We just raised a $30M Series A: Read our story

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) is the #2 ranked solution in our list of top Cloud Management tools. It is most often compared to VMware vRealize Operations (vROps): VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) vs VMware vRealize Operations (vROps)

What is VMware vRealize Automation (vRA)?

VMware vRealize Automation automates the delivery of personalized infrastructure, applications and custom IT services.

This cloud automation software lets you deploy across a multi-vendor hybrid cloud infrastructure, giving you both flexibility and investment protection for current and future technology choices.

Agility Through Automation

Automate the end-to-end delivery and management of infrastructure, and accelerate application deployment and releases.

Choice Through Flexibility

Provision and manage multivendor, multicloud infrastructure and applications by leveraging existing infrastructure, tools and processes.

Personalization Through Governance Policies

Ensure that users receive the right size resource or application at the appropriate service level for the jobs they need to perform.

Efficiency Through Cost Containment

Provide consistent, automated delivery and management of IT services and reduce time-consuming, manual processes. Reclaim inactive resources for reuse with automated reclamation, providing cost savings.

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) is also known as VMware vRealize Automation, vRA, VMware DynamicOps Cloud Suite.

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Buyer's Guide

Download the VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: October 2021

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Customers

Rent-a-Center, Amway, Vistra Energy, Liberty Mutual

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) pricing:
  • "Customers say this solution is costlier compared to its competitors."
  • "From a budget point of view, the pricing is a bit on the higher side."
  • "It is pricey for what you get."
  • "The pricing is very high."

VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Reviews

Filter by:
Filter Reviews
Industry
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Company Size
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Job Level
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Rating
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Considered
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Order by:
Loading...
  • Date
  • Highest Rating
  • Lowest Rating
  • Review Length
Search:
Showingreviews based on the current filters. Reset all filters
Aravind  Narayanan
IT Service Manager at Allianz
Real User
Allows for a lot of orchestration or customization within our environment to suit our customers

Pros and Cons

  • "vRA helps automate deployment for developers. We do a lot of orchestration or customization within our environment so it will suit each of our customers. So, we have different business units who have their own templates."
  • "We are migrating from vRA version 7 to 8, but the migration is really hectic and time-consuming. There are no straightforward paths to migrate. We are doing an entirely new deployment to go to vRA version 8.0, then somehow get all of the VMs to vRA 8.0. Therefore, it would have been great if VMware had some solutions to upgrade from vRA 7 to 8 seamlessly. This includes the management of all the objects or VMs from the older version. Unfortunately, it is not there."

What is our primary use case?

I'm not a decision-maker at my current firm. It is a huge company called Allianz Technology. We have vRealize deployed, and I'm part of the administration team. We manage our infrastructure and compute storage as well as the virtualization part with vRA.

We have a lot of internal customers and entities of Allianz whom we treat as customers. They make use of the internal cloud portal to spin up VMs and manage them.

Our vRA 8.0 is a distributed deployment in Europe, the US, and Australia.

How has it helped my organization?

vRA has helped almost every team. For example, it has helped the development team and our training team.

What is most valuable?

We are using vRealize Orchestrator (vRO).

vRA helps automate deployment for developers. We do a lot of orchestration or customization within our environment so it will suit each of our customers. So, we have different business units who have their own templates. Some customers might choose a backup solution, then some others will be choosing another one. All of these have been orchestrated. 

Some customers will also opt for a disaster recovery (DR) solution. If they choose the disaster recovery service during the deployment of the VM, then a DR solution will be offered to them and a VM will be created on our DR site. Everything will be synced through the VMware service.

This solution has made it very simple for developers. In a way, a layman or NOC guy can deploy a VM. Once they are familiar with the offerings, they can just deploy it without knowing what is going on in the back-end.

What needs improvement?

