OPNsense OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

OPNsense is the #7 ranked solution in best firewalls. PeerSpot users give OPNsense an average rating of 8.2 out of 10. OPNsense is most commonly compared to pfSense: OPNsense vs pfSense. OPNsense is popular among the large enterprise segment, accounting for 53% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a comms service provider, accounting for 23% of all views.
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What is OPNsense?

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."

OPNsense Customers

CompuNet Systems GmbH,

OPNsense Pricing Advice

What users are saying about OPNsense pricing:
  • "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."
  • "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."
  • "As an appliance, it's in the medium price range."
  • "It is open source and free."
  • "The solution is not expensive."
  • "The price of OPNsense is good."
  • OPNsense Reviews

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    Ralf Wenzel - PeerSpot reviewer
    Cloud Architect at infotek-software GmbH
    Real User
    Top 5
    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
    Pros and Cons
    • "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 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."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are using it for intrusion detection and prevention. The firewall comes with a lot of third-party modules, and we also use proxy functionalities.

    In our company, we are using it as an appliance, but we are bringing companies to the cloud. We ourselves do not have an Azure layer, but we have got a contract from a customer to bring them to the cloud. So, we are installing it there and monitoring it, but it is not owned by our company. OPNsense is available on appliances, but we have made a special integration with Azure. There is a special mechanism in Azure to deploy firewalls, and we have installed three or four of them.

    We always have the latest version on the firewalls. One should run the updates very frequently.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We are onboarding cloud solutions for customers. We are on Azure. Especially on Azure, when the customers start, they always have small environments. We were looking for the best firewall solution for small environments, not big environments. We needed a small firewall, and we came across OPNsense. For small customers, we will use OPNsense in the future due to cost reasons. These are small installations, and Azure Firewall is very expensive.

    What is most valuable?

    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. 

    What needs improvement?

    The difficult part was the integration with Azure because OPNsense, in most cases, is not used on public clouds. It is on appliances that run on-prem. 

    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. 

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    For how long have I used the solution?

    Within our own company, we have been using it for three or four years as an appliance, and on Azure, we have been using it for three months.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We have run it for three months in production, and we haven't had any problems in three months. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    We run it as an NVA cluster with Azure, and it has good scalability, but when we have bigger deployments, we would use another firewall. I'm not sure if it makes sense to scale up. OPNsense has a very good niche market in comparison to FortiGate, Azure Firewall, or other firewalls. If a customer is starting in the cloud and has 100 or 200 users, I would always recommend OPNsense, but if you have a big installation, and you have a good DevOps team that deploys via source code and things like this, then I would not recommend it. So, the software itself may be scalable, but I wouldn't call it an enterprise-scale firewall.

    In terms of people working with this solution, I'm an architect, and we've got two people for monitoring and setup. Its usage is increasing. It has not been that long since we started using OPNsense, and it fills a gap. Not everybody needs a full-scaled enterprise firewall. So, it will be a part of our business. We've found a niche there.

    How are customer service and support?

    We were in touch with Microsoft support for special networking considerations. The firewall itself was easy for us, and we had no need to reach out to tech support of OPNsense. The heavy part was the Azure part, and we are specialists there.

    How was the initial setup?

    OPNsense deploys it on the Azure marketplace. So, you can download it directly via the Azure marketplace. You do not have to be a partner. From our perspective, it's easy to configure and it's intuitive. We have a background with a lot of firewalls, and we were just looking for a small one.

    We found that not many people have used it on Azure. The firewall itself is not bad, but the support around Azure in terms of documentation and the required infrastructure is not so good, but because we are Azure specialists, we found a very good solution. We would not recommend it for a beginner in Azure.

    In terms of the implementation strategy, there is a cloud adaptation framework. There is a white paper from Microsoft containing best practices for deploying firewalls on Azure, and we had to provide a setup for this, which took some time because it was not easy. It took at least two weeks, but it was only a one-time job. After that, for each firewall, you only have to adapt the rules, which takes two days, but it also depends on the complexity of the infrastructure. If a customer has hundreds of endpoints, it takes longer for sure.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    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.

