We have recieved a lot of interest in Palo Alto’s next generation firewalls. Fortinet has been at the top of Gartner’s top next generation firewalls assesment lists. For your curiosity, we bring you a vidoe showing the manufacturing facility where industry’s top firewalls are manufactured and assempled.
Firewall technology emerged in the late nineteen eighties when the internet was brand-new and global connectivity was still very limited. Over the next two decades’ firewall technology evolved dramatically. Today next-generation firewalls have created a revolution and data protection through application layer filtering. Next-generation firewalls have the greatest level of control and security on the market, as the overall landscape of computer technology is constantly shifting.
By nature, security specialists take a dynamic approach to their products. First the product management team identifies an opportunity in current network security market that they will address. Once they have determined the requirements and design the architecture, a prototype is built and tested. Then it goes into mass production; this starts at the kitting station where the components are all gathered up. Next stop is the solder paste printing machine; here solder is deposited to the board with a metal stencil. A squeegee wipes paste over the stencil. Once heated, this will bind the components to the board. Now it’s time for the chip shooter; a computerised robot picks up the smaller components to place on the board according to the layout programmed into the software. After the chip shooter is finished, the boards are inserted into the IC placer. This is similar to the chip shooter but handles placing the larger components on the board. Next the board is put into the reflow oven for 220 degree heat causes the solder to melt and bind together. At this point the bottom of the board has been built, once this is complete, the board will be flipped and the top will be built in the same process.
Video Credits: Palo Alto Networks
Each time the board comes out of the reflow, it is visually inspected for quality control. The board is also subjected to an automatic optical inspection or AOI. Here a computer checks for orientation of components, missing components, alignment, and parking. Now the board is brought to the stuffing station. All the parts that must be installed by hand are done at this station. Next the boards are placed on a conveyor belt and run through the wave soldering machine. Inside the machine all the pins on the bottom of the board are soldered together. Now the board goes through another quality-control inspection making sure everything has been assembled perfectly. The next machine inspects the board’s further using x-rays to verify that each solder joint is perfect. The final components that need to be press fit are attached at the next station, and then the In-Circuit Test machine (ICT machine) tests the circuits on the board by powering them on. The heatsink and battery are installed by hand as well. The circuit board is now complete. Final quality assurance tests are performed. Visual inspection and PCB a functional testing will ensure that the circuits are operating to spec, and all the ports are communicating.
Now the boards are moved to another building, where the enclosures are being built. Employees call this area the supermarket; here they go shopping not for vegetables but for more high-quality components. The components are gathered and then a robot called the Water Spider, which delivers the parts to the workers who will build the box enclosure. Each box is built by hand at the first workstation. Once completed the box is tested similarly to the circuit board. Diagnostics and port traffic are confirmed. Next the box is powered on and run for six hours this is called a running. This allows the components to heat up to operating temperature and ensure that there are no issues. After the run in the diagnostic software is replaced with the final operating system. Now final high-voltage grounding test ensures that there are no shorts and the box is within all technical compliances.
The final product now tested and ready for action is carefully boxed and sent out to the warehouse for shipping. As the orders are received a forklift holds the boxes and the warehouse staff ship them out.