We are migrating from vRA version 7 to 8, but the migration is really hectic and time-consuming. There are no straightforward paths to migrate. We are doing an entirely new deployment to go to vRA version 8.0, then somehow get all of the VMs to vRA 8.0. Therefore, it would have been great if VMware had some solutions to upgrade from vRA 7 to 8 seamlessly. This includes the management of all the objects or VMs from the older version. Unfortunately, it is not there.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using vRA for more than three years. Previously, we were on vRA 7.4. Currently, we are operating everything in vRA 8.0. We have been migrating our entire managed VMs and everything to vRA 8.0, which is an ongoing process.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

vRA has been pretty stable, unlike vSphere infrastructure. With vSphere, while nothing has happened, there are a number of integrations that could break. However, on the vRA front, it has been good and stable. There hasn't been a single situation where we have run into a big issue and had an outage, which is great. 

It is too early to come to a conclusion on vRA 8 because it is still getting migrated, but the initial impression is good. It is better than vRA 7.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

vRA 8 is really scalable. There are a lot of integrations that have been much easier compared to vRA 7. For example, Orchestrator is now built into vRA rather than being a Java-based application, like it was in vRA 7, which has been good.

In our organization, there are around 20,000 to 30,000 users. These could be project managers, application owners, etc.

How are customer service and support?

Their technical support is good. Whenever we have had issues, the VMware support team was spot on, especially with vRA. However, this has not been the case so much with their other solutions, especially like vROps, where we had been having issues for a couple of months without any actual fixes.

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

At my previous firm, I worked with vCloud Automation Center (vCAC). vCAC only evolved into the vRA later on. While primitive, it was stable and good to use, though not very customizable.

vRA was the first solution of this type for my current organization.

How was the initial setup?

vRA version 7 was very complex to set up. vRA version 8 is pretty straightforward, whereas version 7 was very complex. It could have been better, but they are on the right path with things.

It has been a very major upgrade. We are doing a lot of other customizations and a strategy session, along with this vRA 8 migration, bringing all our storage solutions to a single vendor. All of this is happening in the background. Earlier, we had a different backup solution for different locations, like APAC and the US. That is why it is taking a very long time to do our migration to vRA 8.

This vRA 8 migration is just one part. There are any number of other things that are coming together with this vRA 8 upgrade. So, it has been complex and happening for over two months. We are hoping to combat it by next month.

We have an internal architecture team. They decide how a deployment should go at a high level. Once the decision is made, only then we will implement it. They considered options, like there should be a single portal for global customers' entry within Allianz. Whenever they choose a location within the portal, the request should go to that location. That is why they went for a single distributed deployment this time. Earlier, it was an entirely different instance for each location, which was totally not connected in any way.

Now, it's a distributed deployment, which means if a customer logins in using a single portal. They just use the drop-down location for wherever they want the VMs to be, then the request will go towards the deployment of that location and dispatch properly on the front-end. 

What about the implementation team?

We have our own DevOps team who does all the orchestration, integration, and whatever other integrations that we want to do. We will check with the vendor of that application, along with VMware, then plan accordingly. We have a lot of integrations with applications, like Brokerage and ServiceNow.

We need 10 to 15 staff members for deployment and maintenance. We need an architect, an engineering team to do all the customizations, a monitoring team, a DevOps team, and a support team for any post-deployment support of vRA.

What was our ROI?

vRA's automated processes have reduced infrastructure provisioning time. Whenever a customer builds a VM, they can choose the number of instances. They can just click the drop-down, select the number of instances, and that many VMs will be deployed in a single go. This has been great because previously they were afraid of doing it manually. Now, every time the technical team needs to deploy, they can provide all the parameters. Its automated processes have brought down the overall time to a fourth or fifth from our previous manual deployment's time.

This is just for supporting our internal needs for all our internal customers. So, we don't actually make any money from this cloud offering.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated Cisco ONE Cloud and Nutanix Calm. We were using VMware solutions in the past. We received good feedback about vRA and that is why we went for it.

Cisco had a lot of limitations on its networking. They needed their own virtual piece rather than any generic or VMware-default distributed switch. That was a major limitation. For the Cisco switch, they own the hardware layer so you need Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS). Cisco UCS doesn't have that much of a customer base, so the development would be slow and have even buggier fixes. Any release for bug fixes or patches would take time

What other advice do I have?

