FortiGate vs SonicWall TZ in our latest Firewall Roundup!

Corporate Armor can happily recommend both FortiGate and SonicWall security appliances readily. However, knowing what delineates them might be helpful when it comes time for you to shop for a firewall. These are both very popular lines. The FortiGate FG40F, from $362, the FG60F, from $508, the SonicWall TZ300W, and the TZ400 are hugely popular.

However, it’s worth noting that this is not an exhaustive, winner-take-all contest. Rather, we hope to helpfully compare two very good choices. The goal is to provide clarity on what distinguishes these two product families.

FortiGate according to real users

FortiGate’s SSL-VPN is generally highly regarded and reliable. Plus, Fortinet Secure SD-WAN delivered comparably total cost of ownership per Mbps among other vendors. This dollar-value is often cited in customer reviews of FortiGates. And, being Fortinet, the actual security features will be about the best you’ll see. Customer’s also like Fortinet’s clear and straightforward pricing structure.

SonicWall TZ according to real users

Users single out SonicWall’s excellent traffic inspection. Geolocation-based traffic filtering is also very useful. The TZ series also features highly configurable network access rules controlling who and cannot access networks. Its antivirus is also highly praised, and users point out that the SonicWall TZ appliance cost is low.

In FortiGate’s column

It’s a complete solution. For example, if you buy switches, just put in the FortiGate firewall. The switches get all the policies and rules that you already have in the firewall. Unlike other vendors, FortiGate just connects the FortiSwitch to the Fortinet and that’s it.

FortiGate has good VPN, both IPsec and SSL. Device ID is very flexible. This enables the creation of rules to regulate all sorts of devices that might show up on a network, especially via WiFi. And, the IPsec tunnels are very easily created,and play nicely with devices from other vendors. In addition, high-performing SSL VPN keeps users secure while working from home.

In SonicWall’s column

Customers find SonicWall’s traffic shaping rules and setup to be somewhat more intuitive than Fortinet’s.

Unlike FortiGate, the licensing is a la carte, which is more a preference than an advantage. It can help to keep costs down, and really address your own, customized needs. For example, if you don’t want IPS, you don’t have to get it. A lot of people like this modularity. And it’s a real upside of SonicWall’s.

In summary, it just depends on your requirements. Are you looking for the most secure all-in-one solution? Then look for a solution that has many security features. Things like firewall, VPN, AV, IPS, Anti-Spam, APT blocking, Threat detection & Response, and so on. But, be sure they do those things well, too. Or at least in your critical categories.

On the other hand, are you looking for the easiest to manage solution? How are all the features managed? One console or multiple? One step or 10 steps to manage a feature? Do you need VPNs? How easy are they to setup? How important is centralized logging and monitoring?

Do you need multiple units? Can the config be copied from one to the other? Can policies be created and pushed to multiple devices? Do you need Networking features like SD-WAN?

What is included in the base price vs what add-ons do you require? What are the renewal costs? Sometimes products are offered at a great price but then the revenue is made up in renewals.

Corporate Armor is here to help to ask yourself the right questions and make the very best decision for your networking and security needs. Of course, we are happy to help in any way we can. So email us, or call 877-449-0458. Thanks for reading!

Fortinet highlights

Excellent VPN, both IPsec and SSL
Flexible Device ID
High Throughputs across the board

SonicWall TZ highlights

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Intuitive traffic shaping rules and setup
A la carte licensing model
Good intrusion and brute-force attack prevention