SolarWinds NPM Review

Delivers valuable out-of-the-box reporting, GUI customization, and integration with other SolarWinds modules.


What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are ease of implementation, strong out-of-the-box reporting, and the ability to customize the GUI.

From a platform standpoint, the integration of NPM with the other SolarWinds modules is very strong, seamless, and valuable in presenting a single pane of glass for network, application, and database performance and availability.

We're a small enough company that it would be difficult for a single person, or even a small team, to attempt to tie data together from different software products in the way that SolarWinds does.

How has it helped my organization?

We no longer have to ask questions about who is using bandwidth/CPU, what application is driving that usage, and how our databases perform as a result of that usage. We have completely eliminated any blind spots in the operation of our core networks, applications, and platforms.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see stronger integration with SolarWinds LEM. This would be a nice-to-have integration at this point. This is really the only product with which it is not integrated.

When one looks at the entire suite of SolarWinds products, what we've seen
over the past several years is an ongoing theme of integration - as
modules like SAM, NCM, IPAM, VMAN, DPA, and others benefit full integration
into the base NPM product - allowing a user to leverage
application/database-specific performance metrics into views, reports, and
alerts.

When I say that LEM would be a nice addition, that's precisely what I mean is
- right now, there is no method for view integration, correlation, or cross-platform data sharing between the LEM appliance and our NPM
installation.

In other words, say I'm looking at the Node Details view on one of my domain controllers. It would be excellent to have one of the
widgets in that node details page pull in the last XX events LEM has on
the node in question.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have used NPM since 2004 and have leveraged it at multiple workplaces since.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have not had any stability issues. It's been a predictably solid platform across software revisions, even with the jump from 11.x to 12.x. That upgrade also included a complete graphical update for the console.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We did not have any scalability issues. We're monitoring thousands of elements across three continents with one poller and we have had no scalability issues.

How is customer service and technical support?

I would give technical support a rating of 7 out of 10. When I get on the phone with a support engineer, I'm usually impressed with their level of knowledge in providing a timely resolution to customer issues. The secret is to get on the phone first if you need something solved the same day.

Which solutions did we use previously?

I've used HPE OpenView and PRTG in the past. My reason for switching was a combination of ease of use, customizability, and integration between network/application/DB monitoring and measurement.

How was the initial setup?

The setup is straightforward almost to a fault. If you can follow directions, you can set this platform up in a day and start getting usable information.

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

It's not as cheap as some solutions, but the value you get is excellent. Licensing increases are largely painless and are easy to accomplish.

What other advice do I have?

Identify the business/organizational problems you're looking to solve. Build your graphs and reports with an eye toward those problems. This creates business value almost immediately.

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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