Formal Deprecation Policies for older Gen Firewalls
Now that SonicWall has introduced Gen 7 hardware and SonicOS 7 that architecturally diverges from previous generations pretty significantly (e.g., MIPS vs ARM processors, VxWorks-32 vs Linux-64 operating system, etc.), I wonder if SonicWall has (or should have) more formal and public policies around deprecating previous generations. I have a Gen5 TZ100 which although I no longer use, still has firmware updates available, albeit over a year old... My Gen 6 TZ500W is not that old and since I only use it to protect my home network, the higher speeds and feeds of the new Gen 7 TZs won't help me on my Comcast network!
Does anyone know if a formal policy exists? I work at AWS in the RDS database team and our customers are absolutely pushing us for formal policies around hardware and software deprecation... and they just "rent" from us! 😀
Be good for SonicWall to do the same to help customers, both large and small, plan accordingly. Thanks in advance...
there are Product Life Cycle Tables available if this is what you're looking for:
I wouldn't expect much development for Gen 6/6.5 anymore, some house-keeping probably.
Thanks @BWC This is very helpful.
To the SonicWall Product Managers lurking in this community... I would hope there would be some development still on SonicOS 6.5 for a reasonable period of time in line with support of the recent Gen 6 hardware and applicable SonicOS releases. Most customers can't rip out everything and replace it just because of an architectural shift, no matter how good it is. Often rip & replace opens the doors for customers to evaluate other competitive options. In the database world, I have to keep between 3-5 major releases of my platforms active for more than just security fixes...
@PeterT, I refreshed several of my small business clients with new hardware over the past 18 months, so there is nothing in SonicWall's introduction of a new OS that's going to change my upgrade plans.
I have built my refresh plan based on something I learned from APC, which is called 3-5-7. I always try to purchase a device with 3 years of licensing. Before the end of the 3 year mark, I sit down with the client and let him or her decide what approach to take for continuing the licensing. If the business needs and work pattern looks stable, I will renew for two more years. Again, before the 5 year mark, it is time to make a similar decision: in this case, extend the license or use the Secure Upgrade program to obtain a newer, possibly more powerful, device.
That process provides for stability in terms of my fleet, stability for my clients' business expectations, and flattens my learning curve.
This will also help me avoid lots of headaches as SonicWall irons out the inevitable issues with the new software and OS over the next two years...