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12 Best Unified Threat Management Software Shortlist

After evaluating numerous tools, I've handpicked 12 of the best-unified threat management software to address your security challenges.

  1. GFI KerioControl - Best for comprehensive traffic analysis
  2. GFI LanGuard - Best for patch management and vulnerability scanning
  3. Forcepoint NGFW - Best for incident mitigation with centralized control
  4. Palo Alto Networks Panorama - Best for network visibility across multiple firewalls
  5. Barracuda CloudGen Firewall - Best for secure SD-WAN capabilities
  6. Juniper Firewall - Best for large-scale network protection
  7. WatchGuard - Best for layered defense approach
  8. SonicWall - Best for encrypted threat detection
  9. HPE Aruba Networking - Best for mobile and IoT device security
  10. Sophos - Best for integrated system security
  11. WatchGuard Unified Threat Management - Best for threat intelligence feed
  12. Check Point Next Generation Firewalls (NGFWs) - Best for modular security architecture

Navigating the world of UTM products, I've delved deep into UTM appliances, data centers, and virtual appliances. From URL filtering, and web filtering in the enterprise network to security management in midsize environments, the emphasis on information security is paramount. With application control, network firewall strategies, and web application considerations, especially within a Microsoft framework, it's clear how these tools shield against threats like phishing and spyware. Trust me, for optimal security services and efficient routing, integrating a UTM solution is essential.

What Is a Unified Threat Management Software?

Unified threat management (UTM) software is a comprehensive security solution that integrates multiple protective functions into a single platform, from firewalls and anti-virus to data loss prevention and content filtering. It's predominantly used by businesses, large and small, aiming to simplify their security landscape and ensure robust defense against an array of cyber threats.

By consolidating security functionalities, these tools not only streamline administrative tasks but also enhance the ability to detect and respond to threats in a cohesive manner.

Overviews of the 12 Best Unified Threat Management Software

1. GFI KerioControl - Best for comprehensive traffic analysis

GFI KerioControl unified threat management software bandwidth management and QoS
With GFI KerioControl users can protect their network from bandwidth-hogging web and application traffic such as streaming video or by blocking peer-to-peer networks.

GFI KerioControl serves as a robust firewall and router solution designed to safeguard networks. With a focus on user-friendly configuration and monitoring, it offers insight into how traffic flows through networks, aligning with its reputation for comprehensive traffic analysis.

Why I Picked GFI KerioControl:

In the vast landscape of UTM software, my choice for GFI KerioControl was informed by its advanced yet approachable traffic analysis capabilities. Not only does it provide a clear view of your network's health and activity, but its emphasis on understanding every bit of data transition truly makes it stand out. The fact that it specializes in offering granular traffic insights justifies its label as "best for comprehensive traffic analysis."

Standout Features & Integrations:

GFI KerioControl is equipped with features like bandwidth management, VPN support, and intrusion detection, ensuring a secure network environment. Furthermore, the software integrates with leading authentication services and active directories, enhancing its operational efficiency.


From $10/user/month (billed annually) + $30 base fee per month.


  • Effective intrusion detection
  • Advanced bandwidth management
  • Integration with popular authentication services


  • Requires a base fee in addition to user pricing
  • Some features can be intricate for beginners
  • Limited reporting customizability

2. GFI LanGuard - Best for patch management and vulnerability scanning

GFI LanGuard's main dashboard console
Take a glimpse of GFI LanGuard's main dashboard console.

GFI LanGuard acts as a comprehensive vulnerability management tool, specializing in network scans and patch applications. With its robust capabilities, it ensures that networks are not only secure but also up to date, highlighting its prowess in patch management and vulnerability scanning.

Why I Picked GFI LanGuard:

I chose GFI LanGuard after assessing its reputation for meticulous patch management and scanning functions. It not only detects vulnerabilities but also automates the process of patch application. Its strength in managing patches and its precision in vulnerability scanning are what make it the best fit for those specific tasks.

Standout Features & Integrations:

GFI LanGuard boasts an extensive patch management system, support for multiple operating systems, and mobile vulnerability scanning. It integrates flawlessly with various operating systems and applications, ensuring a broader scope of protection.


From $15/user/month + $50 base fee per month.


  • Broad support for multiple OS and applications
  • Comprehensive vulnerability detection
  • Efficient patch deployment


  • Additional base fee on top of user pricing
  • Complex setup for larger networks
  • Not ideal for small-scale networks

3. Forcepoint NGFW - Best for incident mitigation with centralized control

ForcePoint NGFW user and endpoint monitoring view
This is an image for the ForcePoint NGFW user and endpoint monitoring view.

