Astaro Security Gateway
Strengths: A lot of features and an intuitive web interface.
Weaknesses: Options raise the price a bit.
Verdict: A solid product and a good value, especially given the rich feature set and ease of deployment.
The Astaro Security Gateway provides a comprehensive set of protection features. Astaro attacks threats on three main security fronts: network, mail and web. This product includes a firewall, IPS, anti-malware scanning at the gateway, web content filtering, VPN, SSL remote access, email encryption, and IM/P2P filtering.
We found this tool to be quite simple to deploy and configure. The initial deployment is done by connecting the appliance to the network and then using a network-connected computer to access the web-based administration console. At first login, the administrator sets the hostname and admin passwords and then the main dashboard can be accessed. We found the dashboard and web GUI to be quite intuitive and easy to use. The initial setup of the appliance is guided by a short setup wizard from the web GUI, which guides the admin through steps to get a basic configuration up and running.
After the initial setup wizard was complete, we found it quite easy to move around the interface and finetune settings and perform advanced configuration. We also found the main dashboard provided an excellent overview of running services and what services were off or needed configuration.
Documentation for this product included a quick-start guide and a full PDF administrator guide. The quick-start guide provided the necessary steps to get the product connected to the network and gaining access to the web console. The administrator guide included all the rest of the setup and configuration information, including advanced configuration. Both guides had clear, step-by-step instructions, screen shots, examples and diagrams.
Astaro offers free access to a support knowledge base, as well as a user forum. Phone support and other assist options can be purchased as part of a support agreement. Phone options include both 12/5 and 24/7 depending on the support plan. There are also other support resources available on the website, such as how-to videos that users can access at no cost.
At a price starting at $1,275 and moving up to about $3,135 fully loaded, we find this product to be a good value for the money. The Security Gateway offers a lot of features in an easy to use and easy to manage appliance.