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Xcentric is a technology company that strives to design, build and implement the best networks for accounting firms. These networks are comprised of multiple pieces of technology and we are constantly evaluating each component to ensure we are providing our clients with the best technology.  This applies to all components from the data center down to the firewall. 

For more than 10 years Xcentric has used an exceptional firewall- the Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance 5505.  This is a great device for several reasons, including Cisco’s heritage and the fact that it works and is configurable.  However, for our clients, it was lacking a few essential features at the same price point.  Our clients needed a single device with load balancing, improved throughput and antivirus support, and lower total cost of ownership. 

With that in mind, we switched to the Fortinet80C.  Here’s why:

1. Load Balancing – An increasing number of our clients are utilizing two internet connections at the same time.  One connection is used for general internet browsing and the second connection is used as a direct connection to our cloud.  We needed a firewall that could separate traffic between these two connections (i.e. ICA traffic goes here and HTTP traffic goes there).   Additionally, our clients needed the device to be able to failover all traffic to either connection automatically if the other connection were to go down.
2. Improved Throughput – Due to increasing traffic at various offices, we needed a device that was able to support increased raw throughput.
3. Antivirus Support – As a cloud provider and IT helpdesk, our clients need a simple and secure solution.  We needed a device that could provide multiple services to our client  (i.e., antivirus monitoring, application control, anti spam, content filtering, etc.).
4. Total Cost of Ownership – The Fortinet product line offers all features on all devices regardless of size.  Cisco offers fewer features on smaller devices.  This is fine for enterprise networks, but is a problem for the small office that wants a quality network.

So, as a company, we’ve decided to change our firewall standard from Cisco to Fortinet and we’ve been happy with the performance so far.

But, don’t take my word for it.  You can read more here:
Cisco: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps6120/prod_models_comparison.html
Fortinet: http://www.fortinet.com/products/fortigate/80C.html

  • Ian Carlson
    April 23, 2012

    Very interesting about the load balancing portion. Never thought about separating the ICA connection from the HTTP connection. Are a lot of your clients doing this?

    • Roy Keely
      Roy Keely
      April 23, 2012

      Clients on-boarding this year will have this as standard. Current firms who need a new firewall will likely get one as well. Need a new one?

  • yianni ellis
    yianni ellis
    April 25, 2012

    Roy is accurate. This solution is really helpful for clients that employ two connections and this two connection scenario is increasingly becoming more standard.

Yianni Ellis
by
http://xcentric.com/about/team/yianni

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