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PRTG Network Monitor Alternatives and Competitors

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GB
Sr. Network Security Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 10
Builds and updates network topology in real time, making that information immediately available

Pros and Cons

  • "One of the best things about Auvik, and it's why it's one of my go-to products, are the remote access capabilities. Without a VPN and without any other way in, I'm able to get in and work on and troubleshoot my devices through the remote access console. It has multiple options for that and has been very useful and a huge time-saver. That's one of the killer features. It's one of my must-haves and that's why I like it so much."
  • "The automated, out-of-the-box device configuration backup capability is one of the key features for me in Auvik. To manage a network, one of my key requirements is to be able to rebuild that network if something catastrophic happens. Having up-to-date backups is a must, and this is a tool that I count on to get that right, and it has always performed as I expect."
  • "The logging features could be a little bit better polished, although that aspect is relatively new. It comes in as raw data, with different formats for different vendors. It's not immediately clear to people what's going on with some of that and you have to read through the codes. Some of the higher-end logging solutions, like Splunk, which is very expensive, can parse through it and correlate items better. Improvement to the logging features would be a value-add, but I'm still very happy that it exists."

What is our primary use case?

I do internal IT for a company and I use Auvik for most of my daily tasks as they relate to firewalls, switches, and routing.

How has it helped my organization?

The automation of network mapping enables junior network specialists to resolve issues directly and helps to free up senior-level team members to perform more involved tasks. It can be a key tool in environments where somebody who doesn't have a strong network skillset can go in and see, "Is it good, is it not?" and be able to make a decision on whether it needs to be escalated to me or not.

It also automatically updates network topology. One of the things that I really enjoy doing, when I first get into a new environment with it, is to watch it rebuild the map as it learns in real time. I can see its process and for me, as a very technical guy, that is one of the most entertaining things to watch, as it learns and updates the changes in a network in real time. It saves time maintaining network topology since the tool actually does it automatically. I have a high level of confidence that the information is correct, and it is immediately available. Just last week, I got a call from one of our internal auditors who needed to provide some information. He said, "Yeah, this usually takes a few weeks. Can you provide firmware information and serial numbers?" During our phone call, I was able to get into Auvik, pull the list, get it sent over to him and say, "Here you go. We're done."

Auvik has also decreased our mean time to resolution. Being able to go in and look at what's not broken, very quickly, and get that confirmed, means that I can look at what I actually need to fix. It eliminates a whole bunch of other problems and a whole bunch of checking. It has reduced our MTTR by up to 80 percent in some cases.

And because we've got it triggering PagerDuty alerts, if something problematic really fires off, I will know about it and be in the tool looking at what's going. I can say, "Hey, this is a problem we need to alert," or, "This isn't a problem and we just need to be aware," very quickly.

Another benefit is the TrafficInsights feature which shows network bandwidth usage without the need for expensive, in-line traffic decryption, and it does it very well. That is a very nice-to-have in my current role because we don't have issues with our network bandwidth. But in other environments that I've been in, where there were issues with bandwidth, it is a very well-put-together tool allowing me to find the answer and say, "This is what our problem is." It enables me to tell the business that we either need to spend more money on bandwidth, or we need to deprioritize a certain type of traffic. It gives that information in a format in which I can give it to somebody who is less technical than me. I can show them the graph and say, "This is what's going on and why."

TrafficInsights helps to show you where your system is experiencing performance issues around capacity and what is the busiest traffic. It can help improve network performance by letting me know exactly what's going on. It lets me see whether it is an application misbehaving, a lack of bandwidth, an upgrade that we need to make, or a configuration. It gives me these choices so that I know for real what's going on. In some cases, people "feel" that something is going on, but this gives me the facts to know what's going on. I would estimate TrafficInsights has improved our network performance by 50 percent.

In multiple environments I've been in, we've been able to eliminate other tools and use Auvik as our single network management solution. In those environments, I've had up to five tools that I have been able to decommission by using Auvik. In that environment where there were so many tools in place, replacing them probably saved $100,000 a year.

What is most valuable?

Some of the key features that I get out of it are that it is a well-rounded monitoring solution, so I know when something fails—whether it's a device or a service on the device. But it also performs backup, in inventory, of some of the key things to control and manage the network.

And one of the best things about Auvik, and it's why it's one of my go-to products, are the remote access capabilities. Without a VPN and without any other way in, I'm able to get in and work on and troubleshoot my devices through the remote access console. It has multiple options for that and has been very useful and a huge time-saver. That's one of the killer features. It's one of my must-haves and that's why I like it so much.

In addition, for products in this category, Auvik's ease of use is one of the best. It's really built for people like me. I'm heavy into the parts of IT that are not server-related, including routing, switching, firewalls, et cetera, and it is organized for somebody like me. It is the network engineer's toolset. It gives me what I need upfront in a way that I understand well. Auvik speaks my language.

When it comes to its network discovery capabilities, It is the best that can happen. I've used it in multiple environments, and as long as I've got the right starter information, it can go find information in an hour that would otherwise take a person weeks. It's very good and very quick. I've been able to benchmark it against competitive tools and it is way more useful, giving me information that I actually need and can use.