There are different AWS and Azure services, but these are not connected with our vRA as of now. In future, we will maybe look for some type of hybrid setup.

For applications, we are still provisioning the manual way after deployment. We have included some of the basic applications into our blueprints. So, they will get deployed along with the VM spin-up. If we haven't integrated the application centrally, then it is because we didn't get the customer approval because they felt like some customizations may need to be done during each deployment of the application. Therefore, they didn't agree to the integration of applications into the blueprints.

We are trying to onboard other internal customers into our vRA. We have been onboarding customers even onto vRA 7. So, it is a never-ending process because it is a huge company.

I would rate this product as a nine out of 10.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
Flag as inappropriate
AJ
CTO/CEO at a tech services company with 1-10 employees
Real User
Saves a lot of time, provides more visibility, and has extensive automation capabilities

Pros and Cons

  • "The automation part is most valuable. Because it is a VMware product, the automation capabilities that come with vRA are pretty extensive. We can integrate and build a lot of features on top of it, which makes it extremely useful for us."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are mainly using it for automation. Our main use case is providing in-house kind of cloud capabilities to the enterprises so they can utilize automated provisioning, backups, etc.

    Different customers have different versions. We are probably using versions 6 and 7.

    How has it helped my organization?

    One of our main customers is a big tech company. We have created automated labs for their products. They have these events in which they wanted to do training on the event site, and they wanted to have on-the-go labs. We utilized vRA to do that. Another customer for whom we are using VMware vSphere and vRA is a government entity. They have other customers or end-users that are different departments of the government. They have provided them cookie-cutter and templates to provision the VMs and do the backups. So, they are using vRA along with vSphere and the stack to provide a kind of government cloud.

    We use the following DevOps for Infrastructure capabilities: the cloud templating standard for VMware Cloud infrastructure and infrastructure pipelining for continuous delivery. Through these capabilities, we have achieved more control, more monitoring capabilities, and more efficiency in terms of delivering solutions with much more confidence and less number of failures. There is also less strain on our human resources, so everything becomes more easily manageable. These features have saved time for our developers. They have saved 30% to 40% of the time. Using DevOps infrastructure has definitely improved reliability.

    vRA has helped to automate deployment for our developers. These automatic deployments have saved time. It has improved the self-service kind of deployments for the development teams. We have our own internal data centers, and we are also doing a lot of customer deployments. In both cases, it has reduced the time that they have to spend communicating internally with other people. They have these cookie-cutter operations that they can utilize. They can provision their own stuff or deploy their infrastructure pretty quickly. So, the dependencies are reduced, and the developers can focus more on their own part rather than calling the infrastructure team to provision or automate something.

    We have been using VMware within our organization and for our customers, and vRA has enabled us to leverage existing VMware processes, systems, and training in our organization to support IT Ops.

    vRA's automated processes have reduced infrastructure provisioning time. There is about a 60% reduction of time in infrastructure provisioning. 

    Our application provisioning time is also reduced by using vRA automated processes. We have Ansible and other stuff with vRA. There is a 60% to 80% reduction in time for application configuration. It has also reduced the time to market for our apps by at least 40%.

    What is most valuable?

    The automation part is most valuable. Because it is a VMware product, the automation capabilities that come with vRA are pretty extensive. We can integrate and build a lot of features on top of it, which makes it extremely useful for us.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have been using it in our own data centers and for our customers for almost five years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It is pretty stable. This is based on what I have heard or seen for different projects.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    I would think that it is scalable. Our clients are usually looking for somebody who can deploy and configure their environments or provide some kind of managed services support. Around 10% to 15% of our customers are on VMware vSphere automation and vRA automation. Internally, there is a 25% utilization. We are planning to expand its usage this year, and we will see how multi-cloud automation can be utilized. We will try to implement things or use cases in a virtual environment, and then we can resell those use cases, provide support for those use cases, or give training to the customers. 

    How are customer service and support?

    I have not worked with them myself, but our customers have VMware support, and we use their TAC accounts to raise an issue and get support.

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

    Previously, we were mostly using manual processes. The reasons for implementing vRA were more control, visibility, and flexibility. We wanted to move away from manual, human intervention-based processes to automated processes, which would also provide more stability.

