What is our primary use case?
We primarily use this solution with customers who would like to have insight into their application environments. These environments could be on-premise, hybrid, in clouds, it does not matter where it resides. They want to have deep insight into the performance and availability of applications, databases, networks, VMware, Hyper-V, etcetera. It doesn't matter what they want to look at because all infrastructure components can be monitored using SAM. This product can monitor about 150 infrastructure components by default.
What is most valuable?
The most valuable feature of the product is the monitoring capability. Basic infrastructure monitoring is a good start for using the product. For example, I like Microsoft monitoring and various components like SharePoint and Active Directory, which can be very important. But also it is very useful for monitoring Microsoft SQL Server environments. That only covers the surface approach to monitoring applications and servers. You can also monitor the underlying infrastructure. For example, you can monitor hardware components such as the health of your servers so that you know if they are functioning optimally or if they have some type of performance issue or failure. You can go a step further to get deeper insight into specific components. But it is a very good thing to start with APM (Application Performance Management) and to get into monitoring the underlying infrastructure of your system so you are aware of its condition.
What needs improvement?
These tools are made for evaluation and monitoring. They were developed some years ago and they are still evolving, and what I would like to see is that they are made cloud-ready as soon as possible. It would be good at this point to have it so you can run them and use them in the cloud. That is actually already possible, but I want to make sure that they continue to mature that type of development and enhance the product's capabilities.
What can and will be added in upcoming releases is that the product will support a few more well-known database flavors like Oracle SQL server. I would like to see an extension of that capability to other database flavors including freeware environments like MySQL, Progress, and MariaDB. I know for a fact that they will be adding these capabilities in the future for sure, and that is a great step forward.
For how long have I used the solution?
We have been using SolarWinds SAM (Server & Application Monitor) for six years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
SolarWinds SAM is very stable. We are using it with hundreds or thousands of customers and there are no stability issues.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
The product is very scalable. No problem with that at all.
How are customer service and technical support?
The technical support is very good. We can access it 24/7 when we need to.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup is very straightforward.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
Pricing is quite cheap. It starts at 2,440 euros. For that, you have the ability to monitor a couple of nodes. You also get one year of maintenance and support included in the price.
What other advice do I have?
On a scale from one to ten where one is the worst and ten is the best, I would rate SolarWinds SAM as a ten in regards to the total cost of ownership and quality. But being more modest because there is room for improvement I will rate it a nine.
I would highly recommend this solution to users.