    What other advice do I have?

    We use it on-prem, and we can recommend it for a standard, typical IT engineer with a networking background. We have had a good experience with it. It is good in terms of functionality and resource usage. It is easy, and we would recommend it, but for implementing it on the Azure cloud, you need good knowledge of Azure. When it comes to public clouds, you do not have your own hardware, and you need deep knowledge of the public cloud on which you are deploying it. It is a good solution if your installation is not too big. We would recommend it for small customers or companies that are starting in the cloud. 

    I would rate it a seven out of ten.

    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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    PeerSpot user
    Director at CIIT
    Real User
    Top 20
    It helps control the bandwidth, is scalable, easy to set up, and has a lot of data available on how to set it up
    Pros and Cons
    • "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."
    • "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."

    What is our primary use case?

    I'm using OPNsense as an open VPN and a firewall to control the traffic.

    How has it helped my organization?

    OPNsense improved my organization in terms of controlling the bandwidth. Limiting the bandwidth is the primary purpose of the solution in the organization.

    What is most valuable?

    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.

    What needs improvement?

    An area for improvement in OPNsense is the hardware, which needs to be updated more frequently.

    An additional feature I want to see in OPNsense is a transparent proxy.

    DNS blocking is another good feature I want to be added to the solution, as that helps make processes faster.

    pfSense has a peer-blocking feature that I also want to see in OPNsense.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've been using OPNsense for more than one year.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    OPNsense is a stable solution. Stability-wise, it's seven out of ten.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    OPNsense is a scalable solution, and I find it very good, but it still depends on your requirement and what you want to achieve from OPNsense.

    How are customer service and support?

    I didn't use OPNsense technical support because I resolved any issues myself.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I used pfSense before using OPNsense, and OPNsense covered most of my environment's needs. My organization uses only one firewall, and that's OPNsense.

    How was the initial setup?

    Setting up OPNsense was easy for me. Even if you don't have experience, there is so much data available that you can follow so that the setup can be done easily.

    The initial setup for OPNsense is an eight out of ten, especially if you know what you want to do and achieve from the solution. You also must try blocking methods based on what and how you want to block.

    It took me two weeks to implement OPNsense completely. I set up the network and made a lab before using OPNsense in a production environment.

    What about the implementation team?

    We implemented OPNsense in-house.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    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.

    What other advice do I have?

    I'm using two products, OPNsense and pfSense.

    I upgraded to the latest version of OPNsense.

    My organization is planning to move OPNsense to the cloud, in particular, hybrid cloud, but right now, it's deployed on-premises. Cloud deployment will be much more efficient than the current on-premises deployment, but I still need to test it before getting approval from the higher-ups.

    Within my organization, fifty people use OPNsense because one department is trying it out. Still, when the solution is fully deployed, there could be from five thousand to six thousand users of OPNsense.

    Ten to twelve people help maintain the solution yearly for the whole campus.

    I advise anyone who wants to implement OPNsense to look into the suppliers and pick the right one because having the right supplier helps you achieve what you want from the solution.

    My rating for OPNsense is eight out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    Cloud and Infrastrcture manager at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    Easy to scale, easy to setup, and reasonably priced
    Pros and Cons
    • "OPNsense is easy to scale when running on the hardware."
    • "The interface needs to be simplified. It is not user-friendly."

    What is our primary use case?

    We upgrade our clients when they are ready for the newer versions of OPNsense.

    We are one of the local cloud providers in Indonesia. We implement OPNsense for the VPN and IPSec. We also collaborate with Zerotier to provide SD-WAN.  

    Our customers have solutions that integrate between on-premises and our cloud.

    We provide this solution for several clients, in multi-location offices. We have several retail customers in the city and we provide OPNsense with plug-in remote access. 

    We also use OPNsense for remote access, and IPSec gives them access to a cloud environment as well as on-premises.

    What is most valuable?

    OPNsense is easy to scale when running on the hardware.

    What needs improvement?

    The interface needs to be simplified. It is not user-friendly.