    How was the initial setup?

    Its initial setup is of medium complexity. It is not too straightforward, and it is not extremely complex. It can improve. There are technicalities that are involved.

    We have done some deployments that have taken us less than a week. We have also done deployments that have taken us months. On average, it takes three to ten days.

    The deployment strategy depends on the requirements. We like to have a repeatable model, but most of the time, customers have different needs. Wherever possible, we utilize a repeatable model. 

    What about the implementation team?

    In our organization, we have five people who are dealing with VMware infrastructure. Our senior solutions architect has different kinds of certification in VMware solutions. There are two senior engineers and two junior engineers reporting to him. So, we have a team of five people for our internal management and external deployments.

    What was our ROI?

    We have received a return on investment. We are a lean team, and we are able to deliver more. We are able to manage more than what we could manage previously, and we don't have to have lots of people. We are also saving a lot of time, and it is also providing us more visibility.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I don't think we evaluated other solutions.

    What other advice do I have?

    While implementing a solution like vRA, the most important thing is to understand why you're using it for a use case. If you want to implement a solution to do automation, I would suggest seeing what kind of integrations it provides with different endpoints and plan around it. vRA provides pretty extensive integrations. My advice would be to first just understand why you want to use vRA and then have a strategic roadmap implemented. You should start with a basic implementation and then go on top of it.

    vRA has enabled us to derive value from the cloud more rapidly, but we have not yet fully realized that value. We are planning to use the multi-cloud features more as we go along. It is in the roadmap that we have for this year. Similarly, vRA has enabled us to manage the cloud easily through its entire life cycle, but we have not exploited it fully. We have not utilized it for multi-cloud environments. We have mostly focused on the on-prem environments and on Azure and AWS to a certain extent. We are working on utilizing vRA along with other automations from our tech cloud. There is an internal roadmap that we have for this year in which we want to monitor multiple multi-cloud environments, not only for our own staff but also for our customers.

    We have not used VMware Cloud Templates and iterative development for GitOps much. We have not used the multi-cloud Infrastructure as Code yet. We are planning to use it.

    We have also not used vRA much to extend our security footprint into the cloud. We have done it here and there but not fully and not to the extent that I am happy about.

    I would rate vRA an eight out of 10.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    Flag as inappropriate
    Learn what your peers think about VMware vRealize Automation (vRA). Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: October 2021.
    542,721 professionals have used our research since 2012.
    RA
    CTO at Moca Financial
    Real User
    Top 20
    Automated deployment for developers, saving time on their release cycles

    Pros and Cons

    • "A lot of its DevOps for infrastructure capabilities improve reliability. Much effort was put in by some customers, like a large automobile manufacturer, a large telecom, and two large banks, to achieve a certain level of capabilities in this space. These DevOps for infrastructure capabilities have saved time for developers. In one use case for a large marketplace, a typical release cycle took about 80 hours and was brought down to three hours by automating deployment for developers. The quicker that deployments happen, the faster that they can do their product release cycles."
    • "With the workflow aspect, which has manual intervention, a policy needs to be approved by somebody. There could be better management of that piece with better templates. It is like a workflow engine, but does not have enough example templates to do certain things. A lot of people waste a lot of time trying to figure out the same thing, and everybody is trying to figure out the same thing, e.g., how to make a MySQL cluster in a Windows environment?"

    What is our primary use case?

    I was part of the VMware team, doing a double role at VMware:

    1. Leading a sales team for the large financial institutions, the top 50.
    2. Defining what the roadmap for vRealize suite should be.

    I worked for a consulting company. We helped a lot of customers with many things for vRA from provisioning workflows automation to approvals and policies management.

    The solution provides a multi-cloud, self-service, infrastructure-as-a-service cloud consumption and delivery layer. vRA 7 was mostly focused on VMware-based internal clouds with a little bit of external clouds. vRA 8 is multi-cloud, which you can host on-prem too. Everybody is moving away to use the cloud, so it is pretty much a done deal that you need to have it.

