VMware vRealize Operations (vROps) Review

We use it to show application teams how much or how little VMs are working, potentially taking back resources.

Valuable Features

The most valuable features are the ability to look at performance metrics historically, and the capacity planning where we can see waste in our environment. Primarily, that's what we're using it for now. A company as big as us, we tend to over-provision. That's based on application requirements. Sometimes politics can be involved with that. We use vROps right now as a way to show application teams how much their server's working and how little it's working, so we can potentially take that stuff back.

Improvements to My Organization

It has helped the company function when we run reports. Every once in a while, we'll get complaints from our end users that an application is slow. The vendor gets on a phone call with us and says, "It’s your VM environment." They'll call us up and say VMware is slow. We use vCOPS to look at the analytical data of those VMs in question. We can show them: If you're having issues at this time, we don't see any CPU usage, we don't see a CPU usage increase, we don't see a memory increase, we don't see it needing more memory, we see low disk activity. We'll show those graphs to them in an email. Once we show them that, they typically back off.

Room for Improvement

Personally, I’d like to see improvement in its usability. As an IT professional, we're tasked with having to jump between various platforms. A tool like vCOPS, from my experience, requires a little bit of a higher learning curve. I believe they can work on that. For example, with reporting, it does a whole bunch more stuff that we don't even use it for right now. You have to put time in to learn all of that, such as creating the dashboards, all the widgets and so on. It's a high learning curve at first, and difficult to learn. You have to put in a lot of time with it. That could take years for some people at their company.

I would like to have the ability where, for example, you bring up clients into your environment for the first time. There should be an option to have all the alerts go into that. You turn the alerts off in vCenter and have them go through vCOPS. That would be a big help for me, personally.

Stability Issues

It's available. However, we run into issues where it gets very slow, where you try to log in, you can't log in; or, if you log in and you search for an item, it doesn't take you to the right window. We've had issues with integration with the web clients; if you search for a VM in the vSphere web client, there should be a link to vCOPS. That link does not work for us right now.

We also had an issue where it just stopped working. The disk filled up, so we had to call VMware support. They had to clear out some temp files or something like that.

Scalability Issues

I think that's where the slowness, for us, comes in. As we add more VMs and similar items, it seems like it's slower, but at times it could be fast. I don't know if that's another bug.

Our environment is roughly 1,500 virtual machines and across 60-70 hosts. We've experienced that, as time goes by, it seems to be getting slower.

Customer Service and Technical Support

We call technical support whenever it's broken.

For the last issue, it was pretty straightforward. It was a documented issue, so hopefully it's a bug and it gets released in a fix.

Previous Solutions

Actually, at that time, nothing else existed. We, at the time, really fought to get that in the house.

Initial Setup

Initial setup was straightforward; you just import the OVF file. Give it a name, IP, and so on; connect it to vCenter and you're all set.

Other Solutions Considered

We did not evaluate any other products.

Other Advice

Always look at the competition first, obviously. That's part of our job. PoC it first. Make an informed decision after that.

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