I've found that the most valuable feature is the Server/Agent architecture. In most cases, once you install the agent onto a machine, you rarely (if ever) need to log on to the agent machine itself to diagnose issues with most scripted deployment tasks.
Improvements to My Organization
Urbancode Deploy allowed us to implement a nearly-complete Continuous Delivery solution for one of our web applications - builds were deployed and promoted straight through from a development environment all the way to a Staging/UAT environment with little to no engineer interaction.
Room for Improvement
Upgrade & Migration from older versions, as well as Import & Export of application automation data between multiple environments has some room for improvement.
Use of Solution
Installation into a clean environment is easy and straightforward. Upgrading an existing Urbancode Deploy server is unfortunately quite tricky, as many of the migration scripts for the database need patching and fixes based on the specific customer install.
Only on a couple of very rare occasions, and IBM Tech Support was very responsive in all of those.
Yes, with this particular product it is important to heed the provided best practices for inventory management and server specs - the larger the installation footprint, the more quickly the internal database size and repository size will grow if not managed appropriately.
Customer Service and Technical Support
Their sales and licensing support seems adequate. I would encourage any potential customer to make sure they accurately forecast their licensing needs as the PO process seems to take weeks rather than days. Technical Support
IBM's Technical support is fantastic when you are in a "down" state - unfortunately I feel it drops off quite quickly from there. If the application is not entirely non-functional, their capacity for working through functional issues does not seem very deep.
Yes, I have used FinalBuilder for deployment automation - which did not use a Server/Agent model or offer any sort of repository management or inventory tracking, which were the major selling points for Urbancode Deploy.
Initial setup in a clean environment is very straightforward.
Urbancode Deploy allowed our group to go from managing deployment of two enterprise applications to fifteen, over the course of 18 months, with no increase in staffing or increase in system downtime. The number of deployments performed by our group increased exponentially and our deployment success rate went up by quite a bit.
Other Solutions Considered
Yes, we evaluated Thoughtworks GO and Nolio alongside this product.
Be sure to budget for/ accommodate a demo/dev/test environment for uDeploy as well as a production environment.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Nov 19 2014