VMware SRM Room for Improvement
Enterprise Architect at a consumer goods company with 11-50 employees
I would say a lot could be changed to improve the product in terms of troubleshooting and supportability. I think about every two weeks, we had an incident somewhere in the software stack. There were problems that we faced with the vRA (vRealize Automation) multiple times. We had to fix the problem and redeploy it more than once to get it to work properly. Then we had to completely redo our replication. That is a big drawback because it means we had to cancel other plans that had already been scheduled.
To summarize it briefly: users need a lot of enhancement to the quality and functionality of the software for it to be very useful.
For support of VMware version 3, a more recent patch needs to be released. There were a few times that fixes were released but we have already upgraded to those latest levels and the known compatibility problems are not fixed.
The replication advantage the product has does not work for all VMs. For example, if you have a large difference in change frequency within a VM and the VM is big — in one case our VM was 42 terabytes — the data just does not get across in the migration. So the product is really not able to handle either very big VMs or a very large change frequency. I remember we tried it with one Data Mart SQL database where we do continuous ETLs (Extract, Transform and Load). The data reloads on a daily basis. The replication takes too long to complete. The next afternoon after the migration started, we were more or less at 50%. By the evening, we were at 70%. We scratched the data reloaded and started all over again. We found no means to accelerate that. By the time you appear to be progressing, you have to redo the migration. So that is another disadvantage when trying to use SRM.
There are a lot of minor things that need to be in place on both sides of the migration to make it work. If something goes wrong in the middle of the migration, you will have a tough time trying to troubleshoot it. The product has an insufficient method of logging, an insufficient level of operability, and an insufficient level of detailed technical tracing. This lack of information makes it so you can not immediately pinpoint the issues to troubleshoot them. It cost us multiple weekends of lost time while trying to troubleshoot because we do not get this information from the product.
But the things I would like to see for sure in a new release are:
- Fix all minor connectivity issues with auto-recovery.
- Auto-diagnose, auto-identify, and auto-correct issues as they occur and at least try to fix the issues a few times before allowing it to fail. If the fix is not successful then at least inform users that the fix attempt was made and the particular area where the issue is suspected so that users do not lose hours to troubleshooting.
- Open up the solution to be more environmentally agnostic. It should not be so strongly integrated with vCenter. It should be loosely coupled with vCenter and allow other solutions.
- Make the product more robust and much faster. Many replications we have initiated took two weeks before going to the switchover. A lot happens in two weeks. It seems like an eternity when you have no idea why replications stalled over that long of a period of time.
What I think can be improved is the data replication aspect. For example, I know of another repetition solution called RP for VM. I don't really know how to use it since I've never used it before, but I've read about it. I know its features and I've spoken to some IT practitioners who have experience with RP for VM, who work with Dell EMC, and they gave me the feeling that RP for VM is better than VMware replication technology. The argument is that RP for VM has the ability to get your application going even when there is a loss of connectivity. Whereas in VMware you have to have something like 50% connectivity for the configuration. So in that respect, RP for VM has that feature which makes it better than VMware solutions. I guess VMware should make sure they are on top of their virtualization and data replication solution, more than every other company.
Overall, I can't point to any other thing, apart from whatever feature makes some people think artificial DNE is better than the replication application and SRM. If they can just take care of that then I don't think there's anything else.View full review »
VMware introduced the two next versions of the solution. They are SRM 6.5 and 6.7. I don't have any experience with these two products. However, if I was to talk about version 6, which we are using, at that time we faced a problem specifically when we create recovery plans. After the creation of the recovery plan, sometimes an issue happened in the GUI, in the Center. I'm not sure if that has since been resolved.
We've faced issues with the licensing. If you don't choose a specific license, you can only cover around five or ten virtual machines.
The biggest issue for us is that this product does not have any demo for customers. They should offer demos so that clients can try it out before they commit to buying a license.View full review »
Operations Engineer at a government with 5,001-10,000 employees
I would say VMware has room for improvement with this product. I am sure it is probably better in their 7.0 version, but there are still some bugs in the 6.O version that relates to using it with different browsers. I think a lot of what I run into is related to the 6.0 version. I believe a lot of those bugs have been fixed in the UI once you upgrade to 7.0.View full review »
The decision to move to another product is a matter of room for improvement around functionality and requirements that we had with AWS and moving to the cloud. We are not going to be procuring any more licensing for SRM when we make the move to the cloud. We were looking at a cloud-native solution in order to provide the same functionality as the SRM provides but in the cloud. That is just a matter of the changing environment.
If the functionality of SRM could be replicated in the cloud, that would be the improvement we are looking for in the product.
Senior System Engineer at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
The interface is not easy to use and can be made more user-friendly.View full review »
I would like to see a detailed history of the events for each site because I have found difficulty with that. The two vCenters have to be synchronized, which sometimes gives us problems because Keberos does not tolerate more than five minutes in time difference.View full review »
When used in conjunction with storage replication software it is not possible to separate and failover an individual VM. When the VMs are sitting on the same storage LUN, the granularity is not sufficient. Ideally, we should be able to choose one virtual machine and separate it from the rest.
If the price were more competitive then it would be very good.View full review »
There are sometimes performance issues when working with outside links, and it would be better if this were improved.
You need a lot of knowledge to work with the interface because it is not really easy to use, and it would be great if the dashboard were simplified.View full review »
If you have a failover case, you need to work on it manually. It would be helpful if this could be automated. It would simplify things.View full review »
The configuration process could be improved.View full review »
VMware Software Engineer at a insurance company with 10,001+ employees
Cost is definitely an area where the product could be improved, I'd definitely say it should have cheaper pricing.
Definitely the product could be faster and of course in IT everything is about pricing.