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Cisco ASA or WatchGuard x750e

Posted on 2008-10-17
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Which is better?  Cisco ASA or WatchGuard x750e?  I have an x750e but am approaching my annual maintenance renewal and want to know if I should keep it or change to a Cisco.  What do you think?
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Question by:tf9069
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by:cv790529
ID: 22743590
Depends on if you like the security services in the Watchguard or not really.  I know the Cisco ASA also has it's own security services and I have no experience with them, but I do with Watchguard.  GAV/IPS, SpamScreen, and IPS are really where most firewalls shine or fail these days.  From my Watchguard experience I find these services to be very flexible, effective, and cost efficient for all my customers networks.  Cisco's are probably very similar.  The one problem I would have of moving to a Cisco ASA is the relearning of how to properly setup, troubleshoot, and maintain the new Cisco devices.  I'm not sure what the price ranges are for a Cisco ASA or if they are even comparable to the x750e.  Both devices are solid and can offer high flexiblity.  So it really boils down to 1 thing.  Are you happy with your watchguard?  If not, go Cisco.   If you are happy with the Watchguard, I would stay due to the pain of moving to a Cisco ASA.

I hope that helps.
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by:tf9069
ID: 22744298
Thanks for the comments.  I am happy with the WG for the most part.  What I am having trouble with is... when something is bogging it down, I don't know where to go and look for the cause.  For example, today the performance just went to crap and I couldn't find anything out of the ordinary with the bandwidth meter or service watch.  So I just turned it off and back on.  It worked great again for about 3 hours then it happened again.  I just don't know how to troubleshoot it well and the WG support doesn't really help much.
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cv790529 earned 125 total points
ID: 22744472
Okay, that makes sense, WG definitely does lack on monitoring.   I find the bandwidth monitoring to be very arcaic at best.  Performance on a watchguard can really be seen (if it is a hardware problem) in the Status Tab on Firebox System Manager.  A lot of times, a watchguard can be hit so hard that it utilizes too much of the RAM.  If the RAM is using over half, you will see a performance decline on the throughput.  Also, you can look at connection limits.  You may want to ask Watchguard support about both of these.

I'm not sure if a Cisco ASA can give you much better monitoring support.  That is something should be researched before diving in.
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