Dynatrace Review

With PurePath, it is easy to see what areas you want to alert on and catch

What is our primary use case?

Our group handles a multitude of applications using Dynatrace. In my experience, I have used a lot of different tools, and Dynatrace has been pretty awesome with handling all the various issues that pop up.

What is most valuable?

PurePath is pretty awesome. The amount of data that the tool exposes compared to a lot of other agent-base suites is dramatically different. A plethora of people  embrace a lot of the topology views and various different things. I am primarily doing DC RUM, so on that side there are a lot of awesome abilities where people who can't implement an agent are able to still monitor a lot of their apps and decodes.

What needs improvement?

We are not using the ServiceNow integrations. We have to go through this event engine, so some of the data and the alerts get taken out. We have a script that pulls in some data around what the alert is dealing with, but maybe there is more data that could be exposed there. Besides that, in regards to Diffie-Hellman encryption stuff, it is a hurdle with what we are doing with DC RUM, where everyone is embracing stronger security suites, but the whole point of DC RUM is to get that data between the tiers.

We have big data solutions now coming in, so we are being asked to export some of that data into Tableau and various different platforms, so anything that makes that easier is welcome. DC RUM has an API that they can call, and Dynatrace can stream out to it. Those APIs are welcome.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There have been problems, but nothing that we could not figure out. There have been a couple issues where agents have caused issues with applications, but you could chalk that up to QA testing or other stuff. Overall, it has been a good product.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I hear it is supposed to be improving. My impression is mixed. We have a lot of Dynatrace servers with a lot of agents, so we are pushing the capacity of some of those servers. At the moment, we are not doing any cross-server stitching between the agents, so we are missing out on that piece a little bit. However, that will improve with the next version. Therefore, we are managing the capacity, but currently it is decentralized.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is awesome. I primarily do DC RUM, but all of that is in Poland, and they are phenomenal.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have used CA, Wiley, CA CEM, and a little BMC stuff; those are the main ones.

They were good in their own silo. They just did not bring everything together in one central view. That was the difficulty. A lot of teams did not embrace it as much as we have seen the Dynatrace platform be embraced.

We switched from CA to Dynatrace, because limited data that was being exposed from Wiley. You get similar response time volume and error rate for instruments and components, but it is a lot more manual to get those components instrumented. Whereas a PurePath is right in front of you, so it is really easy to see what areas you want to alert on and catch.

How was the initial setup?

Initial setup is straightforward. I have stood it up at multiple companies. I did it at Verizon Wireless, PNC, and Merck Pharmaceuticals. I knew what to do, so it was easy. 

What about the implementation team?

When I first did an install, there were some hurdles. However, everything was well supported by our site rep, who came on site frequently in New Jersey, and was helping me out. It helped.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I was in for onboarding DC RUM. We did a PoC with BMC, CA, Dynatrace, and AppDynamics. There are some other competitors who are always being looked at, but the data exposed was dramatically better from Dynatrace, so that is why we went with Dynatrace.

What other advice do I have?

Look at Dynatrace. Having worked with it and recommended it for approximately eight years, it has been a great platform.

The role of AI when it comes to IT's ability to scale in the cloud and manage performance problems is very important. We must embrace the AI overlord. There is a lot of data that comes into Dynatrace, and anything that makes it easier to arrive at the end resolution of a problem is welcome. There is always more analysis that needs to be done, but I think it is important to start using AI to get there more quickly.

If I had just one solution that could provide real answers, not just data, the immediate benefit I would like to see is anything that helps the app team know how to get the answer more quickly and save us time in the middle of the night. 

We get woken up all hours of the night for issues. You would hope that app teams would start to use the tools themselves, when it comes down to it, we know the tool best because we manage it. 

Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: 

The two main things I would say are critical:

  1. Obviously, the technology cannot fall behind competitors, but at the same time, they have to remain pretty agile in developing the tool. 
  2. They need a large enough support staff where any issues which arise, we get support on them. 
**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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