View Poll Results: What firewall do you use for small business?

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  • Sonicwall, Firebox or other "business class" firewall

    1 25.00%
  • High end model firewall/router (from Linksys, Dlink, Netgear, etc.)

    3 75.00%
Results 1 to 3 of 3
  1. #1
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    "Business Class" hardware firewall really needed?

    I've installed several Sonicwall / Firebox firewalls at client locations. Lately, for single user / small offices I've used a Netgear N600 (WNDR3700) , which has SPI and NAT firewall protection. I realize that it is likely not nearly as sophisticated as a "commercial" firewall, but I've never had a problem using the NetGear and it has some great features for the price.

    Most of my clients use Small Business Server 2003/2008 and I also run Enterprise antivirus on all workstations and keep them pretty well locked down. Most clients also use third party mail filtering (Postini) for additional security against spam/malware, etc. Maybe I'm lucky, but I've had ZERO instances over the past 10 years of a client network being compromised by an attack through their firewall/router, whether it was a Sonicwall, Netgear, Linksys, Dlink, etc.

    My question is what is sacrificed (in terms of safety) by using something like the Netgear WNDR3700 versus, say a Sonicwall TZ200 WirelessN? Please feel free to describe, in laymans terms (I'm no firewall expert), the benefits that the Sonicwall offers to justify the price difference (over triple the cost of the WNDR3700) to my clients. In today's environment it's often hard to convince clients to open their wallets that wide for what they consider a "black box".

    Or, do the higher-end models of the major brands (like Linksys, Dlink, Netgear, etc.) offer sufficient protection for a small office environment?

    What has been your experience with whichever firewall(s) you've deployed - any security breaches, attacks, etc.?

    Thanks for any and all input!
    Last edited by scion111; 2011-02-02 at 11:22.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    <OPINION>Most single user/small office lans are unlikely to suffer serious attack attempts because the potential reward is small, thus standard routers w/builtin hardware firewall along with a software firewall and anti-virus/malware products should be more than sufficient.</OPINION>
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

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  3. #3
    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    Conversely, I consider that the most important defence is the hardware firewall in your router!
    At work, we don't use a software firewall on PCs or servers, because of the sheer difficulty of centralised maintenance of all the computers. Never had any problem over the last 5 years as a result of this decision.
    Lots of antivirus, though, and any incoming viruses in emails are trapped by our anti-spam system on Exchange.
    BATcher

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