4+ year user loves the product for specific tasks, but has accepted some fairly major flaws as reality
Philipp Beisiegel | TrustRadius Reviewer
December 19, 2019

4+ year user loves the product for specific tasks, but has accepted some fairly major flaws as reality

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager

NCM is being used within our department as well as the department responsible for the design of the network. NCM is being used to push mass changes to all of our network gear and to enforce configuration standards. It is also being used as a recon tool by running show (recon) commands on gear to have a quick but detailed look across the organization.
  • Configuration Standardization
  • Quick and Mass Configuration Changes
  • A better implementation of using variables in jobs would be awesome.
  • Being able to take the output of a command and feed it into a second command.
  • Negative: ACL Updates: Since we had a slight variation in our naming convention of an ACL that we use to filter where you can SSH from when we pushed the update it ended up breaking 80% of our devices that had the ACL as lower case instead of uppercase like we expected. This locked us out of these devices and we had to drive 1000's of KMs to each device and manually fix them. This was partly user error but if the tool had the ability to take the output of a command such as "sh access-list" and use the output to execute the next command, the variation in naming would have not been a problem.
  • Positive: IOS Upgrades: We had a security vulnerability and a software bug start to affect our service on roughly 3000 switches. Being able to say run the upgrade command on 3000 devices and reload them saved months of our worker's time and condensed the work to about 4 nights. We only made it 4 nights in case there were problems, we didn't want to affect all the switches, but no problems arose and in less than a week we had done 3000 IOS upgrades which is a major money and time saver.
We had a security vulnerability and a software bug start to affect our service on roughly 3000 switches. Being able to say run the upgrade command on 3000 devices and reload them saved months of our worker's time and condensed the work to about 4 nights. We only made it 4 nights in case there were problems. We didn't want to affect all the switches, but no problems arose, and in less than a week we had done 3000 IOS upgrades which is a major money and time saver. We run a complete Cisco shop so we have not experienced any multi-vendor situations.
We have automated weekly backups kick off that back every device to a SFTP server that's on our offshore data center. This put us in a much safer position when devices fail and is completely automated.
  • Engineer's Toolset
  • SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager
  • SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor
  • SolarWinds Netflow Traffic Analyzer
  • SolarWinds VoIP and Network Quality Manager
  • SolarWinds Kiwi Syslog Server
These tools work very intergrated and make managing our large infrastructure very easy and convenient most of the time. We can quickly see what device is having a problem and what that problem might be doing to impact services fairly quickly.
We have not tried any further tools.
NCM is great at pushing a generic script to multiple (100+) devices quickly. If you need to change your DNS servers on every Cisco Switch, it's super slick. But, if you need to change every access port in VLAN 5 to VLAN 55, NCM struggles really hard to interpret the output and be able to use that data efficiently.