What is most valuable?
The most valuable feature is the single pane of glass to see everything in your infrastructure and know when you're running low on resources, and things are over-provisioned and under-provisioned and so on. Whereas, without it, you are relying on scripting and other things like that. From that perspective, it has been a big help.
What needs improvement?
The biggest issue we have with it, honestly, is the interface, it's very unintuitive. To really know how to get the most out of it, you almost need a course; it's very complicated. While we think we know a lot about it, I bet you there is stuff that we haven't tapped in to yet. I think they could have made the interface a little bit more intuitive for the user to be able to understand things without having to go to a course.
I took a lot of points off my rating because vROps is not intuitive; because that to me is huge. I have a lot of stuff to manage and I don't want to have to figure out every one to the nth degree. I shouldn't be expected to be a next-level expert on this particular product just to be able to get basic functionality out of it; that's what I feel like the issue is with this one.
For how long have I used the solution?
We have been using it for a couple of years. We used it back when it was vCOPS, two years ago.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
It hasn’t been consistently stable. We've had a couple of glitchy issues with it; nothing major, but it hasn't been 100% easy to live with. I don't know why that is; maybe because it's a newer product. It just seems like it’s not as mature as it could be.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We haven't had to scale it, so I guess I can't really address that, as we haven't gone down that road.
How are customer service and technical support?
I have found VMware support to be somewhat lacking. It's hit or miss. Sometimes we'll get somebody who really knows what they're talking about and they'll be able to resolve our issue really quickly; other times they keep requesting log files until we're blue in the face and they never come back with anything, after we provide all of this data to them. It's hit or miss; I feel like it depends who you get on that day. It's been spotty to be honest.
When I’m deciding on a vendor, I really like to work with companies that are accessible; you call a support line, you're not hassled with, "Give me this license number," and we'll send you on to the next guy. I want to call up and get somebody on the phone and talk to them, the first person I talk to. VMware has sometimes been like that for us and then sometimes not. That's what I look for. I look for responsiveness, communication. I don't want to be only communicating over email; I like to talk to people. It seems like in the technical support industry that is become less and less favored as a communication mechanism; it's more email and so on.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
Honestly, we saw it on the VMware website and it caught our interest. We hadn't necessarily been looking for it because we had done a lot of scripting for our monitoring and that kind of work. We downloaded it, tried it out and said, "Hey this thing’s actually pretty useful." That's that.
What other advice do I have?
Take a class. I think there are videos we watched online, where people were going through some features and so on. If you try to just understand it right out of the box without reading a lot or going online and looking at something like that, you might have some troubles with it. But I definitely think it's good to have; it's certainly better than not having a solution in that area.