Tag: small business firewalls

Best affordable firewall for small businesses

Affordable firewalls that won’t leave you dreaming of bigger budgets

Affordable firewalls are a necessity for small businesses. Especially if they need strong network security in place fast. However, finding an affordable firewall can be tough. Not sure sure how to find SMB firewalls that give real bang for the buck?

Find the best affordable firewall you can rely on for years to come with a few options Firewalls.com recommends:

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What sets an affordable firewall apart from a cheap firewall?

Firstly, what do we mean by an affordable firewall? We mean a next generation firewall that reliably delivers high-speed performance and advanced security at a cost-efficient “pound for pound” level. Many third party authorities such as NSS Labs and Gartner measure and quantify high quality, affordable firewalls. This is often done with metrics like “Total Cost of Ownership” and “Price per Protected Mbps.”

Firewall vendors are constantly racing to extend enterprise-grade, multi-gig firewalls to smaller and smaller user bases. The Next Generation Firewall (NGFW) era has grown fully ripe. Now savvy SMBs can get even newer next-er generations of NGFWs. If they know where to look.

Fortinet 40F – Affordable firewall with jaw-dropping stats

The FortiGate 40F launched in 2020 as part of Fortinet’s new F-Series firewalls. The tiny titan FortiGate 40F can reach speeds of up to 5 Gigabits per second. That’s twice as fast as the FG-50E which costs over $50 more! And don’t forget its purpose-built processor for top-notch Secure SD-WAN capabilities.

Secure SD-WAN with FortiGate 40F

The tech specs for the FG-40F are insane for such an affordable firewall.


SonicWall TZ 350 – Affordable firewall built to stop ransomware

SonicWall launched the TZ series as NGFWs for SMBs. Now the next gen of NGFWs are sprouting up with new additions like the SonicWall SOHO 250 and SonicWall TZ 350. The SonicWall TZ350 is faster and supports more SSL VPN licenses than the TZ300.

With SonicWall Capture Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) enabled, you get a super fast cloud-based sandbox that uses AI and behavior-based scans. First, identify potential threats. Then isolate them in quarantine. Finally, detonate them before they can touch your network. This squashes the threat of ransomware right in your inbox.

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Sophos XG 106 – Affordable firewall with added on-board memory

The Sophos XG 106 is a major revision of the XG 105. The XG 106 includes upgraded onboard memory RAM. XG firewalls use an integrated Solid State Drive (SSD).

XG 106

Sophos XG firewalls are affordable, but still satisfy the cravings of network admins looking for advanced features, increased visibility & control, and synchronized real-time security.


WatchGuard T35 – Affordable firewall made to grow with you

WatchGuard T-Series Firebox appliances are built with scalability in mind. That means if your small business doesn’t stay a small business, you can easily expand your network security setup without having to rip and replace from the ground up.


The term “future-proof” is often used to describe the T-Series. WatchGuard makes it easy to upgrade existing services and add emerging tech to your current setup.


How to Choose a Cisco Meraki Firewall for your Small Business

Shopping for Cisco Meraki MX Firewalls

Cisco Meraki MX Security & SD-WAN Appliances (or as we affectionately call them: firewalls) provide Unified Threat Management for small businesses, branch offices, datacenters, and distributed enterprise environments. 100% cloud managed and filled to the brim with comprehensive security features, Cisco Meraki firewalls reduce complexity and save money by eliminating the need for multiple appliances.

Why Meraki Firewalls?

As small businesses explore digital transformation and all the advanced security and networking that it offers, automated services become more important. Cisco Meraki MX firewalls make intelligent site-to-site VPN easy with Auto VPN. Auto VPN automatically generates VPN routes using IKE/IPSec that can connect with all IPSec VPN devices and services. Automated MPLS to VPN failover in case of a connection failure is resolved in a matter of seconds, minimizing downtime over remote access.

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SD-WAN is another key aspect of digital transformation and Cisco Meraki includes SD-WAN capabilities with each firewall. Software-defined WAN lowers operational costs and improves performance of remotely-accessed resources. Policy-based routing, support for application-layer profiles, active/active VPN, and dynamic path selection ensure the apps and services your employees use most are always available.

Cisco Meraki MX firewalls include all the advanced security services you expect out of a next generation firewall: intrusion prevention powered by Cisco-developed SNORT, content filtering, anti-malware, geo-based firewalling, remote access connectivity, and advanced malware protection. Layer 7 fingerprinting allows small businesses to identify PUAs and unproductive content so that company bandwidth isn’t wasted on time-wasters like BitTorrent.

Choosing a Cisco Meraki MX Firewall

It can be a challenge to spot the difference between two similar firewalls, but the devil is always in the details. Here are a few key differentiators between Cisco Meraki firewalls to help you decide which device is right for your network.

Power of Ethernet

The Cisco Meraki MX68 includes Power-over-Ethernet capabilities. The rear of these MX firewall models feature a pair of 802.3at (PoE+) ports. With them, you get built-in power supply capabilities for tricky installations where outlets may be unavailable. These two 802.3at ports provide a total of 60W power. In other words, you can leave the AC adapters at home.

Integrated 802.11ac Wave 2 Wireless

The MX67W and MX68W provide wireless firewalling capabilities, integrating Cisco Meraki’s industry-recognized wireless technology in an SMB-friendly compact form factor. Enjoy unified central management of all network security and wireless devices.

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Meraki vMX100 Virtual Firewall

Virtual firewalls provide the benefit of simple configurations and appliance-less deployment. The Meraki vMX100 is added via Amazon Web Services or Azure and configured directly in the Meraki dashboard, just as you would manage any other MX firewall appliance. Licensing only–no on-premise equipment required!

