vRealize Business for Cloud Review

A VM estimating and billing tool that is stable, scalable, and has good technical support

What is our primary use case?

We have the complete VMware suite, including vRealize. We are using this solution as a chargeback tool for billing the respective business groups and project teams for our VM solutions.

Our interaction with clients begins with planning. We meet with the client to discuss project requirements, expectations, and use cases. We collate the information and use this to recommend how much compute, storage, and neutral bandwidth they will need.  Once we have those numbers in hand, we can easily size and bill the customers based on what was discussed. For example, a customer may want 100TB of storage with 2TB of memory, and vRealize will help us to bill these resources.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is that it allows us to compare the billing between the clouds. It gives us a graphical representation of the difference between clouds like AWS, Azure, and other private or public cloud providers. This gives us a ballpark figure and it makes it easy for our clients to decide whether to go with a public or private cloud. Furthermore, we are the trusted advisors inside the organization and this tool enables us to decide whether to spin the virtual machines on-premises or off-site.

In terms of security and manageability, we have not had any difficulties.

What needs improvement?

I would like to have an easy way of modifying the reference data that is used for the purposes of estimating the total billing. All of the data is stored by VMware, and it contains information such as the price for 1GB or 1TB from each of the cloud providers. Sometimes the information does not match our commercial rates and we need this to be in line with our budget, or our investment in infrastructure.

This solution integrates well with vCenter but we would like better integration with multiple solutions like Hyper-V. We need a cloud-agnostic platform because this is a costing tool, and we do not want to have a gap between the costing of public versus private, or on-premises clouds. As an example, for the same client, I may spin VMs on-premises, and also spin VMs on the cloud. They are for the same client but are on different platforms, and there should be a uniform price.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using vRealize Business for Cloud for the past four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This is a stable solution. Most of the VMware networks are a service and they are reliable and very trustworthy.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have had no difficulty with scalability. We have almost 8,000 end-users working on-premises. This is being used as a costing tool for almost 200 projects, and it helps the IT the team have visibility with respect to pricing.

We do not have plans to increase usage at this time, but next year, after the billing happens and we see what our position is, we may decide on a new vision.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support for vRealize is good. I would rate them an eight or nine out of ten.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not use another solution prior to this one.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is easy and the deployment is very straightforward.

It takes perhaps five to ten minutes to deploy. It has everything in place.

What about the implementation team?

We have a team of 40 engineers across the globe for managing this VM infrastructure. I don't think that we have a dedicated resource for managing vRealize Business for Cloud, so the people who manage the infrastructure use their own diligence to manage it. When they need special expertise or they need technical service, my advice is that anyone who has a basic knowledge of virtual machines can usually handle it.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did not consider many other options when we evaluated this solution. The PoC was straightforward and it worked well in all of the scenarios. After that, it was deployed.

What other advice do I have?

For anybody who is implementing this solution, my only advice is to learn the tool and then use it.

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

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