CA UIM (DX Infrastructure Manager) Review

It fulfilled our needs at the time by allowing simpler deployment and management. I would like to see better rapid deployment options, interface updates, and less reliance on Java.

Valuable Features

There is a large selection of Application specific probes available. We are primarily a Microsoft shop, and most all of our needs are covered with what is offered. This relies on backend sources such as PerfMon counters, event viewer, services and similar. It covers our basic monitoring needs in this regard.

Improvements to My Organization

We use this in a Multi-Tenant environment as an MSP. Prior to UIM deployment, we were using SCOM which was overly complicated and difficult to manage. UIM fulfilled our needs at the time by allowing simpler deployment and management.

Room for Improvement

Although it is better than SCOM, it still needs major improvements to usability. If you need a rapid deployment solution, this is not the best tool for that job. You can create Super Packages which allow you to pre-configure Probes, but it still requires a lot of invested time to set up and still needs customized to each environment if they are not identical. UIM and its agent/probes rely on JRE7u45. Support is not offered for any newer versions at this time. I would like to see better rapid deployment options, interface updates, and less reliance on Java.

Use of Solution

We have been using this solution since before CA bought it from Nimsoft. I have been using it for about a year.

Stability Issues

We have run into instances where probes are no longer supported and are integral to our monitoring, and there is not a bulk solution for replacing with the new supported probe. If you are using the SSL Tunneling in the Hub Probe, Support has been unable to identify a method to monitor the tunnel status which is built into the Windows Service. Many times, the tunnel will experience communication issues and being queueing thousands of alarms, alerts, qos but we have no way of being notified until we notice we are no longer getting metrics. The Hub probe has not been reliable for us in the past several versions across various sites and we often need to work with their developers to resolve issues. SAN and Networking appliance compatibly is severely lacking (Dell EQL, Nimble, StorSimple, Cisco ASA, and more all have issues or have no support). You can custom create via SNMP MIBs, but this requires manual implementation.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Support has been very responsive to our requests. They understand the limitations of the software and do their best to accommodate our needs and issues, but the software just doesn’t seem to be meant for smaller businesses and needs a lot of hands on attention.

Previous Solutions

We previously used SCOM which is similar in many regards. This was the first product we evaluated and chose it mainly because they offered to customize it to fit our needs. Other vendors were not as responsive to our requests, although I feel they may have been a better fit overall.

Initial Setup

It was not straightforward. There are many modifications you need to make to text based configuration files that are not well documented is deployment instructions. We have multiple CA solutions that were not easy to integrate. This required and still requires time with their developers to resolve issues.

Implementation Team

We had an outside company assist with the installation. I would recommend getting as much hands on time as possible with an expert. UIM is not intuitive, there is a high learning curve.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

If you have a large scale deployment or resell services and have a dedicated administrator with java dev experience, pricing may be suitable for you. CA is one of the more expensive solutions, and not one of the best in its category.

Other Advice

UIM is showing its age, and need a major overhaul to keep up with competitors. I would recommend using other solutions.

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