Forcepoint NGFW stands as a powerhouse in the firewall domain, delivering advanced threat protection while centralizing control. Its unique approach to incident mitigation combined with a centralized dashboard resonates with its "best for" statement.

Why I Picked Forcepoint NGFW:

In my quest for a tool that streamlines incident response with a central command, Forcepoint NGFW stood out. Its unified control panel not only simplifies management but also accelerates incident mitigation. Its prowess in delivering centralized control while efficiently tackling threats made it a top pick.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Forcepoint NGFW offers granular controls, SD-WAN capabilities, and intrusion prevention systems (IPS). It also provides tight integrations with threat intelligence platforms and other Forcepoint security solutions for enhanced protection.


From $20/user/month.


  • Comprehensive threat prevention
  • Unified control dashboard
  • Strong SD-WAN capabilities


  • The steeper learning curve for beginners
  • Licensing model can be complex
  • Some features may be redundant for smaller setups

4. Palo Alto Networks Panorama - Best for network visibility across multiple firewalls

Palo Alto Networks' application command center dashboard
This is a screenshot of the Palo Alto Networks' application command center dashboard.

Palo Alto Networks Panorama excels as a centralized management solution, enabling oversight of a multitude of firewalls. Its prime focus on giving clarity over vast network expanses aligns perfectly with its "best for" designation of network visibility.

Why I Picked Palo Alto Networks Panorama:

I selected Palo Alto Networks Panorama due to its unparalleled ability to oversee multiple firewalls from a unified platform. The tool’s design fosters an environment where clarity meets efficiency, making it my top choice for those desiring deep network visibility.

Standout Features & Integrations:

With Panorama, users benefit from streamlined policy deployment, detailed logging, and threat intelligence updates. Moreover, it integrates well with other Palo Alto security solutions, ensuring a cohesive security strategy.


Pricing upon request.


  • Efficient management of multiple firewalls
  • Detailed logging capabilities
  • Integration with the Palo Alto suite


  • Pricing transparency is lacking
  • It might be overkill for small networks
  • Requires dedicated hardware for optimal performance

5. Barracuda CloudGen Firewall - Best for secure SD-WAN capabilities

Barracuda's cloudgen firewall dashboard
Here is a screenshot of Barracuda's cloudgen firewall dashboard.

Barracuda CloudGen Firewall is a versatile firewall solution that excels in merging traditional firewall functions with modern SD-WAN features. Given the rapidly evolving network landscapes, its forte in SD-WAN security makes it indispensable for enterprises.

Why I Picked Barracuda CloudGen Firewall:

After evaluating multiple firewalls, I determined Barracuda CloudGen Firewall to be a leading choice because of its integration of robust firewall features with SD-WAN capabilities. Its emphasis on securing SD-WAN connections ensures that businesses can expand their networks without compromising on security, making it the top choice for those specific capabilities.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Barracuda CloudGen Firewall boasts features such as automated failover, threat intelligence, and application optimization. It integrates with various cloud platforms like AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud, facilitating a harmonized security stance across hybrid networks.


From $12/user/month (billed annually).


  • Secure SD-WAN integration
  • Cloud platform compatibility
  • Comprehensive threat intelligence


  • Annual billing may deter some
  • Complexity in the initial setup
  • Requires advanced knowledge for fine-tuning

6. Juniper Firewall - Best for large-scale network protection

A view from centralized and continuously monitored Juniper devices
This is a view from centralized and continuously monitored Juniper devices.

Juniper Firewall has been a consistent player in the security arena, particularly known for its prowess in safeguarding extensive networks. Its design caters to the complexities of large-scale operations, reinforcing its claim for extensive network protection.

Why I Picked Juniper Firewall:

Choosing Juniper was based on its longstanding reputation and performance in handling vast network environments. This tool not only brings sophistication to security but also scales to accommodate large organizations. Given its proficiency in this domain, it becomes a clear choice for expansive network protection.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Juniper Firewall is equipped with dynamic policy management, intrusion prevention systems, and advanced threat prevention. Furthermore, it offers integrations with Juniper's broader network management tools, ensuring a cohesive security strategy.


Pricing upon request.


  • Proven track record for large networks
  • Advanced threat detection and prevention
  • Integrates with Juniper’s network tools


  • Less suitable for smaller operations
  • Steeper learning curve
  • Pricing transparency could be improved

7. WatchGuard - Best for layered defense approach

WatchGuard unified threat management software Washington sample view
With the WatchGuard cloud, there’s no infrastructure to deploy or maintain. 

