What is our primary use case?
Our main use case for the product is we want to do virtualization. We want to save costs on the physical hardware because we were running some big workloads on the physical hardware that we migrated over to VMware. In terms of the retail applications which we are running on the physical hardware, we have now virtualized them.
How has it helped my organization?
The product has improved the organization in terms of the infrastructure stability and security, balancing the resources, and providing cost saving. The cost savings and the TCO with vSphere are very good.
We are using our vSphere for our new workloads in terms of Federation Services as well as for our VDI workloads. These are mission critical for us because they are the customer-facing.
What is most valuable?
Day-to-day, the most valuable feature on vSphere is its DRS feature: Distributed Resource Scheduler. We don't need to manage or balance resources. As soon as you come to the office in the morning, it's automatically balanced.
We work in a retail company, so you don't know what time the customer will be coming in or what time the work load is high. We are not uniform in terms of our workload. Therefore, it is important for us that when the workload is high, it is automatically optimized.
In terms of the vSphere security, the most important feature is the Trusted Platform Module (TPM), which was launched in 6.7, as well as the encrypted vMotion. These help us to bridge the gap if there is a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack or suspicious activity, so at least our VMware workloads are secure.
The best feature that we like is the Web Client. We just login and there is the data center. We don't have to walk to the data center everyday. We just open our laptops, log into our vCenter, and we have our full data store and data center ready.
What needs improvement?
I can see the room for improvement still in the user interface (UI).
There is still room for improvement with the HTML5 Web Client. They are working on it, as I can see on their blog. However, there is still room for improvement in the newer features that they can push into it.
For how long have I used the solution?
One to three years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
Stability is perfectly fine. In the past eight months, we have been able to achieve 100 percent uptime. Therefore, the stability is quite impressive.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We are using it on a big scale. vSphere is one of the biggest product of VMware, and we have around five vCenters with around 80 hosts.
Scalability is one of the best things about vSphere. You don't need to change your design if you have a new demand for workloads or if a new product is coming in. Thus, the scalability feature is awesome.
How is customer service and technical support?
Tech support is sometimes good and sometimes bad. We work in the Southeast Asia region where sometimes we have a language barrier. Therefore, their tech support is 50/50 for us.
How was the initial setup?
With the initial setup, server workloads were running on an open source. When we had planned to go with VMware, we faced a bit of complexity. It was just a one time thing. After that, everything went smoothly. So, there were some complexities that we did face.
What was our ROI?
In the past six months, we have saved around 110TBs of storage, which is almost equivalent to $200,000 USD. That is a huge savings.
We have seen a tremendous performance boost. From when we started this VMware engagement in 2016 until now, we have seen around a 70 percent performance boost. This is a good number.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
When we started with VMware, we also tried Citrix XenServer. We considered them as well as Red Hat's platform.
What other advice do I have?
I will rate vSphere a ten out of ten, as I'm a huge fan of vSphere.
Please look into this solution. You can have it, test it, and download it for 60 days, then you can test it yourself decide what is best for you.
We don't have VMware cloud on AWS, but we have plan to go on it in six months.
The most important thing when choosing a vendor: We look for performance, return on investment, and tech support. Tech support is very important for us in day-to-day tasks. These are the things that we look for in a vendor.