Cloud News

CRN’s 2021 Products Of The Year

Wade Tyler Millward, Kyle Alspach

CRN staff compiled the top partner-friendly products that launched over the past year, then turned to solution providers to choose the winners.




Palo Alto Networks’ Next-Generation ML-Powered Firewalls expand protection up to the hyperscale data center, internet edge and campus segmentation deployments—and down to a desktop form factor. The PA-400 series is built for the distributed enterprise and offers up to 10X more performance with security services and decryption compared with the previous generation. The PA-400 firewall also offers easier and flexible deployment, including zero-touch provisioning to simplify rollout to branches, even at large scale. In addition, the firewall offers a quiet, compact design with multiple mounting options for a range of scenarios. Meanwhile, the PA-5450 firewall secures traffic that is nearly fully encrypted and is purpose-built to apply decryption and machine learning-powered security to stop zero days as well as known threats. The firewall offers 120-Gbps performance with security services enabled, offering 4X the performance of the previous generation.

Subcategory Winner—Technology: Cisco Umbrella

Cisco Umbrella enables securing of internet access and control of cloud app usage—across networks, remote workers and branch offices—by integrating multiple security functions into a unified cloud service. The platform brings together secure web gateway, cloud-delivered firewall, DNS-layer security, remote browser isolation and cloud access security broker capabilities to provide robust threat protection.

Finalist: Fortinet FortiGate 3500F

Designed to protect organizations with hybrid data centers, Fortinet’s recently launched FortiGate 3500F next-generation firewall offers multiple high-speed interfaces as well as high throughput and port density. Key elements include purpose-built security processors for high-performance IPS, strong SSL inspection performance and advanced threat protection capabilities.

Finalist: SonicWall NSa Firewalls

For Gen 7 of its Network Security appliance (NSa) Series, SonicWall offers strong performance and port density along with capabilities such as malware analysis, inspection of encrypted traffic and URL filtering. Additional networking features include high availability, dynamic and virtual routing, and SD-WAN.

Finalist: Sophos Firewall XGS Series

Recent updates to Sophos Firewall include the debut of new XGS Series appliances offering enhanced protection against zero-day threats. Among the key capabilities is improved TLS inspection of encrypted traffic—including native TLS 1.3 support—offering a 5X boost on speed.

Finalist: Zscaler ZPA Private Service Edge

Zscaler ZPA Private Service Edge was recently unveiled to securely broker users to private applications, removing the need for on-premises network segmentation. The solution provides local brokering between on-prem users and on-prem apps, speeding up the experience for users while lowering complexity and risk.

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