IBM DataPower Gateway Review

A security and integration platform that is very stable

What is our primary use case?

We are using it for ITM API for one of our customers.

What is most valuable?

I like that it is very stable, and we never experience any downtime. 

What needs improvement?

Traceability could be improved, especially for business operations. The traceability of the transactions could be an improvement point for DataPower to work on.

It would be better if they provided JSON support. JSON protocol data has changed format. It started performing internal transformation to JSONx. This might be an additional complexity. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using IBM DataPower Gateway for more than three years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We do not have any stability issues around the power source. We experienced that as a physical appliance, and then we also changed it to a virtual appliance in both setups. We are very happy, especially about the stability of the product. We did not experience any downtime, even if the number of transactions increased heavily. That is the best thing.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We are not using the cloud-native version of this program. I know that IBM API connects with some other deployment patterns, but I did not experience them. The physical appliance is like a physical machine, so it is hard to scale. 

You have more flexibility with the virtual version of the appliance. For instance, compared to WSO2's API manager, and according to my experience, it is not as easy to scale physical or virtual appliances.

How are customer service and technical support?

They have a very wide range of support globally. We are working in Turkey, and we have IBM people locally. It is easy to get support, but since the product's stability is really good, we do not need much support from the vendor.

How was the initial setup?

I did not install it myself, but since it is not installed on the cloud-native environment, like OpenShift or Kubernetes, it is not a containerized version. It was harder for the third-party providers who installed the product. We have roughly six people on the maintenance and operation side of the fleet.

What about the implementation team?

A third-party service provider installed this product. It requires experience, and it is not very easy for your teams to learn how to install it. You need consulting services to set up such a product in your environment.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

As far as I know, they have a perpetual license for this product. They are paying perpetual fees rather than an annual subscription or annual pricing. 

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend this solution to other companies, especially large enterprises. I would not recommend it to customers in the SME segment or startups or scale-ups.

On a scale from one to ten, I would give IBM DataPower Gateway an eight.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Implementer
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