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24 x 7 Support now Available

Netgate®, the leading provider of open source security solutions and the host of the pfSense® open source firewall project is proud to announce the availability of professional 24×7 support for pfSense software.  

Our new extended support hours are available to all customers who have active pfSense software support incidents on their account.  Support incidents are available both for pfSense hardware purchased from Netgate and for customers who have installed pfSense CE on their own hardware.

Customers with active support incidents on their account are eligible to use telephone, chat and email to initiate a support request. With our new level of staffing and capability, we’re also happy to announce a reduction in our initial response service level agreement (SLA) from 24 hours to 8 hours.

NEAR-FUTURE PLANS

In the next few months, Netgate will further refine the professional support model for pfSense software.  This new support model will include three Enterprise level support options with initial response times of 2, 4 and 8 hours, varying methods of requesting support (phone, chat, e-mail), advanced hardware replacement, complimentary professional services consultation, training discounts, and more depending on the level of support selected.

Once our new support options are launched, sales of new support incidents will cease. Any existing support incidents held by the customer will be honored. Support incidents are valid for up to one year from purchase date and are non-refundable.

While you are planning for the next level in our comprehensive 2017 support offering, you may purchase support incidents here!

JUST THE BOOK!

Several customers and community members have requested access to The pfSense Book separate from the additional features of the pfSense Gold subscription. In order to celebrate the launch of 24×7 support, we are announcing a new, lower price for the HTML version of The pfSense Book, by Christopher M. Buechler and Jim Pingle, which you may purchase here.

Starting today, a one-year subscription to the online edition of the official pfSense book can be purchased for $24.70/year. Customers who purchase a pfSense appliance from Netgate will continue to receive complimentary access to the book.

As we look back over the last ten years, we are in awe of the diverse group of highly motivated individuals who have collaboratively assembled into the pfSense community.  We at Netgate would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the pfSense community, and especially all of our customers, large and small, for continuing to make pfSense a growing, sustainable, open source project.

We look forward to what the future brings!

pfSense Partner Interview: Voleatech

If you’re keeping up with the pfSense project, you will know that 2015 has been a busy year. This includes the launch of our official partner program which enables customers from around the world to purchase official pfSense hardware and services from a recognized and supported entity in their own geographic location.

One of our Select Partners in Europe is Voleatech GbR. We reached out to the CEO, Sven Auhagen, for some comments on his experience being a pfSense partner. We encourage any pfSense customer in the region to get in contact with Sven and his team to see how they can help you with official pfSense hardware and services. It has been a delight for us at pfSense to work with Sven on making our offering available to those in Europe. You can reach Sven at pfSense@voleatech.de

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You are the CEO of Voleatech GbR. Tell us a little bit about your company.

My company was founded on the philosophy and values of bringing open source products to people and enterprises, and we have been very successful thus far. We want to provide the best possible customer service and experience and combine traditional business models with open source products to enable the best of both worlds to our customers.

What made you want to become an official pfSense partner in Europe?

We were actually interested in a pfSense partnership before the partner program started. The main reason is our previous experience with pfSense and our strong belief in the project. We had already implemented pfSense with some of our larger enterprise customers before the partner program, and always had a great experience and feedback.

In my opinion pfSense is the best firewall available and we want to bring that experience  to Europe in an official way so it is easier for customers to obtain official pfSense hardware. Also, the more awareness we can bring to the project and its utility in a business environment, the more it can grow and continue in its development.

Since becoming an official partner, how has your business performed?

We were excited by the great responses from our customers all over Europe. We are trying to make the pfSense hardware as affordable as possible by providing the same experience as purchasing from pfSense directly. Customer satisfaction is the most important goal we have and pfSense helped grow our business and professional services offering since becoming an official partner.

How has the pfSense team enabled your business to succeed?

The support the pfSense team has provided has been amazing. They have really enabled us to sell pfSense products in Europe. They helped us with an open ear and being there for us if we had any technical questions we couldn’t handle ourselves. The team around pfSense have been great to Voleatech.

