Fortigate (Router / Firewall) Unit
Important Information Update
October 3, 2007
Libraries on the YRL network may remember from a previous email that I recommended purchasing a
new Fortigate unit since the units that YRL purchased on behalf of member libraries that chose to
connect to the Supernet via YRL came with a three year maintenance agreement. This funding came
from the province as part of the original Supernet Build grants. The maintenance agreements on the
units took effect from the time of installation at each library location, so some units will have their
maintenance agreement expire beginning in October 2008. I will send a separate email detailing the
expiration dates by library location shortly.
This is still a long way away, but it doesn’t hurt to plan ahead. You may also recall that hardware falls
under the responsibility of the local library; YRL agreed, as part of the last rate increase process, to
provide the support service necessary for Supernet network connectivity. We had always hoped that
another Supernet related grant would appear from the province to help everyone replace or renew their
maintenance agreements for these Customer Edge Devices (the router/firewall units ‐ Fortigate 60s).
But as you already know, there has been no news of another grant round targeting this area of
technology specifically. APLEN has received no additional funding to pay for something like this.
As a result, Libraries have three main options for dealing with the situation when the existing
maintenance agreements for the Fortigate router/firewall units expire.
The main options are:
1. Renew the existing maintenance agreement with Fortinet. Renewing an existing maintenance
agreement is NOT considered an eligible expense through the CAP programme. Depending on
the number of years you would like to extend the maintenance agreement, the cost to renew an
existing agreement can vary. This needs to be negotiated on a library by library basis by YRL , as
your network provider, with a Fortinet reseller (e.g. Bell). Fortinet has a policy of providing
support for its two most recently produced items. Fortinet has stopped selling the Fortigate 60
unit, and now only sells Fortinet 60b models. As a result of the Fortigate 60 unit no longer being
in production, support for this product will be time limited.
Cost estimates for renewals to an existing Fortigate 60 wifi maintenance contract:
1 yr – approximately $370.00, regular business day support hours (8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to
To renew beyond one year requires negotiation and switching to a ‘co‐term’ agreement. This is
what Fortinet does for all products no longer in production. We do not have pricing on co‐term
agreements for Fortigate 60s at this time, or confirmation of how many years of additional
support would be available through a co‐term agreement. Please contact YRL for more details
about this option.
2. Replace the unit with a new model (e.g. Fortigate 60b). Because this is a tangible piece of
hardware, a new unit and an accompanying new maintenance agreement is considered an
eligible expense under the CAP programme parameters. However, the amount of funding
available will not completely cover the cost of purchasing a new unit and its maintenance
agreement (can cost $1800 to $2500.00, depending on the number of years of maintenance
3. Switch to a managed service, like Axia Secure. This would cost the library approximately
$125.00 a month, and includes a hardware upgrade, when needed, for an additional $199.99 at
the time of the upgrade. Since it is a service that does not have a finite end term, it can’t be
counted as a consumed item within a certain fiscal year, and so is not considered an eligible
item for funding under the CAP programme.
The issue, as always, is that we do not know if there will be another round of CAP, or if there will be
another grant available to libraries that could be used for purchasing new network equipment like a
Fortigate router/firewall unit.
As I mentioned previously, since the existing maintenance agreements will begin to expire in October
2008, there is time to plan ahead.
As a very general rule of thumb, technology plans usually incorporate replacing computer and network
hardware once the initial maintenance agreement expires (e.g. 2 or 3 years after the initial purchase).
There are excellent technology planning articles, advice and the TechAtlas planning tool created
especially for public libraries available on the Webjunction.org site (from the homepage, ‘resources’
then select ‘Canadian Libraries’ and then ‘technology planning’) or try this link:
This week I plan to start conversations with other libraries and library systems in the province and with
APLEN to see if we could arrange a group bulk discount purchase or renewal via APLEN, however this
will not be decided in time to meet the CAP 2007/2008 ordering deadlines.
If you or your library Board would like details of each option, in particular the Axia Secure option, I
would be happy to forward you a copy of the quote I have received and explain it in depth.
Please feel free to contact me at the YRL Systems Department if you have further questions, and rest
assured that I will let people know what I know as I learn it, primarily through the mid‐monthly email
updates sent out each month from the YRL Systems Department to YRL member public library staff.
YRL Systems Manager
Phone: (780) 962‐2003