Cisco Meraki MX64 vs MX65

At first glance, these two models look pretty similar. Both clock in at 200 Mbps of Advanced Security Throughput (when the full range of intelligent security services are operating). They also offer 100 Mbps of VPN Throughput. The MX64 can be converted to support WAN and includes 3 dedicated GbE RJ45 interfaces. Why aren’t we talking more about the MX65? Because it reached end of sale in 2019 and is no longer available. If you’re looking for something comparable – the MX68 is your best bet.

Cisco Meraki MX67 and MX68

Meraki MX67 and MX68 firewalls are designed with built-in cellular modems that simplify deployments requiring a cellular uplink backup. This kind of cellular uplink infrastructure is ideal for remote locations that rely on continuous WAN circuits. That is to say, where you need high availability and redundancy, the cellular uplink provides a valuable backup.

The MX68 includes the Power of Ethernet capabilities described in the section above as well as dual WAN interfaces and 10 LAN RJ45 interfaces. On the other hand, the MX67 includes only one dedicated WAN interface and three LAN RJ45 interfaces.

Meraki MX84, MX100, MX250, & MX450

The Cisco Meraki MX84 and above appliances pack a bit more punch behind their security performance.

    • MX84 Recommended Users & VPN Throughput: 200 users, 250 Mbps
    • MX100 Recommended Users & VPN Throughput: 500 users, 500 Mbps
    • MX250 Recommended Users & VPN Throughput: 2,000 users, 1.0 Gbps
    • MX450 Recommended Users & VPN Throughput: 10,000 users, 2.0 Gbps

In sum, it’s clear these models are designed for medium branches and enterprise networks. With top-end speeds up to 6.0 Gbps of stateful firewall inspection, the advanced security technology behind Cisco Meraki MX firewalls bring serious security and performance.

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Advanced Security Licenses and Support

Check out our Renewals & Licensing wizard to find advanced security licenses for Cisco Meraki MX firewalls like Cisco Meraki Advanced Security Licensing.


Best Small Business Firewall: A look at the top contenders for best SMB firewalls

Best Small Business Firewall, a coveted title that manufacturers are gunning to claim and users are clamoring to find the answer to. Understandably, we all want to make sure we’re getting the best of the best when it comes time to whip out the corporate card. However, this question is not as black-and-white as it is appears. Many factors play into determining the quality of a firewall and, when it comes to small businesses especially, the answer is often more dependent on the needs of the business than the hard specs of the appliance. Recently we posted a handy guide to help you choose the best small business firewall, but searchers want more specific answers.

If you came here looking for the be-all, end-all answer, the cyber security mic drop, or even a top 10 list, you won’t find it here. And chances are, if you find it somewhere else, they’re just trying to sell you something.

“Wait, isn’t Firewalls.com trying to sell me something?”


Peace of mind.

But no, seriously, we have some insight to share here.

So in the interest of conflict of interest, today’s post will showcase three of the best-selling and most sought-after small business firewalls. Is any one of them the best small business firewall? Hard to say. But we can guarantee that these three appliances are popular, get great reviews, and are repeatedly merited as the most cost-effective, comprehensive solutions to common network security issues.

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sonicwall tz400 firewall is great smb small business firewall with secure remote access and vpn tunnels

SonicWall TZ400

Greatest Strength: The TZ400 is a great option for small to medium-sized businesses that require secure remote access between multiple offices. Site-to-site VPN tunnels can accommodate 20 users per connection and perform well with Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS), SSL, and SonicWall’s patented Reassembly-Free Deep Packet Inspection (RFDPI).

Perfect For: The small business that needs to operate at higher-than-average speeds, especially over long distances.

Recommended Users: 25-35 Users

Maximum Throughput: 1.3 Gbps

Form Factor: Desktop

Price: Appliance-Only MSRP: $945.00; Firewalls.com price: $709.00 

Learn more about the SonicWall TZ400

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sophos xg 105 firewall provides throughput that outweighs its cost

Sophos XG105

Greatest Strength: Looking for on-box reporting and high speeds? The price-to-performance ratio for this XG105 is astounding. Able to accommodate up to 20 users and reach speeds of 3 Gigabytes per second, the XG105 also delights with its modest price point.

Perfect For: Businesses looking to expand a network to match their growing performance needs. The XG105 is an extremely cost-effective way to turn your average office into a robust, high-speed network.

Recommended Users: 10-20 Users

Maximum Throughput: 3 Gbps

Price: Appliance-Only MSRP: $440.00; Firewalls.com price: $396.00

Learn more about the Sophos XG105

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watchguard firebox t50 with dimension is great for cyber security reporting tools and ease of use

WatchGuard T50

Greatest Strength: The WatchGuard T-series is easy to use for beginners but has the depth of reporting that veteran sys admins crave. WatchGuard excels at visualizing data and makes actively monitoring your network a breeze. WatchGuard Dimension is out here winning awards as a reporting tool!

Perfect For: System administrators and network architects that like to take a hands-on approach to cyber security. We don’t get to say this in the info sec industry often, but you’ll have a lot of fun with this hardware.

Recommended Users: 10 – 25 Users

Maximum Throughput: 1.2 Gpbs

Form Factor: Rack Mount

Price: Appliance-Only MSRP: $2,000.00, Firewalls.com price: $1,520.00

Learn more about the WatchGuard T50

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So, what is the best small business firewall? The debate rages on.

What is the best firewall for your small business? That answer is a bit easier to parse out. Firewalls.com can work with you to ensure that you choose the best appliance to fit the unique needs and demands of your small business. You worked your fingers to the bone building an organization, a brand, and a network that is solely, undeniably yours. You deserve a solution that is solely, undeniably yours.