What benefits does a customer realize by purchasing official pfSense products?

The most obvious one is having a great hardware with the pfSense logo. This our favorite firewall product. The hardware is optimized for the pfSense and pfSense software is pre-installed and tested. No more worries about updates or wrong drivers for the hardware anymore! For speed, look-and-feel and ease of use, the official pfSense hardware has been the best I have seen so far. I personally use a SG-2220 at home and I have to say I am amazed by it.

What are the benefits of purchasing an official pfSense product from Voleatech?

If you are a customer in Europe, buying from Voleatech has all the benefits of buying from pfSense directly, and more. We are based out of Europe in south Germany.  When you go to Voleatech for your pfSense needs, you do not have to worry about importing the hardware, currency exchange, fees for customs and VAT, etc. As an official partner, the hardware we sell is the same as the hardware from the pfSense store. We do ship out of Europe and most of our orders ship within 3 days. So your firewall could be at your doorstep a lot faster than ordering from the pfSense store if you live in Europe.

We offer professional services and support to our customers in Europe after their purchase and expert consultation before the purchase to help in finding the best solution for them.

Explain your “service after the sale” approach.

We do offer a range of services before and after the sale.

pfSense Customers can benefit from a range of professional services after their pfSense purchase with us. We offer professional support for customers network infrastructure so their network products are always secure and up to date. In case of an emergency our staff is available to help and resolve it as quick as possible.

Our team can also help you design a new network or update your current network structure to better fit your current needs.

We also offer systems and infrastructure installation of pfSense or Linux systems, as well as migrations from other security appliances to pfSense so customers can get the most out of their pfSense hardware.

What are your plans for the future as it relates to pfSense?

We would like to grow the pfSense part of our business and establish pfSense as an enterprise brand that is known beyond the current community for reliability, features and great service.

The community is an important part of pfSense and I strongly believe the community and increased visibility in the enterprise will be a tremendous benefit. I see pfSense as an equal with other big router and network security products used not just by end users at home, but also at critical parts of the enterprise network infrastructure. Voleatech wants to be part of it!

In cooperation with pfSense, we want to be the technical experts customers can go to in Europe to solve any problem with pfSense.

Per-Incident Support from pfSense

Over the last 12 months, our customer base has grown. The number of firewalls our customers have in production has increased. As a result, the way people utilize our support services has changed. This has required us to be more flexible in the way we adjust to our customer’s requirements and how we lay the foundation for our continued maturation and success in the future.

Our goal at the end of the day is to remain as responsive as possible to your support needs. As a result, we have transitioned from an hourly support model to a more predictable, pay-as-you-go, per-incident support model.

Incident-based support is nothing new in the tech industry. Companies such as Dell, VMware, Apple, Cisco and countless others have implemented this successful and customer-friendly model throughout their organizations. It is our intention that by transitioning to this model, ownership and accountability will continue to drive the focus on your end-to-end experience with pfSense, and you will be delighted by a higher level of customer satisfaction and reduced time to resolution.

As always, we encourage you to utilize the resources available to you prior to opening a support case with us. Links to community support and documentation can be found here: https://www.pfsense.org/get-involved/

Getting Support

Any purchase of a Security Gateway Appliance from the pfSense store will be bundled with two (2) complimentary incidents. These can be used for initial setup or configuration issues, or saved for a later date as insurance should a situation arise and you need assistance.

For those customers who do not have a firewall from the pfSense store, support is sold in economical 2, 5 or 10-incident packs. These incidents are valid for up to one year from the date of purchase or until exhausted.

Legacy Hourly Support

If you currently have an hourly support agreement, it’s still valid! Hourly support agreements (based on the initial 2-hour minimum or additional hours added after the fact) are valid for one year or until exhausted. You will not need to transition to the per-incident model until one of those triggers takes place and you need additional support for pfSense.

For more detail on this new support offering, please read the entire per-incident support FAQ at http://www.pfsense.org/get-support/support-faq.html

We appreciate your continued support during this transition and your ongoing support of the project.

