Where/How to learn PaloAlto Firewall?

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Where/How to learn PaloAlto Firewall?

L0 Member

Good Morning All,


I am new to this site and new to PaloAlto Firewall. I have used many other firewall and looking to get familiar with PaloAlto technology (Firewall/Network), I am wondering  if there is any Online Demo access to PaloAlto networking devices ( Firewall Dashboard-similar to Meraki one) or available community addition PaloAlto OS to simulate or run virtually in VNWare for learning/educational purposes, (not commercial use).


Cyber Elite
Cyber Elite


For the education part, there is free training.


As for a demo, not sure on that.


L1 Bithead



Try PaloAlto Beacon at https://beacon.paloaltonetworks.com/. It should let you log in with your current PAN support portal creds. This is PaloAlto continuing education portal.

L2 Linker

You can buy a PA-220 firewall on ebay for <$100 since hey went end of sale.  Most of the features work even with expired licenses. Only the paid features like IPS/IDS and SDWan are not available.   Routing and Global Protect and AppID and IPSec all continue to work. If your company is retiring old 3000 or 3200 firewalls, these are good lab boxes as well.


The other option is to get your employer to buy  PA-440 Lab firewall and Lab license Bundle. As of Feb 2024, this is about $800.

Cyber Elite
Cyber Elite

there's a great book out there 😉


as Steve mentioned you can scour second hand websites like eBay for used hardware, most of the features will still work without needing an active subscription.

Most cloud vendors (Azure, GCP, AWS,...) will also give you some free credit when you sign up, and you can then spin up a 'free' VM version of the firewall that will let you play with all the bells and whistles (the BYOL version doesn't have subscriptions so will be most bang for your buck on the free credit, the PAYGO bundles do come with subscriptions and can be used to test malware downloads or play with URL filtering for example. they run more expensive so will burn through your free credit more quickly)

Tom Piens
PANgurus - Strata specialist; config reviews, policy optimization

L4 Transporter

Heres my 2 cents from a similar question:



Palo Alto has a training portal site that has some videos and quizzes if you like that: Home : Beacon (paloaltonetworks.com)


If you're feeling really adventurous you can read through the admin guide as this is the documentation your will be referring to throughout: Next-Generation Firewall (paloaltonetworks.com)


Looking over the information for the PCNSA certification may not hurt either: Palo Alto Networks Certified Network Security Administrator (PCNSA) - Palo Alto Networks


And I liked Reapers book on mastering pan-os as that goes over some more real world stuff then documentation/best practice stuff does. Mastering Palo Alto Networks: Build, configure, and deploy network solutions for your infrastructure...

Thanks for the info, I appreciate it.

  • 6 replies
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