Review: Panda GateDefender Integra

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Review: Panda GateDefender Integra

While it does require the need for recurring subscription costs, this product has many excellent features and there is little learning curve overhead when it comes to managing.

The Panda GateDefender Integra from Panda Security has a full set of UTM features, including a firewall, which can filter on both a static network level and dynamic application level; an IPS, which scans various protocols, such as IP, ICMP, TCP and UDP; a full VPN server, which allows for SSL, IPsec, PPTP and L2TP; anti-malware filtering through its signature-based and heuristic detection technologies; a web content filter; as well as gateway anti-spam.

This product has a fairly straightforward install, which is guided by a setup wizard. This wizard helps to easily set the IP settings and deployment mode, set up an initial policy, and update the appliance so it's ready to go. After the wizard completes its task, administration and management is done using the web GUI, which is well organised and intuitive to navigate.

Policy creation is simple as well. Most policies can be configured by simply checking a box or activating a rule. The only place we saw the Panda GateDefender Integra fall really short is that the IPS rules are all set to "report only" mode by default. To turn them on is a very tedious process and leaves room for a large amount of human error.

The only documentation we received with this product was a small getting started manual, which details initial configuration and deployment of the device. While this manual states that further documentation is available on the website, in fact, when we went to the URL stated in the manual, it featured products for home users only.

Panda Security offers no-cost, eight hours a day/five days a week phone and email technical support to all customers. There is also support available on the website, which includes a knowledge base, FAQ section and product-related news.

At about US$2,000, fully licensed for one year for 50 users, this product is a fairly good value for the money. While it does require the need for recurring subscription costs, it has many excellent features and there is little learning curve overhead when it comes to managing.

For: Easy to set up and manage with many nice features. Against: All IPS rules are in "report only" mode by default. Verdict: Needs a bit of help in its documentation, but other than that, typical Panda quality and ease of use.

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