Check Point Firewall Appliances

                I am just getting into an environment with a large Check Point deployment and I am looking for a little bit of feedback from other real world admins. Looking for what people like, what people don't (why hopefully). Also for those of you who might run Check Point devices in your environments what to dig into first as far as getting more experience on the devices and a better understanding of how not to break them. I am slowly going through all of the official documentation, but would also like to hear a real world opinion.

Thanks in advance!


Watch out for licensing gotchyas.

In active/active ClusterXL situations (load sharing multicast mode) be
careful of multicast--make sure any traversed switches and routers are
compatible with Ethernet Multicast (make sure they don't partition ports
due to high broadcast traffic). Active/Active clustering can also make
troubleshooting a pain--which unit has state for which flow, etc..
Also, minimize lag time between State Synchronization nodes or suffer
myriad hard to isolate problems. I advise you to minimize the number of
cluster nodes per vlan or you will effectively DOS your attached
network--think broadcast storms.

If you use unicast active/active clusterxl, you can run into pivot

They are great firewalls, but like all systems they have their

--Patrick Darden

Having a love-and-hate relationship with Checkpoint firewalls after working
for 6 years daily with them I am
probably biased :), but will say they are great firewalls once you know to
work with them .
If you are completely new to it I'd recommend Checkpoint CCSA/CCSE from
accredited APT course as the shortest path ,
- CBT Nuggets CCSA course , but last time I checked it was for NGX R65 that
is substantially
  different from current versions, only if you can get it really cheap
- Documentation from Checkpoint site (freely available to everyone) is the
start-all end-all source (I did it
this way) takes time but in the end you will have a through understanding
of the product
- Online is a good place once you know the basics. If, on the other hand,
you don't know to do manual port-forwarding , Google will only suck your
time. But for problems/inconsistencies/debug : - Independent forum where you can always find advice
from many knowledgeable and helpful folks ; Same goes here - people who can
configure route-based VPNs with policy-based routing with closed eyes hang
around here Official support forums from Checkpoint,
less active than 2 above