AppDynamics Review

Performance analytics trace web service transactions across multiple tiers. It provides full visibility, including method invocation-level insights.


What is most valuable?

Integrated and aggregated performance analytics traces transactions across multiple tiers in which web services deployed in separate data centers call each other. It tracks the time spent from the beginning to the end across multiple layers (web, servlet, JMS, EJB) and forked threads. It tells the full story about a transaction in addition to resource utilization. It tells you if one of many servers ran a major GC (garbage collection) in the last five minutes, or if one of the transactions took more than 10 seconds. It also drills down to its components.

How has it helped my organization?

It provides full visibility of what’s happening in complex transactions which involve services running in our NJ, AR, and CO data centers. It provides data beyond standard monitoring, including method invocation-level insights.

What needs improvement?

It could understand more invocation protocols. Some custom-built web service processors are not recognized. As a result, the requests are identified as plain servlet calls. For example, it does not recognize Pega’s customized web service calls. I hope the vendor will accumulate experiences and exceptions, and provide guidance to customers on how to handle them.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using AppDynamics for four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It was involved in resource utilization issue in one of many of applications that is based on Oracle Fusion.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I did not have any scalability issues. It is well designed for good scalability. Even with 1000s of servers, it is easy to identify a few that are suspicious by sorting the metrics by latency, CPU utilization, garbage collection time, and so on.

How is customer service and technical support?

Technical support was excellent. They are very responsive. I usually get responses the same day.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We used HP Diagnostics. It could only analyze resource utilization without correlating this to transactions.

How was the initial setup?

As far as the customer is concerned, it was easy. But the vendor needs to do the bulk of the work setting up the SaaS.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Get bulk pricing. The volume will be higher than you think.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at most competitive products on the market, including Dynatrace and HP lines.

What other advice do I have?

Don’t treat it as a monitoring tool. Use it as a troubleshooting tool. It helps you understand how the apps run in much more detail than good or bad. You can see where you need to improve.

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