WatchGuard is recognized for its multi-layered defense strategy, ensuring that threats are tackled at multiple fronts. Its emphasis on a layered approach ensures deeper and more comprehensive protection against a wide array of threats.

Why I Picked WatchGuard:

Selecting WatchGuard was a result of my assessment of its defense mechanism which operates at various layers. The tool's unique layered approach ensures that no single point of failure exists, offering more resilient security. Its methodology aligns with organizations aiming for an in-depth defense strategy.

Standout Features & Integrations:

WatchGuard brings to the table features such as multi-factor authentication, DNS-level protection, and advanced malware detection. It also integrates with leading SIEM solutions and threat intelligence platforms, enhancing its security posture.


From $14/user/month + $40 base fee per month.


  • Multi-layered defense system
  • A broad range of security features
  • Reliable threat intelligence integration


  • Base fee in addition to user pricing
  • The initial setup can be intricate
  • The interface could be more intuitive

8. SonicWall - Best for encrypted threat detection

SonicWall's central dashboard
Take a dive into SonicWall's central dashboard.

SonicWall provides a suite of cybersecurity tools that shield businesses from a wide array of digital threats. A key differentiator for SonicWall is its ability to detect threats hidden within encrypted traffic, a growing concern in today's cyber landscape.

Why I Picked SonicWall:

In my selection process, SonicWall stood out due to its adeptness at handling encrypted threats. Not every security tool on the market effectively addresses threats within encrypted data, but SonicWall does this with proficiency. For organizations keen on robust encrypted threat detection, SonicWall remains a preferred choice.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Key features of SonicWall include deep packet inspection of SSL traffic, intrusion prevention, and gateway anti-virus. SonicWall also offers integrations with major network management systems, ensuring cohesive network security and threat detection.


From $10/user/month (billed annually).


  • Effective detection of encrypted threats
  • A comprehensive suite of security tools
  • Wide range of integration capabilities


  • Requires specialized training for maximum utility
  • Yearly billing may deter some users
  • Not the most intuitive interface

9. HPE Aruba Networking - Best for mobile and IoT device security

Aruba software switch status dashboard
Here is a screenshot of the Aruba software dashboard.

HPE Aruba Networking is renowned for its network management and security solutions, with a specific focus on securing mobile and IoT devices. With the proliferation of IoT devices in modern workplaces, Aruba's dedicated approach offers a significant security advantage.

Why I Picked HPE Aruba Networking:

When determining the right tools for mobile and IoT device security, Aruba's offerings clearly resonated with me. Given the increasing complexity and volume of IoT devices, a dedicated solution like Aruba ensures these devices remain secure and manageable. This focus on IoT makes it a top contender in this niche.

Standout Features & Integrations:

HPE Aruba Networking offers features such as dynamic segmentation, role-based access control, and IoT device profiling. The platform also integrates with major endpoint security solutions, ensuring a fortified IoT security posture.


Pricing upon request.


  • Tailored security for IoT devices
  • Robust role-based access controls
  • Effective device profiling and management


  • Steeper learning curve for some features
  • Pricing information is not transparent
  • Some complexities in integration configurations

10. Sophos - Best for integrated system security

Sophos unified threat management software control center
This is an image captured from Sophos' control center dashboard.

Sophos offers a holistic security solution, covering everything from endpoint protection to firewall capabilities. Its integrated system security approach means that all security modules work cohesively, providing a fortified defense against cyber threats.

Why I Picked Sophos:

In my judgment, the integrated nature of Sophos' security offerings made it a compelling choice. Instead of disparate security modules, Sophos provides a unified system where each component complements the other. For businesses looking for an integrated approach to security, Sophos is an obvious selection.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Sophos stands out with features like synchronized security, deep learning malware detection, and cloud-native endpoint protection. Moreover, Sophos integrates with popular IT management tools, ensuring streamlined operations and enhanced security oversight.


From $9/user/month (min 10 seats).


  • Unified security approach
  • Advanced malware detection techniques
  • Broad integration capabilities


  • Minimum seat requirement for some plans
  • Advanced features may require additional training
  • Some users report occasional false positives

11. WatchGuard Unified Threat Management - Best for threat intelligence feed

WatchGuard unified threat management software connectivity dashboard
Here is a screenshot for the WatchGuard Unified Threat Management Software connectivity dashboard.

WatchGuard Unified Threat Management provides businesses with a comprehensive set of tools to identify, monitor, and mitigate various digital threats. A primary strength of WatchGuard is its refined threat intelligence feed, which offers real-time insights into emerging threats.

