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Compare Cisco ASA Firewall vs. Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall

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Comparison Summary
Question: How does Cisco's ASA firewall compare with the Firepower NGFW?
Answer: It is easy to integrate Cisco ASA with other Cisco products and also other NAC solutions. When you understand the Cisco ecosystem, it is very simple to handle. This solution has traffic inspection and the Firepower engine which provides good application visibility and control. Cisco ASA gives you full details, traffic monitoring, and threat monitoring. Cisco ASA has very solid encryption and multi-factor authentication. This solution is a great option to enable work-from-home options seamlessly. The front-end configuration with Cisco ASA can be tough, though - there are too many steps in this process. It would also be better if there was a clear view of the integrations and the easiest way to complete them. In inexperienced hands, the Cisco ASA interface can be pretty daunting. An improved GUI would make this product much more user-friendly and competitive with other products. This solution can also be very expensive. In the security technology space, Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is one of the fastest, if not the fastest. This gives us confidence in knowing that the moment an attack comes online, we will be protected immediately. We also like the intrusion policy that Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall provides. We are able to see active users vs. inactive users, which has helped increase productivity through visibility. We get proactive notifications if there are issues with our throughput. If you know your way around the Cisco ecosystem, things can be pretty simple to set up and manage. Deployment with Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall takes too long, though. Other products are much faster. Additionally, when you have too many IPS rules, it slows down and impacts overall performance. Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall does not have email security, and this is an important function we would like to see added with future upgrades. Conclusion These are both amazing products and in some situations, we have these two solutions working together. Overall, we found Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall to have better flexibility and more granular access control. Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall has some great micro-segmentations functionalities with regard to east-west and north-south traffic control, which is exactly what we wanted.
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Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco ASA Firewall vs. Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall and other solutions. Updated: November 2021.
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Quotes From Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:

Pros
"If we look at the Cisco ASA without Firepower, then one of the most valuable features is the URL filtering.""We are mostly using it for remote access, so the remote access feature is the most valuable, but all other features are also needed and required. It is also a very straightforward and reliable solution.""The traffic inspection and the Firepower engine are the most valuable features. It gives you full details, application details, traffic monitoring, and the threats. It gives you all the containers the user is using, especially at the application level. The solution also provides application visibility and control.""Cisco ASA provides us with very good application visibility and control.""Even in very big environments, Cisco comes in handy with configuration and offers reliability when it comes to managing multiple items on one platform.""The most valuable feature is the access control list (ACL).""The benefits we see from the ASA are connected to teleworking as well as, of course, having the basic functionality of a firewall in place and the prevention of attacks.""The most valuable feature is that the encryption is solid."

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"One of the nice things about Firepower is that you can set it to discover the environment. If that is happening, then Firepower is learning about every device, software operating system, and application running inside or across your environment. Then, you can leverage the discovery intelligence to get Firepower to select the most appropriate intrusion prevention rules to use for your environment rather than picking one of the base policies that might have 50,000 IPS rules in it, which can put a lot of overhead on your firewall. If you choose the recommendations, as long as you update them regularly, you might be able to get your rule set down to only 1,000 or 1,500, which is a significant reduction in a base rule set. This means that the firewall will give you better performance because there are less rules being checked unnecessarily. That is really useful.""The feature set is fine and is rarely a problem.""We have not had to deal with stability issues.""Its Snort 3 IPS has better flexibility as far as being able to write rules. This gives me better granularity.""When it comes to the integration among Cisco tools, we find it easy. It's a very practical integration with other components as well.""There are no issues that we are aware of. It does its job silently in the background.""The dashboard is the most important thing. It provides good visibility and makes management easy. Firepower also provides us with good application visibility and control.""I have access to the web version of Cisco Talos to see the reputation of IP addresses. I find this very helpful. It provides important information for my company to obtain the reputation of IP addresses. The information in Talos is quite complete."

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Cons
"Cisco ASA is not a next-generation firewall product.""The stability is not the best.""Cisco provides us with application visibility and control, although it's not a complete solution compared to other vendors. Cisco needs to work on the application behavior side of things, in particular when it comes to the behavior of SSL traffic.""Cisco missed the mark with all the configuration steps. They are a pain and, when doing them, it looks as if we're using a very old technology — yet the technology itself is not old, it's very good. But the front-end configuration is very tough.""It lacks management. For me, it still doesn't have a proper management tool or GUI for configuration, logging, and visualization. Its management is not that easy. It is also not very flexible and easy to configure. They used to have a product called CSM, but it is no longer being developed. FortiGate is better than this solution in terms of GUI, flexibility, and user-friendliness.""It can probably provide a holistic view of different appliances because many customers do not have only one brand, besides the traditional SNMP protocols, to cover all their devices. There are some specific requirements in terms of configurations or actions that sometimes have to be done in a very manual way because of the different versions or brands in a customer's infrastructure. It could also have some additional analytics capabilities. It has some very interesting ways to monitor the traffic and identify false positives from the architecture and the environment. It would be good if there is a way to patch with some other industry-specific solutions and synchronize some of the information, such as what other customers experience in their operations and probably share some additional information that could be leveraged or shared among the industry. Such information would be something interesting to see. It could have AI capabilities related to how the appliances could benefit from learning the current environment and different exposures.""On firewall features, Fortinet is better. Cisco needs to become more competitive and add more features or meet Fortinet's offering.""We don't have any serious problems. The firewall models that we have are quite legacy, and they have slower performance. We are currently investigating the possibility of migrating to next-generation firewalls."