    How has it helped my organization?

    If you want to start a VM database as a service, then you start a VM, but your customers don't know what size CPU or memories that they want. So, you can also scale it as needed. They can use vRA integration to monitor and scale up or down using the ESXi Server, then VRa works as an integration point.

    A lot of its DevOps for infrastructure capabilities improve reliability. Much effort was put in by some customers, like a large automobile manufacturer, a large telecom, and two large banks, to achieve a certain level of capabilities in this space. These DevOps for infrastructure capabilities have saved time for developers. In one use case for a large marketplace, a typical release cycle took about 80 hours and was brought down to three hours by automating deployment for developers. The quicker that deployments happen, the faster that they can do their product release cycles.

    When you start integrating vRA with the other VMware products, like vRealize Network Insight (vRNI). That is when it starts giving you the capabilities of extending your templates and networks across multiple hybrids and clouds.

    If an organization has the capability of being able to use it in their application deployment lifecycle, then they can use the automated infrastructure deployment, but not many companies do. Not many companies say, "When I am going to deploy, I am also going to create 20 virtual machines and deploy on them." They normally start out by saying that there will be a separate team with managers in infrastructure and a separate team that does this in deployment. I have seen only one place that has done this, out of hundreds.

    What is most valuable?

    Two things help out a lot: 

    1. Policy management.
    2. Integration with other VMware feeds, like ESXi Server. They have a pretty tight integration with those.

    If you are trying to automate your capacity management tasks, moving VMs and resizing them, then you need to integrate down to the policy level by reconfiguring the use of servers. That is where these kinds of integration points help you.

    vRA's multi-cloud self-service cloud consumption and delivery layer comes with centralized policy control and governance.

    VMware cloud templates: These are predefined templates that work across multiple cloud, hybrid, and multi-cloud environments. You can use the same templates across various clouds, even clouds that have AWS, Azure, and Google. So, you can have a blueprint and templates running across all of them.

    vRA is most helpful in managing the whole lifecycle, taking out the server, bringing them back in, handling outages, and managing clusters, networks, and the entire infrastructure security out there as well as putting identity management all in one place. It creates a control point with its single pane of glass. You can control all the networks as well as their configuration and installation from one place, which is a strength of vRA.

    What needs improvement?

    Interoperability is more of an industry problem. There are multiple cloud provisioning tools out there, and vRA is just one of them. There are a lot of components out there, which all do certain things. There are some hard drives, particular types of servers, particular types of routers, load balancers, and firewalls, where some are stronger in one area and some in another. Interoperability between them would be a good thing.

    With the workflow aspect, which has manual intervention, a policy needs to be approved by somebody. There could be better management of that piece with better templates. It is like a workflow engine, but does not have enough example templates to do certain things. A lot of people waste a lot of time trying to figure out the same thing, and everybody is trying to figure out the same thing, e.g., how to make a MySQL cluster in a Windows environment?

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I used vRA for seven to eight years, then I moved out of the VMware world last year in January.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    vRA 8 onwards is very stable. vRA 7 has some clunkiness, but version 8 is very stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Hardware depends upon the volumes. I had small customers who had two to three clusters of eight servers each to an enterprise customer with 80,000 servers.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    They have a very big community with a lot of support. 

    VMware has its own support, but it depends upon what level of customer you are. Bigger customers obviously get better support than smaller customers. However, bigger customers also try funky things. Smaller customers tend to do things based on the standard, so they normally don't run into problems. The technical support is pretty good.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup is relatively straightforward. 

    From the time that a customer enters into an agreement to using the service, it takes two to three weeks minimum because it takes time to design the whole network.

    You need to have a basic cloud infrastructure in place. With an existing cloud infrastructure, the initial setup takes a couple of days. Most of the time, it is a deployment where you are also building the cloud with it, then all kinds of things are required, like the network topology, routers, security, etc. That takes time.

    What about the implementation team?

    vRA 8 is normally managed by a single guy.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    Customers say this solution is costlier compared to its competitors.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    The open source solutions are cheaper, but they lack documentation. They also have trouble keeping the documentation, drivers, etc. up-to-date.

