FortiGate 3700D: high performance firewall at low cost

Fortinet appliance promises to eliminate security bottlenecks with 160 Gbps throughput.

The new FortiGate 3700D firewall appliance.

The new FortiGate 3700D firewall appliance.

Quality, speed, or price--pick two. This is a common axiom applied to a variety of business issues, and it is generally true that you have to sacrifice one in order to have the others. Fortinet believes it may be able to deliver all three at the same time, though, with the launch of the new FortiGate 3700D firewall appliance.

For a business data center, the axiom changes some. It's more like, "You can have performance or protection: choose." Basically, anything you put in place to monitor and analyze traffic introduces lag that can impede performance. It's difficult to have both at the same time, but that has been the challenge that Fortinet and its rivals have attempted to address.

Fortinet's new FortiGate 3700D is built on a proprietary FortiASIC NP6 processor and promises to eliminate security bottlenecks. Fortinet claims the appliance delivers blazing aggregate throughput of 160Gbps.

The current generation of high-performance firewalls support data throughput of 40Gbps, but that's not good enough any more. Businesses are upgrading their datacenters to keep up with advances in networking in general. There's no point in implementing new Ethernet technologies and high-speed ports if the network backend can't keep up, and according to a recent survey conducted by Infonetics, eight in 10 organizations are looking to upgrade their datacenter for performance of 100Gbps or better.

The combination of security and performance offered by the FortiGate 3700D seems to take care of two of the three pillars of the quality-speed-price equation. So, what about cost?

Firewalls are measured as a function of dollars per throughput. In other words, how much does it cost per megabit of throughput? According to Fortinet, similar appliances from Palo Alto or Cisco cost more than $6 per megabit, while Check Point's 21700 appliance is $1.50-ish per megabit. The FortiGate 3700D, on the other hand, costs a mere 62 cents per megabit, making it a much more affordable option.

If you want a firewall appliance that offers both high performance and affordability, take a look at the FortiGate 3700D.

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