SonicWall SSL-VPN 2000
Strengths: Easy to manage with many features at a low cost
Weaknesses: Nothing that we found during this group test
Verdict: For its solid performance, ease of use and good feature set, we rate this product Recommended
The SonicWall SSL-VPN 2000 focuses its feature set towards becoming more than just a virtual network, effectively turning into a virtual office for remote users. The SonicWall Virtual Office is a portal in which users have access not only to network resources such as file shares, but also to web applications, remote desktops and even Outlook Webmail, all from one central point.
We found this to be fairly simple to get up and running. Much of the configuration is done simply by navigating through the web-based GUI and entering configuration information. The tab-based organisation of the web GUI is quite intuitive. Setting up resources was also quite simple, but many of the settings require manual entry, so it does take some time to get everything going.
This box offers a good amount of flexibility for getting remote users access to the resources they need. Authentication can be based on the existing structures of Active Directory, LDAP or Radius. Portals can also be customised to fit the needs of several different groups of users.
Aside from a few very specific feature guides such as NetExtender and Virtual Assist, the documentation includes administrator, user and getting-started guides. The latter illustrates the initial deployment and configuration, while the administrator's guide provides much detail on advanced configuration and managing the appliance. The user manual focuses on using the portal and its features from the end-user perspective. All these manuals are well organised, easy to follow and provide many screenshots.
SonicWall offers 90 days of office-hour technical support with the purchase of the product. Other options can be purchased as part of a support contract, which can include 24/7 assistance as well as firmware updates. There is also a dedicated area available for users on the website, which incorporates product documentation, technical notes, FAQs, user forums and a knowledge base.
We find this product to be excellent value for money. It provides a solid feature set for a medium-sized environment without breaking the bank.