    What other advice do I have?

    For any cloud-related thing, you have to think it through. Things get sticky, like external firewalls. Distribute, network, and plan because you are not going to get it right the first few times.

    vRA is an orchestration engine, like a workflow engine. What it comes down to, because it is more of a generic tool, what are you using it for? I have seen in places that it has helped people in ITOps.

    VMware's goal is to build a long-standing partnership.

    I would rate it as a nine (out of 10).

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    Flag as inappropriate
    RM
    Sr. Technical Specialist at a comms service provider with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    Provides a single pane of glass for management; helping us to have a holistic view

    Pros and Cons

    • "The DevOps for infrastructure capabilities has saved time for our developers by automating processes and reducing provisioning time. Task time has been reduced by 40 percent."
    • "They should concentrate on navigation and service improvements."

    What is our primary use case?

    We were looking to have a single pane of glass (one console) to manage our complete infrastructure. It has helped us integrate having one user interface to manage our infrastructure and application templates.

    vRA's multi-cloud strategy is very important to us as a cloud service provider.

    The hardware that we use is Dell EMC.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The manual efforts of creating a VM for an individual customer has now been eliminated, e.g., creating a template or blueprint. With Orchestrator, we will take that blueprint and build a form for the customer. All this used to be done manually by an administrator, from a network, storage, and compute point of view. The admin's job is simple now versus the way we were doing it before.

    It provides a single pane of glass for management. These types of platforms help us to have a holistic view.

    The solution has helped us to automate deployment for developers. Before developers have to build another virtual machine, they can run code with VMware Code Stream integration. They can verify and download code, which really helps our developers be faster.

    vRA has enabled us to derive value from the cloud more rapidly. We have seen increased services along with more integrations and catalogs. Now, we can create and update policies faster. 

    The solution has freed up our time to concentrate on other things.

    What is most valuable?

    • vRealize Orchestrator
    • Catalog Service

    The policy control is excellent. There are multiple security controls that we can achieve by using this tool. When we were siloed, the policy implementation and control were difficult.

    We use the solution’s following DevOps for infrastructure capabilities:

    • The cloud templating standard for VMware Cloud infrastructure
    • VMware Cloud Templates
    • Infrastructure pipelining for continuous delivery
    • We partially use iterative development for GitOps use cases, as it is not very good.

    These capabilities boosts our administration and management from a technical point of view and help our team maintain the solution. Reliability improved because now the CI/CD and DevOps are integrated and managed under the same team using the same software.

    What needs improvement?

    They should concentrate on navigation and service improvements.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have been using it for more than two years.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    From the inception and kick-off meeting, VMware has been very professional from a project management standpoint. They know what their goal is and have all the ground work done. They have a dedicated Project Manager. They know what kind of resources that they need, so it happens in a very timely manner. We don't have any complaints from a VMware product management standpoint, because they are all professionals. 

    I would rate the technical support post-deployment as a 10 out of 10.

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

    Prior to using any VMware products, we had Cisco UCS Director. 

    Prior to vRealize Automation, we had VMware vCloud Automation Center, or vCAC. It was not a mature product. At that point in time, everything was working in silos and the integration was difficult because the APIs were not mature. After we did the automation upgrade, this embedded everything, so it now has one single URL for accessing all applications. 

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup was straightforward. From a product point of view, it is seamless. The code runs. The software is built into all the appliances, then everything is deployed automatically and integrated with the scripts.

    There are commercial implications to start up vRA if a company has no hardware nor knowledge of the product.

    Our deployment was one month. Integration and completion of the migration took another two months. Put together, it took us a total of 90 days to implement and start using it. 

    What about the implementation team?

    For the initial setup, there were four people from my organization involved:

    • One SME from compute and storage
    • One SME from network
    • One SME from application
    • One technical project manager.

    What was our ROI?

    We have seen ROI. The more VMs that we create, the more services that we are creating for our customers. Our delivery times are reduced, so we have more productivity.

    The DevOps for infrastructure capabilities has saved time for our developers by automating processes and reducing provisioning time. Task time has been reduced by 40 percent. 

