GFI WebMonitor/ISA Server
Strengths: Adds web filtering and malware protection to ISA Server
Weaknesses: Cannot stand on its own as a separate web filter
Verdict: A useful tool to add features missing from Microsoft ISA Server
GFI WebMonitor is a comprehensive monitoring tool that plugs in and complements the functionality provided by Microsoft ISA Server to enable companies to monitor and filter network users' web traffic - both browsing and file downloads - in real-time. It also enables blocking of web connections in progress as well as scanning traffic for viruses, Trojans, spyware and phishing material. With this tool, administrators can transparently and seamlessly exercise a substantial degree of control over network users' browsing and downloading habits.
It is a straightforward easy install, assuming you already have ISA Server installed. The installation of GFI WebMonitor takes a few minutes and is guided by an easy-to-follow setup wizard. It can be installed directly on the existing ISA Server, so if ISA is already running, no additional hardware is needed. Management is done via a user console application installed along with WebMonitor. This console is fairly well organised and is split into a navigation pane and a viewing pane. The navigation pane uses an intuitive tree style for simple navigation.
This product does plug right into the existing environment, if ISA is the firewall. If Microsoft ISA is not already running, this may not be the right product to choose, as it would mean the purchase of additional hardware and software to use it.
Documentation for this product is two PDF manuals. One is an installation guide that illustrates the setup wizard steps and gives configuration examples. The second is the product manual. This includes the installation guide as well as detailed product configuration information. Both of these manuals include many screenshots and examples, as well as step-by-step instructions.
GFI includes one year of support in the purchase price, with further support by contract at a cost of 20 per cent of the product base price. There is also a free support area on the website, with knowledgebase and documentation downloads.
At a price starting at about £449 for 25 seats, this product is average value for money. It is an add on for ISA Server so environments that are not using ISA have additional costs of hardware and software to buy.