SolarWinds NPM Review

Email alerts notify us in the case of problems with network devices or critical services

What is our primary use case?

We use this solution for infrastructure monitoring, including servers and network devices.

How has it helped my organization?

This has helped us to monitor the availability of our routers, switches, servers, and virtual environments. We also use it to monitor our services. When a critical service goes down, SolarWinds will send us an email alert. It also supplies us with information that makes it easier for us to find the root cause.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the notification that we get, via email, when a device in our network goes down.

What needs improvement?

The user should be able to customize the dashboard to their own requirements. Right now, we have to design separate dashboards for visualization. For example, there is one for the environment and another for the infrastructure. I would like to design a single dashboard that contains my visualized environment, my physical environment, my services, and my processes. This would make the job of monitoring easier.

Application Performance Monitoring should be included in this solution.

The reporting is in need of improvement.

For how long have I used the solution?

Three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is very nice. This is a good solution, compared to other monitoring solutions.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have had no issues with respect to scalability. As we get more devices, routers, and servers, we simply add them to SolarWinds for monitoring.

There are nine people that manage this solution and receive email alerts. We have six people with read-only access in our NOC department, and there is also an admin console that the remaining three people are managing.

How are customer service and technical support?

There are a lot of guides online, and whenever we have issues we consult them. Most of the guides are "do it yourself", and we have not encountered any problem that has necessitated contacting technical support.

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

Prior to this solution, we were using HP NNM, the Network Node Manager. With HP the monitoring was in silos, whereas SolarWinds gives us a unified dashboard. This is the reason that we switched.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup for this solution is very straightforward.

The time required for deployment depends on the number of devices that you want to monitor. For example, if you want to monitor a hundred devices then I think that it will take three or four days.

In our environment, we are monitoring more than four hundred servers and approximately two hundred network devices. Our deployment took about three weeks to complete.

Two or three staff are suitable for deployment.

What about the implementation team?

We handled the implementation in-house.

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

We have a perpetual license for this solution, and my impression is that this solution is cheap.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

In addition to this solution, we evaluated SCOM. We found that SolarWinds is better.

What other advice do I have?

SolarWinds is a great solution, and I think that for anybody looking for a nice infrastructure monitoring tool, this solution will do the job.

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

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