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"When you make any changes, irrespective of whether they are big or small, Firepower takes too much time. It is very time-consuming. Even for small changes, you have to wait for 60 seconds or maybe more, which is not good. Similarly, when you have many IPS rules and policies, it slows down, and there is an impact on its performance.""Report generation is an area that should be improved.""The central management tool is not comfortable to use. You need to have a specific skill set. This is an important improvement for management because I would like to log into Firepower, see the dashboard, and generate a real-time report, then I question my team.""An area of improvement for this solution is the console visualization.""It would be great if some of the load times were faster.""On the VPN side, Firepower could be better. It needs more monitoring on VPNs. Right now, it's not that good. You can set up a VPN in Firepower, but you can't monitor it.""I would like it to have faster deployment times. A typical deployment could take two to three minutes. Sometimes, it depends on the situation. It is better than it was in the past, but it could always use improvement.""We cannot have virtual domains, which we can create with FortiGate. This is something they should add in the future. Additionally, there is a connection limit and the FMC could improve."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
"Its price is moderate. It is not too expensive.""We're using the smart license for this firewall. The models that we have require licensing for remote access.""The price is fair. It's not the cheapest, but it's not bad.""When we bought it, it was really expensive. I'm not aware of the current pricing. We had problems with licensing. After our IPS subscription ended, we couldn't renew it because Cisco was moving to the next-generation firewall platform. So, they didn't provide us with the new license.""If we compare it with FortiGate and the co-existing ASA, FortiGate is better in price.""They seem to be at the top end in terms of pricing, but they are worth the price. They are probably a little bit lower than Palo Alto. If the customers are relying on Cisco products and they are thinking more in terms of scaling to another layer in a year, it is pretty much in a good price range.""There is room for improvement in the pricing when compared to the market. Although, when you compare the benefits of support from Cisco, you can adjust the value and it becomes comparable, because you usually need very good support. So you gain value there with this device.""I just bought it off the shelf, and I'm using it with my previous one, so I have not spent that much."

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"Cisco pricing is premium. However, they gave us a 50 to 60 percent discount.""The price is comparable.""When we purchased the firewall, we had to take the security license for IPS, malware protection, and VPN. If we are using high availability, we have to take a license for that. We also have to pay for hardware support and technical support. Its licensing is on a yearly basis.""I like the Smart Licensing, because it is more dynamic and easier to keep track of where you are at. If we have a high availability firewall pair and they are deployed in active/standby rather than active/active, I would expect that we would only pay for one set of licenses because you are using only one firewall at any one time. The other is there just for resiliency. The licensing, from a Firepower perspective, still requires you to have two licenses, even if the firewalls are in active/standby, which means that you pay for the two licenses, even though you might only be using one firewall any one time. This is probably not the best way to do it and doesn't represent the best value for money. This could be looked at to see if it could be done in a fairer way.""Cisco, as we all know, is expensive, but for the money you are paying, you know that you are also getting top-notch documentation as well as support if needed.""It definitely competes with the other vendors in the market.""The price of Firepower is not bad compared to other products.""This product is expensive."

More Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall Pricing and Cost Advice »

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Questions from the Community
Top Answer:  When you compare these firewalls you can identify them with different features, advantages, practices and usage at large. In my opinion, Fortinet would be the best option and l use… more »
Top Answer: One of our favorite things about Fortinet Fortigate is that you can deploy on the cloud or on premises. Fortinet Fortigate is very stable, reliable, and consistent. We like that we can manage the… more »
Top Answer: It is easy to integrate Cisco ASA with other Cisco products and also other NAC solutions. When you understand the Cisco ecosystem, it is very simple to handle. This solution has traffic inspection and… more »
Top Answer:  The Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is a very powerful and very complex piece of anti-viral software. When one considers that fact, it is all the more impressive that the setup is a fairly… more »
Top Answer: Pick a product model for both vendors: Cisco & Palo Alto (refer to technical data sheets and whitepapers --)  See the key differences on your target or specific needs). Practical evaluation by a… more »
Top Answer: Cisco Firepower is NGFW, and ASA is the older Cisco firewall.
Ranking
6th
out of 47 in Firewalls
Views
61,178
Comparisons
45,447
Reviews
58
Average Words per Review
571
Rating
8.0
4th
out of 47 in Firewalls
Views
43,244
Comparisons
30,805
Reviews
39
Average Words per Review
1,045
Rating
8.4
Comparisons
Also Known As
Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) Firewall, Cisco ASA NGFW, Cisco ASA, Adaptive Security Appliance, ASA, Cisco Sourcefire Firewalls, Cisco ASAv
Cisco Firepower NGFW, Cisco Firepower Next-Generation Firewall, FirePOWER, Cisco NGFWv
Learn More
Overview

Cisco ASA firewalls deliver enterprise-class firewall functionality with highly scalable and flexible VPN capabilities to meet diverse needs, from small/branch offices to high performance data centers and service providers. Available in a wide range of models, Cisco ASA can be deployed as a physical or virtual appliance. Flexible VPN capabilities include support for remote access, site-to-site, and clientless VPN. Also, select appliances support clustering for increased performance, VPN load balancing to optimize available resources, advanced high availability configurations, and more.