 

September’s pfSense Fundamentals and Practical Application Course

Last weekend pfSense University had another successful pfSense Fundamentals and Practical Application Course, co-taught by Co-Founder Chris Buechler and Principal Engineer George Phillips. We had attendees from across the globe and from varying industries attend this two day course which includes a hands on lab. Not only is this a great venue to learn the complexities of pfSense, but it’s an opportunity to meet some of the pfSense team as well as share notes with other talented pfSense users. Look forward to more courses in the future.

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Chris and George doing some hands on training.

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Note the free coffee.

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Chris assisting while George teaches.

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George assisting while Chris teaches.

Five Things to Know About pfSense

(1) The pfSense store now sells hardware! Working with various manufacturers, we’ve put together a wide range of throughly-tested pfSense appliances that are bundled with 1-year of support. Go to the store for more information.

(2) The pfSense team now does professional services. This includes penetration testing, CARP configuration, network design, conversion from your old firewall to pfSense, and systems/infrastructure install. Please see our professional services page for more information.

(3) There’s only one place to get official pfSense Training. Our August class is full! Our next class is September 5-6 in Austin, Texas! Use coupon code BBC425FF for an instant $500 discount! Details are at pfSense University

(4) pfSense Gold is our premium membership subscription program, designed to provide special benefits to our members while supporting ongoing development of the Open Source pfSense project. The membership is a great way to enhance your ownership of one of our appliances with access to the official pfSense book, monthly on-line meet-ups, and more! Get more info here!

(5) Anyone purchasing a support-eligible product in the month of AUGUST will receive a coupon code for a FREE one year subscription to pfSense Gold (a $99.00 value). Eligible products include the VK-T40E pfSense® Firewall Hardware Appliance, C2758 1U pfSense® Firewall Hardware Appliance, and our latest offering, the FW-7551 pfSense® Firewall Hardware Appliance. Just e-mail your invoice from the store after purchase to help [at] pfSense [dot] org to request your code!

Head on over to the pfSense store and get yours today.

Announcing pfSense University

After months of preparation and high customer demand for official pfSense training, Electric Sheep Fencing, the company behind the pfSense project, is very excited to announce our new training initiative, pfSense University

Our first class, “pfSense Fundamentals and Practical Application” is a two-day event which will cover common usage scenarios, deployment considerations, step by step configuration guidance, and best practices. This course will also enhance your skills and abilities to install, configure and support pfSense in your environment. We have scheduled two sessions of this class – one in August and one in September.

To get more information about this class and to sign up, please see pfSense University!

Introductory price is $1999.00 per class, but use promotional code BBC425FF on the sign-up page for an instant $500 discount!

In addition to official pfSense training, attendees will receive a one-year subscription to pfSense Gold, a pfSense T-shirt, and an entry into a raffle to win a VK-T40E2.

Breakfast and a lunch buffet are provided both days.

Register quickly! Each class is limited to 20 participants!

Please send any questions to university@pfsense.org

Service Offerings and Community Outreach

In the last couple of months, I have been working on expanding the role of our engineers and support organization at ESF from focusing solely on pfSense to becoming a “full-service provider” that can address and solve problems in conjunction with, but outside the immediate scope of pfSense.  Our team has decades of engineering experience that can be leveraged to provide a much broader scope of services and support than we have provided in the past.

Two months ago, we launched our professional services offerings to the public, with no advertising and only responding to unsolicited inquiries from existing customers. The results have been overwhelming! So I wanted to take this time to officially announce our professional services and see how you might leverage our experience to your advantage.

To read more about our professional services offerings, please read our professional services page.

Finally, our organization is growing in a number of ways. Primarily in the number of customers we support on a daily basis.  Brand recognition and community interaction are certainly looking up! Much of what we do and the business decisions we make is based in part on feedback from the community. I wanted to provide this opportunity to provide your feedback so that we may better serve you. Suggestions can be sent to feedback@pfsense.org.  While we may not respond to all, I assure every e-mail is read.