    The bandwidth management is easy to use, but very hard to implement. The multi-provider internet is protected by OPNsence but the features are limited, and not stable.

    The high availability feature is not feasible when the hardware fails.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been working with OPNsense since 2008.

    Internally we are using the latest version. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The stability of OPNsense needs improvement.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    OPNsense is commonly used in large enterprise companies.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We have not yet contacted technical support. All of the technical issues are resolved within our company.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We are also using pfSense.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup is straightforward. It's an easy process.

    It takes one hour to deploy.

    We provide maintenance for our clients at a cost, however, 90% of our clients are familiar with the product and able to maintain the solution themselves.

    What about the implementation team?

    We are implementors, and we provide this solution for our clients.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    As an appliance, it's in the medium price range.

    What other advice do I have?

    OPNsense is suitable for Small to Medium-sized companies.

    I would recommend this solution to others who are interested in using it.

    I would rate OPNsense an eight out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud

    If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

    Other
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Integrator
    PeerSpot user
    Senior Network Engineer at a comms service provider with 11-50 employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    Free to use, easy to manage, and offers good security options
    Pros and Cons
    • "The initial implementation process is simple."
    • "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."

    What is our primary use case?

    We just use the solution normally for its basic firewall functionality. 

    What is most valuable?

    The normal security options are great. 

    It's light and easy to manage.

    The solution is very stable.

    The initial implementation process is simple. 

    The solution offers a free version.

    What needs improvement?

    While they do have paid options that actually give better features, for most of the clients, if they tend to take a paid option will instead opt for Fortinet.

    They should make it so that it's easier to reverse proxy integration.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The product is quite stable and the performance is good. There are no bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash or freeze. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    We can easily scale the solution if we need to. It's not difficult. 

    How are customer service and support?

    I've only used the free version of the solution. I just have to dig into the forums to find everything I need. There isn't a central place you can reach out to. I've found all the answers I've needed so far via the forums. There's a lot of information there. 

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup is straightforward. It's not overly complex or difficult. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    We're a customer and an end-user.

    We are using the telemetry-free version of the solution. 

    Overall, the solution is quite affordable. 

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I'm aware of Fortinet as well. 

    It depends on price versus performance. If you're willing to pay, Fortinet's great. If you don't have the budget, OPNsense is more affordable.

    What other advice do I have?

    We do supply the solution and we do use it for ourselves.

    I'd advise users to get the Geo functionality. It's a nice add-on, which we make use of a lot. It allows which countries are allowed to access your instances, which is very helpful. 

    I'd rate the solution at a nine out of ten. 

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user1140060 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Machine designer at La Poste
    Real User
    Top 20
    An open-source firewall that works very well and gets updated every month
    Pros and Cons
    • "It has an open license. It works very well, and there is an update every month."
    • "Its interface should be a little bit better."

    What is our primary use case?

    I use it for firewall purposes and OpenVPN. Another use is to protect the servers inside my company. 

    I am using its latest version. It is deployed on my own server.

    What is most valuable?

    It has an open license. It works very well, and there is an update every month.

    What needs improvement?

    Its interface should be a little bit better.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using this solution for three years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It is stable. A month ago, I had an issue for two weeks, but other than that, it has been stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    I don't need scalability. It is a small company. It is a small network. I just need a small firewall at the entrance of the network. I don't need to expand it. 

    In terms of its users, it is the firewall to protect the company, and I am the only one to touch this product.

    How are customer service and support?

    I have never contacted their support.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I used another one a long time ago. I don't remember the name. I went for this because it has an open license and a lot of people use it. I don't remember why, but I prefer this one over pfSense.

    How was the initial setup?

    It is not so difficult to set up. You need to know the minimum things. I do it myself, and I am not an IT person. It is not my job.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    It is open source and free.

    What other advice do I have?

    I can recommend this product but only to people who are able to use it. It is not for everybody. You need to know how to manage it.

