CA APM Review
Its alerting feature provides us with immediate notification of the resource that has gone down.


Valuable Features

The system monitoring is one area that we like. Transaction tracer is another area that has worked well. The platform monitoring features is great, as APM integrates very well with some of the application server performance monitoring interfaces.

Improvements to My Organization

The alerting part – if the system goes down we get an immediate notification that a resource has gone down, so it reduces the impact on the business.

Room for Improvement

The end-to-end monitoring is not good. For example, a user reports a slowness issue, but we don’t have an option in the pool to find out which layer is causing the problem. The system doesn’t break down the application performance to show you what’s happening and where.

Use of Solution

I've been using it for over three years.

Deployment Issues

It is a long process. Use-case monitoring - you have to know the application in and out to make it work. Other tools allow you to create the profile and configure it later. With APM, we don’t have anything like that. Configuring the use-cases monitoring is a long, time-consuming activity, and not a user-friendly one. It requires expertise and knowledge of the applications, and CA APM.

Stability Issues

Outages with the solution are very frequent nowadays actually. We see the APM solution going down two to three times a day. And it’s a long troubleshooting cycle, as the CA APM system seems to add a lot of performance overhead.

Scalability Issues

We haven't scaled it yet.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:

It’s OK. They respond and acknowledge customer requests.

Technical Support:

We are not happy about it, because we have had more than five or six tickets open for some months.

Previous Solutions

Previously, we worked with Dynatrace and AppDynamics. We changed because our organization decided to go with the enterprise licensing options that CA offers.

Initial Setup

It was neither straightforward nor complex, but with some effort we were able to get it right. The application configuration for system monitoring is a good feature. It integrates well with application servers, but the application use-cases and monitoring was time-consuming.

Implementation Team

We implemented internally, partnered with a vendor team. The vendor team were good but they had to depend on CA service tickets to complete the installation. This is because they don’t have clear guidelines to configure some of the solution’s features; for example the installation guide for URI monitoring feature doesn’t cover all the use-cases, and the partner had to raise tickets with CA for assistance so there was an impact on time.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

I think pricing is good, actually. That’s what made our organization choose this solution. We didn’t face many challenges with the licensing because of our enterprise agreement.

Other Solutions Considered

  • AppDynamics
  • DynaTrace

Other Advice

For traditional technologies it’s the right tool, but for the latest technologies it might not be the right solution. I would tell them to consider all their options before deciding on CA APM, because the configuration, installation, and maintenance are time-consuming tasks. There seem to be a number of technology & support challenges with this tool.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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