknown applications.”
PeerSpot user Gerry H., CyberSecurity Network Engineer at a university, mentions that the solution has a “Nice user interface, good support, is stable, and has extensive logging capabilities.” He also adds, “Wildfire has been a very good feature. This solution provides a unified platform that natively integrates all security capabilities, which is 100% important to us. This is a great feature.”
Eric S., Network Analyst at a recreational facilities/services company, states, "With its single pane of glass, it makes monitoring and troubleshooting a bit more homogeneous. We are not looking at multiple platforms and monitoring management tools. It is more efficient from that perspective. It is more of a common monitoring and control system for multiple aspects of what used to be different systems. It provides efficiency and time savings."
Sophos XG Firewall is a complete firewall solution that provides all the real-time security and insights you need to protect your network from ransomware and advanced threats. Sophos XG Firewall provides visibility into suspicious users, unknown and unwanted apps, encrypted traffic, and other threats. With its advanced artificial intelligence capabilities, Sophos XG Firewall immediately identifies potential risks and intrusions on web servers and networks.
Sophos XG Firewall Features
Sophos XG Firewall offers a wide range of security features, including:
Reviews from Real Users
Sophos XG Firewall stands out among its competitors, among other reasons, for its intrusion detection capabilities, its user-friendly management platform, and in general, for being a complete and robust firewall solution.
Niranjan P., a network & system support engineer, writes, “Sophos is a comprehensive solution which allows me to configure all the attendant products, such as Sophos's firewall, endpoint, and encryption features. A nice feature of Sophos is that it offers in sync and heartbeat security. When my clients have a perimeter involving Sophos firewall and endpoints with Sophos Endpoint, they can communicate with each other.”
Antonio D., sales manager at INFOSEC, notes, “The product has a console that is based in the cloud for all their products. In this console, they have email security, firewall security, endpoint security, et cetera. All of the products on offer in the console are very useful for us. The solution is stable. The solution works well for enterprises and large-scale organizations.”
Antony M., ICT/HMIS supervisor at a healthcare company, writes, “The VPN feature is the most valuable. It has come in handy during this period when people are working from home. The filtering feature is also valuable because you can easily filter the sites that you don't want to visit. You can also set timely surfing quotas”
Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls is ranked 7th in Firewalls with 77 reviews while Sophos XG is ranked 5th in Firewalls with 144 reviews. Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls is rated 8.6, while Sophos XG is rated 8.0. The top reviewer of Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls writes "The product stability and level of security are second to none in the industry". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Sophos XG writes "Light and stable with excellent real-time control ". Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls is most compared with Azure Firewall, Fortinet FortiGate, Check Point NGFW, Meraki MX and OPNsense, whereas Sophos XG is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate, pfSense, OPNsense, Meraki MX and Azure Firewall. See our Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls vs. Sophos XG report.
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