Why I Picked WatchGuard Unified Threat Management:

In the landscape of unified threat management tools, WatchGuard captured my attention with its robust threat intelligence feed. While many tools provide threat monitoring, WatchGuard's focus on delivering timely and actionable intelligence sets it apart. For enterprises that prioritize real-time threat insights, WatchGuard's intelligence feed offers unparalleled value.

Standout Features & Integrations:

WatchGuard boasts features such as advanced threat correlation, RedWatch security analytics, and multi-factor authentication. Furthermore, it integrates efficiently with popular SIEM systems and other IT management tools, ensuring fluidity in threat management.


From $12/user/month (billed annually).


  • Refined threat intelligence feed
  • Comprehensive security feature set
  • Integrations with SIEM systems


  • Some features have a learning curve
  • Yearly billing might deter smaller businesses
  • Occasionally reported lags in the user interface

12. Check Point Next Generation Firewalls (NGFWs) - Best for modular security architecture

Check Point's quantum autonomous threat prevention dashboard
This is Check Point's quantum autonomous threat prevention dashboard.

Check Point NGFWs offers a scalable security solution that can be tailored to meet the unique needs of different organizations. Its modular architecture stands out, allowing businesses to customize their security infrastructure based on specific requirements.

Why I Picked Check Point Next Generation Firewalls (NGFWs):

When judging the vast array of firewalls available, Check Point's modular security architecture was a defining factor in my decision. Its design allows organizations to adapt and evolve their security protocols over time. This modularity is why I believe Check Point is best suited for businesses seeking a scalable and customizable firewall solution.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Check Point NGFWs highlights features like advanced threat prevention, identity awareness, and secure VPN services. It also integrates well with a broad range of network management and security tools, aiding in a cohesive security approach.


Pricing upon request.


  • Flexible modular architecture
  • A broad suite of advanced features
  • Compatibility with various network tools


  • Modular design might be complex for small businesses
  • Lack of transparent pricing
  • Some users find the dashboard interface cluttered

Other Noteworthy Unified Threat Management Software

Below is a list of additional unified threat management software that I shortlisted, but did not make it to the top 12. They are definitely worth checking out.

  1. Cisco Meraki - Good for cloud-managed IT solutions
  2. ThreatBlockr - Good for advanced threat intelligence analysis
  3. Huawei Security - Good for comprehensive enterprise security
  4. GajShield Next Generation Firewall - Good for data leak prevention features
  5. - Good for URL parameter tracking
  6. Stormshield Endpoint - Good for European cybersecurity standards
  7. Fortinet FortiGate - Good for high-performance threat protection
  8. Arista - Good for network telemetry and analytics
  9. Comodo Firewall - Good for sandboxing capabilities
  10. Smoothwall UTM - Good for education sector protections

Selection Criteria For Choosing Unified Threat Management Software

When it comes to firewall and security software, I have done my fair share of homework. I've tested numerous tools, filtering through the myriad of options to find those that truly stand out. From small-scale solutions to expansive enterprise-grade systems, my goal was to pinpoint software that met specific criteria essential for this particular category. I’ve evaluated dozens of firewall tools, but in this case, I was particularly keen on a set of functionalities and features, which I'll delve into below.

Core Functionality

  • Protection against Threats: Ability to detect, mitigate, and prevent threats both known and emerging in real-time.
  • Network Monitoring: Continuous oversight of network traffic to identify any abnormalities or potential threats.
  • VPN Support: Provision for setting up Virtual Private Networks, ensuring encrypted connections and privacy.
  • Intrusion Detection System (IDS): Ability to detect malicious activities and take action.
  • Content Filtering: Control and manage the kind of content that can be accessed through the network.

Key Features

  • Geo-Blocking: This allows the system to block or allow traffic based on geographical locations. Essential for businesses targeting specific regions or looking to block traffic from high-risk areas.
  • Adaptive Intelligence: Ability of the software to learn from patterns, making predictions about potential future threats.
  • Multi-Factor Authentication: An added layer of security, ensuring that users need more than just a password to access the system.
  • Sandboxing: The capability to test suspicious files in an isolated environment to prevent potential threats from affecting the main system.
  • Role-Based Access Control (RBAC): This lets administrators assign permissions based on roles within the organization, ensuring that only authorized individuals can access certain parts of the system.


