Checkpoint UTM-1 2050
Strengths: Very flexible UTM with lots of capability
Weaknesses: Expensive and difficult to manage
Verdict: Serious UTM with good breadth of capability, hampered somewhat by cost and ease of use
The Checkpoint UTM-1 appliance features the standard UTM capabilities such as firewall, IPS, anti-virus and anti-spyware. However, this little bag of tricks contains some more interesting features, including a web application firewall, VoIP security, IM and P2P control, VPN and a web URL filter.
This product is fairly easy and straightforward to deploy, thanks to an intuitive initial configuration wizard. Once the device is up and running,the real fun begins. The web GUI itself does not do much at all. Instead, it is supplemented by several consoles that are all part of CheckPoint's SmartConsole. Managing this device is quite a task, not intuitive at all and actually can become quite an awkward process - once we found the right console to use, we still had to figure out how to navigate the console itself.
With all that said, this product provides a lot of flexibility. Many of the policies can be set to a high level of granularity. This appliance is also supported by CheckPoint's SmartDefense Services, which constantly provide near-real-time updates.
Documentation for this product consists of a getting started guide and a quick-start guide that work together to assist with the initial deployment of the device, as well as explain the initial configuration wizard. There is also a user guide that describes all other configuration on the box. This guide is decently set out and most of the manual is made up of clear, step-by-step procedures. Checkpoint has thrown in a few screenshots and diagrams too.
The manufacturer offers several levels of support, via subscription. These range from a basic package that includes software product upgrades, feature packs, service packs and hot fixes, to a much higher level that includes extra features such as 24/7 direct support, product review and auto renewal. The device also comes with a USB key that can be used to reset the appliance, plus a number for technical support. We thought this was rather clever and would like to see other manufacturers follow suit.
Pricing starts at £7,803. This product is at the highest end of the price spectrum. On its website, CheckPoint says that this appliance is aimed at medium-sized businesses and branch offices. We would say this may be a pricey investment. Couple that with the overhead of difficult management, and this box is not as good value as it could be.