    When it comes to IT operations, 40 percent of our time has been reduced because of Code Stream.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    From a budget point of view, the pricing is a bit on the higher side.

    We did need to purchase some new hardware for the cloud because we wanted to upgrade it.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    While we evaluated other options, vRA made it easy and quick for us to go with this solution as an existing VMware customer. With new products, there are training implications. Also, VMware is one of the market leaders.

    What other advice do I have?

    If you are already a VMware, definitely consider the cost implications of going with vRA versus a competitor.

    VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) is 100 percent mature on the private cloud. We don't have any issues working on it.

    We are using other solutions from VMware to extend our network security.

    Training is a continuous process. 

    I would rate this product a nine out of 10.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    AK
    Sr. Cloud Automation Consultant at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
    Consultant
    Top 20
    Automated our manually processes saving us time. Needs to reduce custom coding during setup.

    Pros and Cons

    • "We provided the ability to request virtual machines to our end users. Before, this was a very manual process, which took engineers to do. Now, it's an automated process."
    • "VMware needs to make it to where it is not as custom. Right now, you spend a lot of time making the services work. In order to get it up and running initially, that takes time."

    What is our primary use case?

    Our use case is infrastructure automation, like self-service.

    We utilize all the blades that we had available in the computes, mostly going into VMware vCenter.

    When I have been using it, it has been mostly for private compute.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We provided the ability to request virtual machines to our end users. Before, this was a very manual process, which took engineers to do. Now, it's an automated process.

    vRA has enabled us to leverage existing VMware processes, systems, and training in our organization to support IT ops. 

    What is most valuable?

    Most valuable thing is that it's flexible. You can do anything with coding.

    What needs improvement?

    VMware needs to make it to where it is not as custom. Right now, you spend a lot of time making the services work. In order to get it up and running initially, that takes time. I would like it if they didn't require custom code and we could get it running out-of-the-box.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using vRA for about five years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Stability is pretty important. For example, if the platform goes down and people can't provision anymore, people are relying on the automation versus old manual processes.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Our developers and IT consumers use it as well as other infrastructure teams.

    vRA is the means for 90 percent of our infrastructure requests. There are use cases where things, like big data or bare-metal, don't necessarily provision this type of stuff.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    The service of VMware during our deployment was average; I wouldn't say VMware support is exceptional.

    Post-deployment, it takes time to get to the right people in order to get proper support.

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

    We did use a previous product, but integrating it with VMware was very custom.

    How was the initial setup?

    There is complexity to the setup. You have to custom write code for any integrations. It took six months to make it end user ready.

    What about the implementation team?

    There were about 10 of us involved in the setup. We have just a cloud team.

    What was our ROI?

    We have seen ROI from replacing manual processes with automation.

    vRA has helped to automate deployment for developers. The solution increases developers’ responsibilities and productivity because now they can provision their own VMs and focus on the code.

    The solution’s automated processes have reduced infrastructure provisioning time. Automation takes the time down to about an hour. Whereas, it could take days if it was done manually. This time reduction also applies to vRA's automated processes, which have reduced application provisioning time.

    The solution has reduced time to market for our apps. It takes the burden off of our internal processes, which can now provision VMs in an automatic fashion.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    It is pricey for what you get. Nutanix is cheaper.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We did not evaluate other options.

    What other advice do I have?

    Make sure you give yourself enough time to implement or replace all your use cases as a business.

    The solution requires specific expertise with it to be able to use it effectively.

    I would rate this product as a seven (out of 10). 

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    AC
    IT Consultant at a government with 5,001-10,000 employees
    Real User
    Top 5Leaderboard
    Gives you flexibility to analyze and consume resources

    Pros and Cons

    • "vRA has enabled us to derive value from the cloud faster. It is five to six times faster than traditional solutions."
    • "The initial setup was complex from beginning to delivery. The current version is a bit more complex than version 7 to deploy."

    What is our primary use case?

    The goal was to bring the automation process to our customers using virtual machines. We were looking to do the hybrid connection with AWS. 