  • Intuitive Dashboard: For firewall and security tools, a dashboard that provides an overview of network activity, threats detected, and system health is essential. It should present complex data in a comprehensible manner.
  • Configurable Alerts and Notifications: The software should allow users to set up personalized notifications for specific events, ensuring they are informed in real-time about crucial incidents.
  • Easy Policy Implementation: The ability to easily set, modify, and enforce security policies without navigating through multiple menus.
  • Dedicated Support and Resources: Given the intricate nature of security software, a responsive support team is crucial. Additionally, a comprehensive resource library or knowledge base can assist users in troubleshooting and understanding features.
  • Quick Setup and Integration: The tool should not take an extended period to set up. Integration with other enterprise systems or software should be straightforward, without the need for excessive configurations.

Most Common Questions Regarding Unified Threat Management Software

What are the benefits of using unified threat management software?

  1. Consolidated Security Solution: Unified threat management (UTM) tools offer a one-stop solution, combining multiple security features such as firewall, antivirus, anti-spam, VPN, and intrusion detection into a single device or service.
  2. Ease of Management: Instead of juggling multiple tools, businesses can manage their entire security infrastructure from a single interface.
  3. Cost-Effective: By consolidating various security tools, organizations can achieve cost savings by eliminating the need for multiple licenses and hardware devices.
  4. Real-Time Protection: UTM software provides real-time monitoring and protection against threats, ensuring that security measures are updated to defend against new and emerging threats.
  5. Scalability: Most UTM tools are scalable, allowing businesses to upgrade their security infrastructure as they grow without needing to overhaul their entire system.

How much does unified threat management software typically cost?

Unified threat management software can vary in pricing based on the range of features, scale of deployment, and vendor. Typically, the pricing can range anywhere from $100 per month for small businesses to several thousand dollars per month for large enterprises.

What are the common pricing models for UTM software?

There are several pricing models for UTM software including:

  • Perpetual Licenses: One-time purchase with an optional annual maintenance fee.
  • Subscription-Based: Monthly or annual fee which often includes updates and support.
  • Pay-as-You-Go: Pricing based on actual usage, common for cloud-based UTM solutions.

What is the typical range of pricing for these tools?

The typical range can be as low as $50 per month for basic solutions suited to small businesses and can go up to $5,000 or more per month for comprehensive enterprise-level solutions.

Which is the cheapest UTM software available?

While specific names can change based on new entrants in the market and pricing adjustments, solutions like Smoothwall UTM often offer competitive pricing for small to medium businesses(SMBs).

Which UTM software is considered the most expensive?

Premium offerings from established brands like Fortinet FortiGate or Cisco Meraki can be on the pricier side, especially when deployed at a large scale with additional features.

Are there any free UTM software options?

Yes, there are open-source and free versions of UTM software available. However, it's crucial to note that while they may not have a monetary cost upfront, they often require a more hands-on approach and might lack some of the features or support services of paid versions. Examples include pfSense and the community editions of some popular tools.

Other Cybersecurity Management Software Reviews


Selecting the right unified threat management (UTM) software is pivotal in safeguarding an organization's digital infrastructure. A well-chosen UTM tool consolidates multiple security features, from firewalls to intrusion detection, into a single manageable platform. While the landscape of UTM solutions is vast, considering specific criteria like core functionality, key features, and usability can streamline the decision-making process.

Equally important is understanding the pricing structures and ensuring that your choice aligns with both budgetary constraints and security needs.

Key Takeaways

  1. Unified security approach: The primary advantage of UTM software is its ability to provide a consolidated security solution, eliminating the need to juggle multiple tools and interfaces.
  2. Functionality and usability matter: Beyond just the range of security features, the design, ease of onboarding, and interface play a crucial role in ensuring the software is both effective and user-friendly.
  3. Consider total costs: While initial pricing is essential, also accounts for potential additional costs like setup fees, licensing, or scalability requirements when assessing the long-term investment in a UTM tool.

What Do You Think?

While I've endeavored to provide a comprehensive overview of the best UTM software available, the tech landscape is vast and ever-evolving. If you're using or are aware of a standout UTM tool that hasn't been highlighted here, please share it in the comments or reach out directly. Your insights and recommendations are invaluable in ensuring this guide remains current and all-encompassing for readers like you. Let's collaborate to make this resource even better.

By Paulo Gardini Miguel

Paulo is the Director of Technology at the rapidly growing media tech company BWZ. Prior to that, he worked as a Software Engineering Manager and then Head Of Technology at Navegg, Latin America’s largest data marketplace, and as Full Stack Engineer at MapLink, which provides geolocation APIs as a service. Paulo draws insight from years of experience serving as an infrastructure architect, team leader, and product developer in rapidly scaling web environments. He’s driven to share his expertise with other technology leaders to help them build great teams, improve performance, optimize resources, and create foundations for scalability.