SEM review of a SolarWinds fanboy at heart
October 23, 2020

SEM review of a SolarWinds fanboy at heart

Tim Short | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM)

We are currently using it within our Operations team to monitor events and alert others of security events and anomalies that it detects. I would like to recommend this product to any business needing to increase their security posture and get better alerts and more reliable data to look at to assist with the root cause and security monitoring.
  • Automated threat detection
  • Log collection
  • Live filtering
  • Custom rules
  • Alerting can be confusing to configure
  • The dashboards and widgets look a little old as with all SolarWinds products
  • The initial setup can take a lot of time
  • It has given our helpdesk and ops team more capabilities with less training and access.
  • It gives a lot more insight to what the users are doing now that they are working from home
  • Allows for a central tool that works with our other SolarWinds products to give a better view of our entire ecosystem of computers.
We picked SolarWinds because of the better price point, integration with other SolarWinds products, and the ease of training. Because we were already familiar with the SolarWinds way of doing alerts and reports, it made this product a nice fit for our company and it has great capabilities built in to give our team a feeling of being more secure and to help deter possible attackers.
I am not sure about the alternatives but for us we had to increase our licenses count to have the ability to record all the sources we needed and to allow for the growth but the pricing was not to bad for us to upgrade and keep everything monitored properly
Our interaction with SolarWinds was a great experience they assisted us every step of the way with the implementation and configuration of the product to our satisfaction. Once the setup was done our Ops team took over and they are very happy with the functionality of the product
I like the ease of creation of the dashboards but I think they all have the same "old" looking style as with all solarwinds products they work well but they all look like they were made in the 90's and need a facelift so all of my issues are purely cosmetic.
Yes! that is a great value of this is that anyone can use it you don't need to be technical you just need a simple under standing of the way the product works and the time to play with it. Once you have that you can make any dashboard you want.
It is great for using the automated response to log off users or detaching a USB device to assist with keeping your end-user devices safe in the workplace and from home now that people are doing more of a home office has a tool that can monitor what is going on on the desktops is a big plus and giving our OPS team the ability to kill a malicious process without giving them more training or privileged account to assist with stopping malicious users. There is not as much of a learning curve due to the fact that we already use the Orion products by SolarWinds making this product easier to learn.

SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) Premier Support

Every time I have had an issue with SolarWinds products they have successfully assisted me and went beyond normal service by showing me what educational videos from their training would help me to further my knowledge to not have the same issue next time I am working on that part of the product
When I was migrating Orion to a new server and upgrading the SolarWinds database we had all kinds of issues. We called SolarWinds for assistance and they gave us a temp licenses for the migration period and assisted us with migrating the database with out any loss of data and we had it back in production with in 4 hours.

SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) Smart Start

SolarWinds onboarding is excellent and they offer a lot more assistance than other companies from my experience.
Self-help and virtual training - I really am a fan of how SolarWinds has their own online library of self-help and how-to videos you can use to train users and help share knowledge across the organization to help everyone be trained and have an understanding of the product and because it is online the users can watch it anytime they need to.
I was not directly involved with this onboarding but from what the team tells me it was an amazing experience.
I would estimate that we save around a week of work at least with this because of all the tweaks and tricks we were not aware of. I am sure we would have had to remove and reinstall a few times due to user error on this setup I would recommend this to anyone buying this SolarWinds product.

ROI

I don’t know how much time was saved - I am unable to fully answer this question based on my experience with SEM but from my limited experience with it I can see it saving a lot of time the more you use it and familiarize with the product and the more you utilize it in you environment
1 points (e.g. from 98% to 99%) - This great tool assisted with spotting potential issues before the became a major outage and a major downtime. We were able to fix many small issues with less resources and have the system running more smooth and it helped to keep it that way and will help prevent future issues.
  • Price
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Product Reputation
  • Prior Experience with the Product
  • Vendor Reputation
  • Existing Relationship with the Vendor
  • Positive Sales Experience with the Vendor
  • Analyst Reports
We decided to use the SolarWinds product because we are really satisfied with the SolarWinds product line and they always make great products. I would recommend this product to anyone especially those who are familiar with other SolarWinds products and have prior experience with SolarWinds. Security event manager is a great addition to anyone already using SolarWinds or even for people who have never used SolarWinds before.

Using SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM)

4 - Our organization has 4 people that monitor this on a daily basis and they all work in our Operations center they monitor all of the SolarWinds events. They monitor our similar products to watch for intrusion and unpatched machines along with seeing traffic patterns by the users and server traffic.
2 - We have 2 people that monitor it and they are utilizing the SolarWinds training to learn how to better use the product.
  • Monitor for security incidents
  • prevent major network outages
  • keep everyone notified about potential issues
  • Fix minor issues before they become major issues
  • train more users to help with monitoring
  • alerting and automation to resolve issues

Do you think SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) delivers good value for the price?

Yes

Are you happy with SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM)'s feature set?

Yes

Did SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) live up to sales and marketing promises?

I wasn't involved with the selection/purchase process

Did implementation of SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) go as expected?

I wasn't involved with the implementation phase

Would you buy SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) again?

Yes

Evaluating SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) and Competitors

I would add a few more people to watch the product demo and maybe have more than 3 products I am reviewing. I am also partial to SolarWinds so I kind of limited myself and my options without realizing it. I would suggest getting a vendor who is agnostic to suggest multiple products to compete with it.

SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM) Support

ProsCons
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
No escalation required
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
Not kept informed
SolarWinds customer support has always been amazing and extremely willing to help. They also are great at providing a library of training and videos to further your knowledge and help you learn more about your product. The support team has helped us with data migration of other products and upgrades and they kept at it and stayed with us until the project was done.

Using SolarWinds Security Event Manager (SEM)

If you are familiar with SolarWinds then you can use this product it's as easy as that. If you have never used a SolarWinds product then it will take a minute to get how they do reports and make dashboards but that being said the tool is great and can make things very easy once you get a feel for how it works and get everything setup how you like it.