How has it helped my organization?
We do work as independent consultants, but mainly the focus is on a crisp and reliable base layer for Service Level and Business Service Management with a working CMDB. In order to map the data and events correctly, you have to have a solid foundation.
What is most valuable?
The Event Management is outstanding; still is the most interesting part of the product.
What needs improvement?
The sizing (which is difficult), the maintenance of it and the upgrade paths. This is a difficult area which is not easy to cover, as every client has a different approach of implementing the product.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
Stability is mainly a sizing issue. The product needs to be correctly sized and architectured. For this, you need skill and experience. If you follow this advice, you will have no issues. If you implement without a plan or architecture, you will be lost.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
This is related to stability. You need to know what you have, then all will go well.
How are customer service and technical support?
People buy from people. If your account rep is a good one, all goes well. You cannot answer that easily. I have seen light and shadow, as one could say.
Support has room for improvement. Very often, you find yourself answering the very same questions over and over again. I would give it a 6-7.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
Some of the clients I have came from other solutions; mainly because they were outdated they switched, or because they were discontinued. The same applies in the other direction, especially if the clients had the wrong account rep.
How was the initial setup?
Initial setup seems to be easy. The deeper you go, the more you need to know about the product, especially about its agents. Some functions are under-represented, especially the Agent Consoles, which are a little too basic compared to the old versions. So you still use a mix of versions which leads to no savings in hardware at all. HA setups are complex (best to use VMotion). Ports are not that well documented. Again, experience is the point. If you know the products under the hood for a long time, you will do good; otherwise, you might run into problems. This is the same for lots of products in the area. If you know what you do, all goes well.
What about the implementation team?
We normally do these kinds of implementations; I am a consultant, not a real end-user, as the clients no longer have the expertise on board (no matter which product they use).
What was our ROI?
Monitoring is like an insurance. If you have it, you feel safe. If you do not have it and run into an accident, you wished you had it.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
Use conservative figures. In terms of hardware, monitored servers and also effort. The product is not cheap. But as with other products, you get what you pay for.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
Before choosing this product, we evaluated other options, and we still do. Mainly, it ends in a mixture of tools, and using open source-based tools reporting up into it, like Zabbix, OP5, Nagios XI or something like that.
What other advice do I have?
Estimate enough time for the implementation. Never trust anyone who tells you that you will be finished in three months. Calculate at least one year for all tasks.