SAM Can Be Your Friend Too
November 02, 2018
SAM Can Be Your Friend Too
Score 9 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with SolarWinds Server & Application Monitor
SAM and I go way back. It's been used to monitor the health of MS Exchange 2013 and 2016. I've used it successfully to keep an eye on MS SQL servers and IIS applications. That's not all I've done with SAM. We use it to get daily disk space reports, trends, forecasts on usage, and to look at how system resources are affected by new application installs. Everything. It keeps us ahead of the curve.
- Easy to configure over other solutions. Works with the built in MS SQL Express. Easy to migrate to SQL standard if needed.
- Easy out of the box reports. Most of what you want to know is there from the get-go. Sometimes you need a different angle and the report writer is your friend.
- Alerting isn't confusing. Other products sometimes don't make sense when they send an alert out. SolarWinds SAM can tell you exactly what is up, down, warned, and you can link the alert message right to the node with the problem. Get email. Click. There. Simple.
- While it is generally easy to get going with SAM and the Orion platform, getting into the weeds can be difficult and overwhelming.
- SAM opens the door to monitoring and reporting on a verity of things. I think Orion is designed to leave things out so you buy more.
- Fine tuning thresholds can be confusing. SolarWinds defaults on somethings that don't make sense in a real environment. But not all environments are the same. They could give you more guidance.
I've only used SAM to monitor on-premise applications. I don't have much to say about cloud apps yet.
SAM has been able to help us identify failing services and application. It's been able to help us correlate errors and unwanted behavior with usage and resources.
- Uptime has increased from the past, and it's a total win to have the reports to prove it.
- SolarWinds isn't cheap. Lets just say that. They seem to always have an aggressive discount available though.
- Knowing where to look when a problem is happening is great. Knowing what's happening before a real problem sets in is golden.
I've tried other monitoring systems before. Nagios and the free version of PRTG have been used in the past. Even had OpManager once. Spiceworks always got me close. I've worked at associations, non-profits, and for-profits. Everyone wants the most they can get for as little as possible. When it comes down to it, SolarWinds always wins. For me, it's because it does more than get the job done. It's not about doing the minimum. It's about doing what's important for the organization. Cannot forget about the THWAK community and SolarWinds support. Call them on the phone. Do it. They will help you get your problem solved quickly.
Perfect for Windows and Microsoft environments. It can monitor Linux as well. It will definitely help ID where a problem is occurring or might occur. SAM gives visibility into the health and behavior of servers and applications where simply looking at logs and CPU isn't enough to get a full picture. SolarWinds is great at trending data.