New Relic APM Review

It helps us monitor our performance by giving us clear unobtrusive insights with weighted numbers, and although it integrates with Docker, it's missing a few minor metrics.

Valuable Features

Application monitoring. The fact that we can trace a request through all the layers of the application (gateway-app server-database (persistent and caching layers)) and trace all the steps in between, is invaluable to us!

Improvements to My Organization

We can monitor our performance easily using the metrics, Apex, that New Relic have devised. This is a weighted number (0 to 1) which gives us a clear unobtrusive insight into our performance. Therefore, by leveraging the API, we can integrate the current performance metrics of our entire stack into our wall-boards and internal reporting.

Room for Improvement

With the recent introduction of Docker integration we're seeing increased metric collection, but are also missing a few minor metrics and deployment setups.

Use of Solution

We've been using it for over five years now.

Deployment Issues

In a regular and normal usage, deploying the agent (either PHP, NodeJS or the server agent) is very simple and intuitive. We do however run into issues integrating the PHP agent into the Dokku deployments, but we have been working with the Dokku/Heroku/New Relic support staff to fix this.

Stability Issues

It is fairly stable. There have been issues in the past where stability was not fully reliable, but all problems were quickly resolved and we personally haven't had any data loss issues of any kind.

Scalability Issues

We haven't seen any issue that affect us personally.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:

It's a big 10/10. The engagement of the customer service either via tickets or the public forum is excellent.

Technical Support:

After building our initial integration with our framework several years ago the technical support engineer provided us with great insight and it really was a two way street of communication: we provided ideas that were implemented and they also gave us insight into optimal integration points.

Previous Solutions

We've tried various other tools over the years, but after giving New Relic a try, we haven't looked back.

Initial Setup

The initial set-up was at the time the most straightforward and easy as imaginable. This really pushed us over the edge of giving it a go and loving it from day one.

Implementation Team

We did it ourselves, and it's easy.


Since it's an application monitoring platform the actual ROI is a lot harder to calculate than other services directly related to the business. We do however see an increased focus on performance and therefore have a good ROI. It's also due to the fact that there are ways to keep the costs of New Relic down and still have the benefits.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

Just try it out and install it on a couple of systems. You could go "all in" and have the full license and instalment on everything, but certainly during start-up, you could leverage a couple of instalments and still have insights, if it's installed into core parts of your set-up

Other Solutions Considered

Can't remember which platforms were out there. Soon after we started with New Relic, AppDynamics went live, and much later Server Density added APM. They both seem like worth competitors, but as previously mentioned: we have no reason to switch yet.

Other Advice

Just give it a go and see how it goes.

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