AppDynamics Review

Line-level tracing helped identify and eliminate performance bottlenecks.


Valuable Features

Line-level tracing: This helped massively with identifying and eliminating performance bottlenecks. We had a significant slowdown in our app that we were struggling to identify. Using AppDynamics to trace hosted code to bottlenecks proved invaluable. This however only got us so far. When we reached the limit with AppDynamics, we sought advice from their technical team. After all, we were using a very expensive product that didn’t get us all the way. Under NDA, AppDynamics took a working branch of our code and investigated the bottleneck internally. They did this using other tools besides AppDynamics. This was beneficial to them to identify things that could not be achieved with AppDynamics. Later, they were able to discover a way to make this easier within AppDynamics.

Improvements to My Organization

AppDynamics has become the go-to tool for issue identification. The DevOps team was able to take more ownership for defect detection to improve discovery time and reduce risk of issues becoming known to end users. It also reduced the involvement of third-line support in issue detection.

Room for Improvement

The UI is clumsy and slow. The AppDynamics portal had an Adobe Flash UI, a bit dated for a modern SaaS. It had an old feel to it; unusual for a company with advanced technology. It would often take a while for the portal (controller) to load, making it a little tedious to use at times. I’m not sure why it took so long, maybe it was doing real-time processing of data, which, if so, I’m more forgiving.

Use of Solution

I used it for three years.

Stability Issues

I did not encounter any stability issues.

Scalability Issues

I did not encounter any scalability issues.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Techccial support is 10/10. See a case study from my previous company here: https://www.appdynamics.com/case-study/the-test-factory/.

Previous Solutions

We previously used New Relic. We switched because AppDynamics offered a broader and deeper range of functionality.

Initial Setup

Initial setup was straightforward for Azure virtual machines, but not so easy for cloud services. The installable was difficult to get running in cloud services, but the AppDynamics technical team were supportive.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

AppDynamics is a premium tool. You’ll soon realise this expense would’ve been greater without AppDynamics.

Other Solutions Considered

Before choosing this product, I personally did not evaluate other options.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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