DPA makes finding the cause of database problems almost too easy
March 22, 2019

DPA makes finding the cause of database problems almost too easy

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with SolarWinds Database Performance Analyzer

DPA is being used by DBAs at Incomm Digital Systems which is a department of Incomm. It allows the DBAs to monitor production SQL Server databases for IDS. We count on DPA to alert us in case certain database-related thresholds are exceeded as well as do analysis on troublesome queries.

Pros

  • Excellent at being able to key in quickly on pain-point queries.
  • Very clear and easy to understand user interface.
  • Nice availability groups dashboard that shows how far behind each database is from synchronization.

Cons

  • Email alerts are pretty much a DIY proposition. The canned email alerts are a mixed bag. Some work, while others don't.
  • The usual Windows performance counters (CPU, Memory, etc.) are on the main dashboard. It would be nice to see IO counters there as well.
  • Most drill-down query screens are displayed vertically, but a few are displayed horizontally. It would be nice if they were all displayed vertically.
  • We had a production database performance issue where DPA not only showed the problem stored procedure quickly, but showed that it was being executed much more than usual.
  • During planned outages, DPA does a good job of estimating when databases will get resynced in the AG. This is helpful for Management for their communications.
  • Being able to find under-performing queries easily, means that DBAs can bring that information back to the developers for refactoring. This makes for better performing code, a better performing application, and happier customers.
We reviewed the database monitoring tools from Idera and SentryOne. Both of those tools are very performance counter-centric which is pretty common. DPA is the only one that focuses on wait statistics to analyze queries that are running on your database servers (current and historical). We selected DPA because it is much easier and faster to find the root cause of database problems.
DPA is very well suited for analyzing problem queries and showing the wait statistics associated with those queries. It makes it very easy to see how they have performed over time. Most of the other database monitoring applications focus on performance counters. DPA focuses on wait statistics. If you are looking for a performance counter-centric monitoring solution, then you will find DPA appealing.

Configuring SolarWinds Database Performance Analyzer

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