Overall Satisfaction with SolarWinds Server & Application Monitor
Solarwinds SAM is our IT department's monitoring software. It allows us to proactively address server and system application issues before they become critical. It alerts us via email when we are not actively watching its output. It provides ultra deep insight into the inner workings of mission critical applications. It keeps a history of our system's health and allows us to produce pretty much any report you can think of. It also, allows us to create custom views of the monitored systems so we can control what a specific user or group can see.
- The ease of creating a custom alert is really incredible. Something that may take 30 minutes in Nagios takes only 3 minutes in Solarwinds.
- The custom views are incredibly useful for meeting the demands of specific department and execs to be able to see only what they want to see of the systems being monitored.
- The Thwack community is a to-the-point technical forum with real-world usable solutions by novice and veteran Solarwinds users alike. Its resources include the actual code/plugin needed to take advantage of the solutions.
- The learning curve can be steep. With so many granular, customizable options, it can be overwhelming.
- The default alerts issue too many emails that sound unnecessarily urgent and are sometime misleading, like saying the Domain Controller is down when a user account gets locked.
- Some of the products in SAM are also included in other Solarwinds products making choices sometimes difficult.
- Downtime has been reduced by enabling us to foresee resource exhaustion.
- Solarwinds has made us aware of issues that we didn't know we had.
- Its steep learning did cause us to take a hit on initial tech time needed to get it going.
While Nagios was an extremely through and capable product, the time required to properly customize the product was discouraging. Once you learn how easy and fast it is to create a custom monitor or custom alert or custom view in Solarwinds, then you are pretty much sold on its usefulness and time saving value.
Solarwinds SAM is going to be very well suited for any larger organization that has the budget for it as it is not cheap. The licensing model is such that one SQL server, for example, uses 50 application monitor licenses. Once the company gets beyond 750 licenses or so, I think, then it becomes wise to pay for the unlimited licensing model...also not cheap. A very small organization may not be well suited for Solarwinds.