    I would rate it a 10 out of 10.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    Elisee TAMBA - PeerSpot reviewer
    Founder/IT Consultant at Open IT World
    Reseller
    Top 20
    A secure, stable and reliable solution
    Pros and Cons
    • "It's more secure and more reliable."
    • "The IPS solution could be more reliable."

    What is our primary use case?

    I moved to OPNsense because it's more secure and more reliable. I use it to secure access to the servers. I have a core backing server, an e-banking server, the main server, and other features with the solution. I make the multi-DMZ packs, so each service is in one DMZ bay, and I use it as a virtual chain.

    What is most valuable?

    The firewall solution is okay because it is like pfSsense.

    What needs improvement?

    The IPS solution could be more reliable. The IPS functioning and internal prevention system functioning could be added to the system. I didn't have it in pfSense, which is why I'm moving to OPNsense, but it is still not working well. They could also have the LZN ones.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using this solution for about four years, and I am using the latest version, OPNsense 21.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It is very stable, and I rate the stability a ten out of ten.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    It is a scalable solution, but I didn't try to scale it because I just used one instance.

    How are customer service and support?

    I don't use technical support. Instead, I use community resources because they give me all the necessary solutions.

    How was the initial setup?

    It is easy to set up, and the deployment took about six months.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The price is good and is better than other computer solutions. The licensing cost is zero because you only have to buy the support. I believe that costs between $900 to $1000 a year.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate this solution a nine out of ten. Regarding advice, if they want to use this solution, they have to know how they want to organize the actual networking. When it is well organized, you can easily deploy OPNsense inside it.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Director at a comms service provider with 11-50 employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    Inexpensive solution with a host of valuable features for SD-WAN protection
    Pros and Cons
    • "We have found pretty much all the features of the solution to be valuable."
    • "The solution could be more secure."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use the solution for an SD-WAN firewall.

    What is most valuable?

    We have found pretty much all the features of the solution to be valuable.

    What needs improvement?

    The solution could be more secure. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using OPNsense for upwards of ten years. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The solution is very stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The solution is scalable. 

    As we have in excess of 2,000 solutions deployed in the field, there is no need for us to increase its usage. It is already sufficiently increased. 

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    In the past we used pfSense. We have also used Sophos and Palo Alto Firewall but have replaced many of these solutions.

    How was the initial setup?

    Our initial setup was more on the straightforward side.

    It did not take a long time, although this can hinge on what needs to be accomplished. 

    What about the implementation team?

    We handled the deployment on our own. 

    The technical team required for deployment and maintenance purposes is small, probably around five people for every 100 devices.

    It consist of a combination of managers, administrators and engineers.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The choice of a license on a yearly or monthly basis is optional. 

    The solution is not expensive. 

    What other advice do I have?

    There are several hundred users in our organization who are utilizing the solution. 

    I would absolutely recommend the solution to others who are contemplating its implementation.

    I rate OPNsense as a ten out of ten. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    Director at a training & coaching company with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    Beneficial compatibility, simple setup, and useful documentation
    Pros and Cons
    • "OPNsense could improve by making the configuration more web-based rather than shell or command-line-based."
    • "OPNsense could improve by making the configuration more web-based rather than shell or command-line-based."

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable feature of OPNsense is compatibility.

    What needs improvement?

    OPNsense could improve by making the configuration more web-based rather than shell or command-line-based.

    The timeline for new features could be better. They could be faster at updating features.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using OPNsense for approximately 10 months.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    OPNsense is stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    We have a maximum of approximately 80 users using this solution on a daily basis.

    How are customer service and support?

    I have not used the support from OPNsense.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I was previously using pfSense but I switched to OPNsense because it was a newer kernel, which would have worked better with our upgraded hardware.

    I have used ClearOS for a long time prior to pfSense.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup of OPNsense is very easy.

    I rate the initial setup of OPNsense a four out of five.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The price of OPNsense is good.

    I rate the price of OPNsense a five out of five.

    What other advice do I have?

    I advise others before they start to see the documentation of the solution first. The documentation was very useful.

    I rate OPNsense an eight out of ten.

    I rated the solution an eight because there's always room for improvement. It's not a perfect solution.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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