Websense vs. Baracuda web filtering comparison

1160845 pts.
Web filtering
Our Websense license needs to renewed by the middle of this month. I have been advised to switch to a Baracuda web filter solution. The rationale is that it is both a hardware and software solution that will enhance our network performance. Other advice suggests moving the Websense to its own server so it can function more efficiently. It currently shares a server with both the antivirus server and a secondary DNS server.
The  Baracuda solution is 3x the cost of the Websense renewal.
I would appreciate any insights, experiences, etc.

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Performance wise they would be identical for most part if Websense is installed on it’s own dedicated hardware (virtual or physical). Barracuda on all their platforms don’t charge per user like most other vendors to the Barracuda wins in that category. Websense is the more mature product and provides more robust reporting even though Barracuda is improving in both areas. Websense does not to have traffic be directed thru the box (passive vs being in-line) as compared to the Barracuda which is a plus for Websense.

Just realize the cost is not apples to apples. If you look at the renewal costs for Barracuda to Websense’s renewal, than you can compare appropriately. Review how much it originally cost your Websense to compare to Barracuda’s current cost to get a rough estimate.

If you do stay with Websense, put it on its own box (physical or virtual).

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  • DaveMeizlik
    The other facet to consider is that Websense has expanded beyond URL filtering into content filtering, which is important in today's dynamic Web. Most of today's most popular sites contain inappropriate and/or malicious content - posted via user generated content (UGC), and Websense provides real-time content classification and security scanning. Barracuda does not have this technology. This means Websense isn't just looking at the URL (i.e., igoogle.com), but at the entire chuck of content streaming across from that and other sites. This lets you extend your security and other policies to the dynamic Web, which nowadays is practically the entire Web. This is an extension of what you likely have today - available with a Web Security Gateway license, which can be deployed on a V-Series appliance. The appliance consolidates some of the infrastructure you're likely using today (i.e., protocol controls, policy service, etc.) Note: I'm on the product management team for Websense, so let me know if you have questions.
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  • Jwooton
    We recently switched from Websense to Barracuda. Websense has been in this realm longer I believe...but is much more expensive for us as we have many users and their per user licensing is very expensive. We calcualted a 37,000 dollar savings over 5 years by switching to Barracuda 410's. We evauluated one and it's excellent. The reporting is surprisingly better if you ask me. It also seems to be more reliable in not letting http traffic through that normally was let through by websense. We decided to go with "proxy" mode as opposed to plugging it directly in-line with the firewall. And the Barracuda integrates well with AD as did Websense. We have found thus far that Barracuda's support is quite a bit more responsive with helping to set up their product also...so that was another plus.
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  • Genderhayes
    Barracuda is that it is completely self contained so would not place any further stain on our servers. This is obviously the same with Websense as it is cloud based so nothing needs to be installed locally.
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