VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Review

We are able to deliver a unified, three-tier app in a fraction of the time

What is our primary use case?

It is used to deploy and manage unified configs in an engineering environment. It has performed pretty well.

How has it helped my organization?

It has improved things, absolutely. We had a lot of config drift before, and this really helps us keep it on track.

Speed to provision is probably our biggest, significant gain.

What is most valuable?

  • Integration with Infoblox, for IP management
  • Three-tier app deployment as one unified Blueprint

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't had any issues with the stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We've only used it within our lab engineering environment, which is up to 1,000 VMs at any point, so it's been pretty solid.

Which solutions did we use previously?

I was a VMware consultant for years and I saw successes with it in other people's environments.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was very easy. The upgrade was also pretty easy. It was not quite as easy when I piloted it through Lifecycle Manager, but that was in its infancy. It has probably gotten better.

The solution itself has a learning curve to get used to building the Blueprints, but once you've done it, it gets much quicker.

What was our ROI?

Our time to deliver a fully unified, three-tier app, at the right version, is one-twentieth what it was before. There is no manual intervention. No IP management. It just dramatically simplifies all of our processes.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I haven't had the opportunity to use many comparable products.

What other advice do I have?

My advice would be, use it with NSX and with Infoblox.

I give it an eight out of ten, mostly due to the learning curve to catch up to where you need to be. Some third-party integration, that would still be nice to see.

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