April 14, 2006
(25 users): $750, including one year's maintenance support
- Ease of Use:
- Value for Money:
- Overall Rating:
- Strengths: basic filter than will keep networks protected against inappropriate web surfing by users.
- Weaknesses: Very difficult to set up and configure. Documentation and support are hard to access.
- Verdict: Cost-effective web filtering solution for undemanding environments.
WebMarshal lacks documentation and an intuitive interface, which makes it very difficult to work with and configure.
The interface is set up as a tree menu in which you can add or delete users, work with configuration, and add filtering rules. We ran into problems constantly while we were configuring this product, and most of the configurations we made during testing did not work or worked incorrectly.
The product builds its database into the MSDE2000 server that is included in the installation, but it was very unclear how to update the database with current URL blacklists. This product comes with the basic features of a web filter. It filters pages containing content that would be considered inappropriate in a business environment, such as pornography, gambling and other basic categories.
Documentation for this product is very hard to find. First, customers who are using the evaluation product must fill out the online support request form to unlock the documentation and support area of the WebMarshal website. After the request is completed, users must navigate a complex maze of links to find documentation. If the user does not fill out the request form these areas remain locked and install, configuration and documentation guides are completely unattainable. After the evaluation, to receive access to documentation users must sign up for a NetIQ service plan.
Free telephone support is offered by WebMarshal, as well as an online support knowledge base and product documentation. While users need to sign up for support services after the evaluation period, the website was not clear as to whether there is an additional cost attached to these services.
Product pricing starts at $750 plus one-year maintenance support for 25 users. While this seems like a very reasonable and low price, we found that the product is in all senses, minimalist and best suited to small, non-demanding environments.