Recommended economical VPN/FIREWALL hardware?

S Connelly
S Connelly used Ask the Experts™
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I'm looking for a sub $1000.00 Firewall appliance with a manageable VPN solution.  This product(s) must support up to 60 clients (VPN = 20 clients).

The criteria:
- Decent security (at the minimum, have some good reviews).
- Relatively easy to use interface
- Highly configurable open/close ports (and ranges)
- Manageable VPN (client restrictions)
  NOTE: if this is not possible in a sub $1000.00 appliance, I'm interested in looking for a s/w solution that offers comprehensive VPN capabilities for under $500.00 (support for at least 20 clients).

I'm willing to consider a s/w solution (rather than hardware appliance)... but it must be extremely low maintenance and be easy to work with.

Thank you,
SDC
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Les MooreSr. Systems Engineer
Top Expert 2008

Commented:
Cisco PIX 506E fits almost perfectly:

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/hw/vpndevc/ps2030/products_data_sheet09186a0080091b13.html

Street price is about $1000-$1200.. only a little over budget.

Also the Cisco 1700 series router can act as a  VPN/Firewall and of course router.  Not sure of price but low end and kind of like 3 devices in one.  I like the modular slots that can be interchanged depending upon need..cards are costly but we are talking Cisco.

You can get an off brand for much less and I'm sure plenty of people will recommend something, but my experience has been rather negative as far as support and reliability are concerned with non-cisco hardware.  You may run into issues later on if you try and connect unlike vpn's in the future.  If you are only doing client connections and thats all you'll do I guess don't worry about it.
S ConnellyTechnical Writer

Author

Commented:
Thank's for the responses people.  I'm surprized that this question (a fairly easy one) didn't generate more responses.  Another suggestion was Nortel's Contivity 100 but as of this moment, I know nothing about it.


The 506E will cost me around $2100.00 Canadian.  I bit more than I planned but after a little research I might be able to make a convincing arguement.

Anyone have experience using this with Novell and/or remote desktop access through (e.g. PCAnywhere)?

Thank you
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Sr. Systems Engineer
Top Expert 2008
Commented:
Nortel's support is nowhere near Cisco's. First they were Wellfleet, then Bay Networks, now Nortel, what next? I've heard some horror stories trying to get Contivity to work right.

The lower cost PIX 501 comes in a version with 50 user licences. Not quite your 60 user requirment, but that's 50 simultaneous users either VPN or inside. Street price just under US $1000 for 3DES license.

The Cisco VPN client is super easy to setup, and it comes with built-in Zone Labs firewall. Users cannot change any configuration to bypass your policies. PIX also supports Microsoft PPTP if you don't want to add a 3d party application.

PCAnywhere is good, but bloated code and fairly expensive. I've had great luck with VNC - and it's free, very small footprint, super easy to set up.
Tightvnc is the latest
http://www.tightvnc.com 
or Tridia VNC:
http://www.tridiavnc.com
S ConnellyTechnical Writer

Author

Commented:
Thank's for the responses people.  I'm surprized that this question (a fairly easy one) didn't generate more responses.  Another suggestion was Nortel's Contivity 100 but as of this moment, I know nothing about it.


The 506E will cost me around $2100.00 Canadian.  I bit more than I planned but after a little research I might be able to make a convincing arguement.

Anyone have experience using this with Novell and/or remote desktop access through (e.g. PCAnywhere)?

Thank you
listening ..
listening ..
Cisco Pix is quite complicated.  I have used many different firewalls/vpn devices and find this to be this best as far as economical goes. its free. you just need a computer to dedicate as the appliance. check it out www.smoothwall.org
Les MooreSr. Systems Engineer
Top Expert 2008

Commented:
Rebelwifi:
>Cisco Pix is quite complicated.
Huh???? NOT!! The PDM Wizard makes it a piece of cake!
Compared to other devices. yes it is more complicated.
Les MooreSr. Systems Engineer
Top Expert 2008

Commented:
G'day, sconnell
It has been 102 days since you first posed this question, and there has been no activity on the question for 87 days, so it's time to clean up this TA.
I will leave a recommendation in the Cleanup topic area for this question:

RECOMMENDATION: Points awarded to: lrmoore

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lrmoore
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