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Competitive Comparison

Forward Networks 
vs. RedSeal

Are you only getting half the picture or an end-to-end view?
See the difference

RedSeal vs Forward: Similar but Different

Whether you're researching a compromised host or performing a compliance audit, it's crucial to ensure that the data you obtain is 100% accurate. This is where Forward Networks' Digital Twin comes in handy. By examining the configuration and state of every device that is transmitting packets in the network, we provide you with unparalleled insight into how the network is operating. This allows you to see the entire picture rather than just fragments of it when investigating security issues.

RedSeal and Forward Enterprise might appear to be very similar platforms, but they are not. Although they both provide a network model and a topology map, allow users to conduct a path analysis, and verify configurations. Neither platform can change device configurations. Each has a completely different approach and can provide very different outcomes: RedSeal is built exclusively for SecOps teams while Forward Enterprise serves NetOps, SecOps, and CloudOps. RedSeal is built for SecOps teams with a focus on policies, risks, and compliance; Forward Enterprise serves to collect, parse, and analyze network data in a way that makes NetOps, SecOps, and CloudOps teams more efficient and successful.

For multi-cloud network modeling, Forward's step-by-step cloud collection process is simple and straightforward. Forward Enterprise displays collected cloud elements as well as their related connectivity and filtering details when performing path searches and analyzing results; with cloud NACL’s and security groups along with their details are intuitively illustrated and understood. By comparison, RedSeal uses “distributed firewall” in the context of cloud filtering elements, which users often find confusing. 

Forward Enterprise can discern higher than L4 constructs, such as app-ID, URL-ID, user-ID. For example, if PAN firewall has a policy restricting access to torrent traffic from specific users - within the Forward Enterprise model you can query for this type of traffic and define intent checks. Forward users can also prevent config drift with regular intent verification checks. Automated alerts notify appropriate team members should a non-compliant configuration be detected.

Exclusive Forward Enterprise features:

Network Query Engine
Network snapshots for historical analysis and behavior diffs
Layer 2 to Layer 7 support
Auto-curated location-based
CLI Custom Commands for snapshots/data collection
Network device vulnerabilities

See it all with Forward Enterprise

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Mathematically Accurate Network Data

Forward Enterprise provides exceptional network behavior analysis that is based on a mathematical model. This model calculates all potential traffic paths, resulting in highly accurate results. Additionally, the software supports all major hardware vendors and standardizes provided data, thus offering detailed vendor-agnostic information and various path-filtering capabilities.

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Comprehensive Compliance Reporting

STIG verifications are available from both Cisco and Juniper. Additionally, there are numerous custom verification checks written in natural language. By using NQE, users can leverage these capabilities to create custom checks and reports that are tailored to their specific environments. This provides limitless possibilities for users to monitor what is crucial to them.

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Network Risk Assessment

Forward Enterprise offers a Risk Assessment service by utilizing Vulnerability and Exposure Analysis. Additionally, the Security Posture Analysis provides users with a clear and comprehensive overview of the connectivity status between zones, and it is visually presented in an easily understandable manner.  The insights derived from these functionalities are essential for proactive threat mitigation

Your Perfect Multi-vendor Solution

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Stronger Security Through Accurate Data

RedSeal's limited platform is not as useful as it might seem to NetOps or CloudOps teams. It provides security teams with limited data compared to Forward Enterprise. Forward Enterprise has proven to be extremely useful for SecOps, NetOps, and CloudOps, providing a single platform that can be shared across the entire IT organization, eliminating the fingerpointing between teams and reducing the number of tools needed.
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Data accuracy you can trust

Data accuracy you can trust

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Detailed network topology

Detailed network topology

RedSeal builds network topologies from device configuration plus some state files. No CDP/LLDP information is used. Cisco Discovery Protocol and Linked Layer Discovery Protocol provide valuable information about neighboring network devices, like device type, capabilities, and network connections. CDP/LLDP aids in network visualization, troubleshooting, and decision-making. Unfortunately for RedSeal customers, the device configuration used within their platform is insufficient for building an accurate enterprise network topology. Furthermore, ongoing RedSeal topology management involves a significant manual level of effort, which makes it challenging to use in large organizations.

Forward Enterprise builds the network topology using device configuration, state, CDP/LLDP, and some proprietary algorithms for the most detailed and accurate network topology available. Forward Enterprise users can view the global network and drill down to a single location or device in a few clicks. Forward auto-curated location-based visualization scales to any network size.

No Client Installation

No Client Installation

Easy to Deploy

Easy to Deploy

A steep learning curve is necessary to deploy and begin using RedSeal.  Maintaining the platform can also be challenging, resulting in many companies dedicating a single person to run and manage the platform. This leads to knowledge gaps and prevents cross-team collaboration and sharing helpful network data beyond a single individual. Software that is difficult to learn and maintain limits scalability and creates knowledge bottlenecks. 

Forward Enterprise can be deployed on premises and network collection configured within a day. Product release updates are simple and there is no need for a dedicated person to maintain the platform.

Fast and scalable

Fast and scalable

Better usability = more users

Better usability = more users

A quick search of software review sites will reveal how few individuals actually use RedSeal. And those that do use the platform, are those who are responsible for updating the map, managing inventory and managing rules. Their dedicated role is to generate reports for others, perpetuating the knowledge gap.

Forward Enterprise is a platform that fosters regular engagement across network operations, network security and cloud networking teams. Individuals seeking essential data, conducting network research, troubleshooting issues, generating intent check alerts, and addressing compliance and reporting needs all use Forward as their network's single-source-of-truth. 


How to Achieve Stress Free STIG Compliance

There are nearly 500 complex specifications in the DISA STIG compliance checklists. Most of us don’t have time to read them, let alone check our complex networks to ensure total adherence. Unfortunately in addition to creating risk on the network, non-compliance can result in extremely expensive fines and a painful level of scrutiny for government agencies.

Many agencies are trying to achieve compliance manually, or through a combination of tools but this is expensive and error prone. Join our Federal Technical Solutions Engineers, Arica Beckstead and Sean Deveci to learn how a digital twin can streamline your compliance efforts and give you full confidence heading into an audit.

Watch on BrightTALK

Forward Enterprise Integrations​

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Don’t take our word, see what our customers say

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Read our reviews on Gartner Peer Insights and see why customers love Forward Enterprise
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