    It can run on Linux and several versions of Windows that we have.

    How has it helped my organization?

    It gives you the flexibility to analyze and consume resources.

    vRA provides a multi-cloud, self-service, infrastructure-as-a-service cloud consumption and delivery layer. We have a connection and activation between AWS and Azure. 

    There is the possibility to use the central policy, especially using Active Directory. You can put this process into the company so someone can follow it. I can put this control on-prem and outside of our on-prem, using our cloud solution.

    What is most valuable?

    You can consume resources into the data center and hybrid with AWS.

    I can use the console with the dashboard. I also have access to the portal from Azure.

    We use the cloud blueprints for Linux. I can use different templates on-premise and on the cloud via GCP. We can use traditional templates or develop new templates, using them to manage integration with the solution.

    What needs improvement?

    In the future, I hope to use a portal from GCP.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using it for approximately five years. During that time, we have used versions 6, 7, and 8.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    This solution is used by six sysadmins.

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

    This was our first solution of this type.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup was complex from beginning to delivery. The current version is a bit more complex than version 7 to deploy.

    Our deployment took two days.

    What about the implementation team?

    Six people from our company were involved in setting up vRA.

    What was our ROI?

    vRA has enabled us to derive value from the cloud faster. It is five to six times faster than traditional solutions.

    It is easy to deliver IT support when compared to a traditional solution. With vRA, I click it, open it, and then it is available in a few minutes. It saves time because a traditional solution might take two to three hours where vRA takes a few minutes. It's a big difference.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We analyzed the market. We also looked at OpenStack, which is similar in its functionality to vRA. We chose vRA because of its integrations. Integrations were more difficult with OpenStack.

    What other advice do I have?

    I would recommend doing an integration with hybrid cloud. With vRA, this is excellent.

    I would rate this solution as an eight (out of 10).

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    TE
    Cloud and Automation Manager at a comms service provider with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    Helps in democratizing tools so that our end users can work efficiently and be more agile

    Pros and Cons

    • "Having an enterprise service catalog and being able to automate various parts of our infrastructure are among the most important components."
    • "It needs to be more dynamic with variable customization to make new workloads more reliable. It also needs to be faster. We are exploring vRA version 8 right now and maybe what I'm requesting is available in the new version, but we haven't yet explored it fully."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are using it for infrastructure service, automating things in Active Directory, and deploying Microsoft SQL and Oracle databases. We are also using it to automate some scenarios within our infrastructure.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Having a one-stop-shop for our IT services is one of our goals. Exporting and democratizing the tools helps our end users to do their work efficiently and to be more agile. It helps to minimize the time to market for our product.

    Using the solution we are able to automate database refreshment. This process used to consume a number of working days. With vRA fully automating this process, it is now down to five or 10 minutes. As a result, we're able to refresh our testing and development environments frequently. When we go with a new deployment in production, the deployment is based on a fresh copy of production. We're able to have multiple environments so that we can test more product concurrently.

    We use VMware Cloud Templates and having a standard template to be deployed gives us a standard across our environment and minimizes the time it takes to provide services. Despite having 20 machines, we just do the configuration once and then we can deploy it across the whole infrastructure for all environments: production, testing, and development. And this reduces the time to market for our services. They improve reliability. They give us consistency. Having things assembled and having everything in one image helps us provide reliable services. And they have saved time for our developers.

    What is most valuable?

    Having an enterprise service catalog and being able to automate various parts of our infrastructure are among the most important components.

    What needs improvement?

    It needs to be more dynamic with variable customization to make new workloads more reliable. It also needs to be faster. We are exploring vRA version 8 right now and maybe what I'm requesting is available in the new version, but we haven't explored it fully yet.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have been using VMware vRealize Automation for seven or eight years.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    VMware's customer support for vRealize Automation is good. They are knowledgeable about the product and have improved their response time. The support is fine.

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

    We did have a previous solution but I am not able to disclose its name. vRA is an end-to-end solution with all the capabilities.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The pricing is very high.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    Flag as inappropriate
    Product Categories
    Cloud Management
    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free VMware vRealize Automation (vRA) Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.