Cisco ASAv is the virtualized version of the Cisco ASA firewall. Widely deployed in leading private and public clouds, Cisco ASAv is ideal for remote worker and multi-tenant environments. The solution scales up/down to meet performance requirements and high availability provides resilience. Also, Cisco ASAv can deliver micro-segmentation to protect east-west network traffic.

Cisco firewalls provide consistent security policies, enforcement, and protection across all your environments. Unified management for Cisco ASA and FTD/NGFW physical and virtual firewalls is delivered by Cisco Defense Orchestrator (CDO), with cloud logging also available. And with Cisco SecureX included with every Cisco firewall, you gain a cloud-native platform experience that enables greater simplicity, visibility, and efficiency.

Learn more about Cisco’s firewall solutions, including virtual appliances for public and private cloud.

Cisco NGFW firewalls deliver advanced threat defense capabilities to meet diverse needs, from
small/branch offices to high performance data centers and service providers. Available in a wide
range of models, Cisco NGFW can be deployed as a physical or virtual appliance. Advanced threat
defense capabilities include Next-generation IPS (NGIPS), Security Intelligence (SI), Advanced
Malware Protection (AMP), URL filtering, Application Visibility and Control (AVC), and flexible VPN
features. Inspect encrypted traffic and enjoy automated risk ranking and impact flags to reduce event
volume so you can quickly prioritize threats. Cisco NGFW firewalls are also available with clustering
for increased performance, high availability configurations, and more.
Cisco Firepower NGFWv is the virtualized version of Cisco's Firepower NGFW firewall. Widely
deployed in leading private and public clouds, Cisco NGFWv automatically scales up/down to meet
the needs of dynamic cloud environments and high availability provides resilience. Also, Cisco NGFWv
can deliver micro-segmentation to protect east-west network traffic.
Cisco firewalls provide consistent security policies, enforcement, and protection across all your
environments. Unified management for Cisco ASA and FTD/NGFW physical and virtual firewalls is
delivered by Cisco Defense Orchestrator (CDO), with cloud logging also available. And with Cisco
SecureX included with every Cisco firewall, you gain a cloud-native platform experience that enables
greater simplicity, visibility, and efficiency.
Learn more about Cisco’s firewall solutions, including virtual appliances for public and private cloud.

Offer
Learn more about Cisco ASA Firewall
Learn more about Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall
Sample Customers
There are more than one million Adaptive Security Appliances deployed globally. Top customers include First American Financial Corp., Genzyme, Frankfurt Airport, Hansgrohe SE, Rio Olympics, The French Laundry, Rackspace, and City of Tomorrow.
Rackspace, The French Laundry, Downer Group, Lewisville School District, Shawnee Mission School District, Lower Austria Firefighters Administration, Oxford Hospital, SugarCreek, Westfield
Top Industries
REVIEWERS
Financial Services Firm17%
Comms Service Provider13%
Manufacturing Company10%
University6%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider35%
Computer Software Company21%
Government5%
Educational Organization4%
REVIEWERS
Comms Service Provider22%
Financial Services Firm16%
Manufacturing Company8%
Non Profit8%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider32%
Computer Software Company21%
Government7%
Manufacturing Company4%
Company Size
REVIEWERS
Small Business35%
Midsize Enterprise26%
Large Enterprise39%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business28%
Midsize Enterprise16%
Large Enterprise56%
REVIEWERS
Small Business43%
Midsize Enterprise28%
Large Enterprise29%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business21%
Midsize Enterprise13%
Large Enterprise66%
Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco ASA Firewall vs. Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall and other solutions. Updated: November 2021.
553,954 professionals have used our research since 2012.

Cisco ASA Firewall is ranked 6th in Firewalls with 62 reviews while Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is ranked 4th in Firewalls with 41 reviews. Cisco ASA Firewall is rated 8.0, while Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is rated 8.4. The top reviewer of Cisco ASA Firewall writes "Robust solution that integrates well with both Cisco products and products from other vendors". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall writes "The ability to implement dynamic policies for dynamic environments is important, given the fluidity in the world of security". Cisco ASA Firewall is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate, Palo Alto Networks WildFire, Meraki MX, Juniper SRX and SonicWall TZ, whereas Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall is most compared with Fortinet FortiGate, Palo Alto Networks WildFire, Meraki MX, Azure Firewall and Palo Alto Networks NG Firewalls. See our Cisco ASA Firewall vs. Cisco Firepower NGFW Firewall report.

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