What is most valuable?
The most valuable feature is giving end-to-end, about the business transactions, specifically, which is an area everybody struggles with. What they are looking for, basically, is how customers are viewing the transaction, from the end-user perspective, which is useful for the business people. They can streamline where they want improvement, but it also gives you the details down to the nitty-gritty that the developer teams are responsible for. Along the way, it's also showing you the overall performance for the infrastructure that you have for the application.
How has it helped my organization?
A benefit is ease of use, compared to other products that we have seen before, such as Wily. You get to the information a lot quicker, instead of spending an hour trying to get to the point that you're looking for, especially with the workflow maps that they have. It's really very easy and intuitive also. Looking at snapshots, you can quickly pinpoint where you want to look at.
What needs improvement?
Specific to what our experience is, because we're using Cloud Foundry, we're using an extension to monitor the infrastructure for that; that's probably the weakest point for it, because it basically collects JMX metrics. One of the things that we see missing when compared to Wily Introscope is the concept of calculators. You get a group of metrics and you make calculations based on it. That's something I've seen people require. It's something they want to see on their dashboard. They have the metric browser; it's not capable of doing such a thing. That's one thing that people would like to see.
Dashboards, at least the basic ones that we have, because we are not licensed for Analytics, as of yet; it seems basic and not the best area of the product. The dashboards could use some improvement.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
So far, it is pretty stable; no downtime. Our implementation is high availability also, so it's a clustered environment. So far, we haven’t had any issues that I am aware of.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
So far, we haven’t had any no scalability problems; we size it properly, as far as hardware. Maybe we even oversize it sometimes. So far, we haven’t had any issues.
How is customer service and technical support?
So far, personally, I opened three tickets so far and I got what I wanted to get. I was pleased with the resolution.
How was the initial setup?
The only complication with initial setup was the PCF, the Cloud Foundry monitoring. I guess it wasn’t something AppDynamics had planned for before. I don't know. It's a new area to everybody. They rolled it out because it's microservices; there were a lot of teams involved, just to get the tiers and nodes in check. That took a lot of work. Also, we have multiple data centers that are sharing the same application, so we needed to take steps to distinguish the data centers from each other as well.
What other advice do I have?
Take the training; take the time to learn it; explore it. That's my advice.