Tested: Barracuda firewall X201


In the Cloud

Following the hype, the Barracuda firewall also provides firewall management "in the cloud," so you can configure the device through the manufacturer's website. The web interface is functionally identical to the one on the firewall itself. However, administrators can manage all of their firewalls in a single interface in the Barracuda cloud. A web security module which, for example, outsources malware scans to the Barracuda site is available for an extra charge.

Under the hood of the router is a hardened Linux system; it runs on an Atom processor and uses an Intel SSD for data storage. Software by Austria's Phion, which was acquired by Barracuda, converts the packet filter into an application-level firewall.

In a corporate environment, you can integrate the Barracuda firewall by implementing a number of authentication types and protocols, including Active Directory, NTLM, CHAP, RADIUS, and LDAP(S). On the firewall itself, administrators can install their own certificates.

In terms of cost, the X200 firewall will set you back about US$ 1,499. Energize updates for it cost US$ 360 a year. Instant Replacement and Premium Support are available for US$ 350 a year, and the web security package costs US$ 250. The prices of the larger models start at US$ 1,999 (X300) and range up to US$ 8,999 (X600). Support packages for the larger models are also more costly than for the smaller models.


The Barracuda firewall rounds out the company's NG firewall offerings. The new device is feature-rich and includes many traditional router functions, such as VPNs, load balancing, and traffic shaping. As firewalls, the Barracuda devices go beyond pure packet filtering and can act as application-level firewalls, blocking data packets based on their content.

The new bridge mode for configuring the firewalls, however, confuses rather than helps. Additionally, restricting a firewall's functionality if it is not activated online is something the manufacturer would be better off discontinuing.

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