The automated, out-of-the-box device configuration backup capability is one of the key features for me in Auvik. To manage a network, one of my key requirements is to be able to rebuild that network if something catastrophic happens. Having up-to-date backups is a must, and this is a tool that I count on to get that right, and it has always performed as I expect. I am able to very quickly and easily audit that the backups happen and I know that they're there. I can also restore to a previous point with very little hassle, if anything goes wrong. Compared to other backup solutions, it saves me 80 percent in terms of my time.

What needs improvement?

The logging features could be a little bit better polished, although that aspect is relatively new. It comes in as raw data, with different formats for different vendors. It's not immediately clear to people what's going on with some of that and you have to read through the codes. Some of the higher-end logging solutions, like Splunk, which is very expensive, can parse through it and correlate items better. Improvement to the logging features would be a value-add, but I'm still very happy that it exists.

There are a few edge cases where I have found support for devices to be a little bit lacking. I'm migrating away from Check Point right now and Auvik and Check Point do not get along at all, so it was very troublesome to get those put in place.

Another issue that I know is already in progress, but that will be very nice, is full integration with PagerDuty. I'm using email connectors right now that have a little bit of a lag, so once the APIs are in place between Auvik and PagerDuty, it will give me better alerting when something breaks. I know that's on the roadmap because I've talked to them about it.

For how long have I used the solution?

Between two different companies, I've been using Auvik for about three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The availability is 99 percent. They do have maintenance windows where it's not available. I've been happy with their communication on the maintenance windows and they pick the times very well when it's not going to be available. I realize that everyone needs maintenance, but it works out very well.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I've used this for everything from companies that are in a single building up to a company that had offices in 20 time zones with almost 100 offices, some of them with 1,000 users, and it was able to scale up to that. I've never had worries about how big this can go.

How are customer service and technical support?

Their technical support is fair to good. There have been a few times where I've had to escalate to somebody higher, when I thought the lower-level person should have understood it, but I've always ended up with a good answer.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward and, as far as the product category is concerned, it's the most straightforward. I've used this in an MSP environment and I've done deployments into close to 30 companies with Auvik and it is, by far, the fastest way to do it for a fresh deployment.

We can get the initial install going in a few hours and we can be confident in the data in a week or two. Comparing that to other tools, it would be an initial deployment of a week or two and two months until we're confident with our data. It has probably reduced the time spent on setup by 90 percent. And when dealing with an MSP, it cuts down a client onboarding by at least a month, which lets revenue start coming in earlier.

The implementation strategy depends on the size of the environment that we're going into, but we usually put in collectors at key locations and first let them do their discovery and see what's out there. Then we'll tune them down so that the collectors are monitoring from the right locations. But we like to get as much data in as possible, initially, and then tune downward.

As a cloud-based solution, it requires just about no maintenance and that's one of the other benefits of Auvik. With other solutions, we have spent more time updating and babysitting the servers and fixing our tools, instead of fixing our environment. That's a major plus.

What was our ROI?

When I was first evaluating it and we were going through pricing models, I was able to make the case that, for a team of five, this would be better than adding a person to the team when it comes to getting work done.

When I was new in this environment, I was trying to get a lot of stuff together. I brought Auvik as a solution to my supervisor and said, "This is what we used at my last company," and he was familiar with my last company. He viewed them as very good at what they do. I suggested we take a look at Auvik. As soon as he got the pricing during the first sales call around Auvik, he said, "Sold. Well worth that money." They didn't even have to finish the presentation. He saw what was being offered and he also based his decision on the fact that I'd used it before. The cost easily made it worth it in his mind for what it would provide to us.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is fair for the value and time saved that you get out of it. The larger you go, the more sense it makes per device, because as you hit different pricing tiers, it becomes much more affordable per device.

Auvik is billed by network device. They've got a very clear-cut definition of what is a device and what isn't a device, and that's very convenient. Anything like a server, or a phone, or an access point, is not billed but they are still captured for data, which is very useful. Auvik is very upfront that the solution is not a good server monitoring platform, but it's a fair server monitoring platform and that comes along for free with everything else. My server guys have another system they use for monitoring servers, but they find being able to look at Auvik as well has been a huge value-add.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I have used LogicMonitor, PRTG, the N-central suite, the ManageEngine suite, and the SolarWinds products.

In terms of the differences between those solutions and Auvik, I would summarize them this way: Auvik is a tool built for the network guys, primarily, whereas a lot of other tools are built for the server guys first and then add in network. It's a tool really built for what I care about and it values my time. I'm able to get it put in fast, I'm able to use it fast, and my information is fast. It lets me do more with less.

What other advice do I have?

Definitely go through the proof of concept testing. The results speak for themselves. It's a fully rounded product and everyone I know who has used it has been happy with it.

When you're first deploying it, understand how you need to set up your locations. Otherwise, you're going to end up redoing work. If you're in a larger environment, you need a little bit of knowledge about where things are to be able to put stuff in the right places. If you're small, you can just drop it in and be super-happy with what it gives to you.

Overall, compared to everything else out there, it's a solid 10 out of 10. I haven't found anything that gives me what I need better.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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AashishGiri
Chief Technology Officer at Leads Innovation
Reseller
Top 20
Gives us a single, consolidated view of our system, network, and ITSM requirements, while helping us achieve ISO certification targets

Pros and Cons

  • "The role-based dashboards provide data points and charts and topology diagrams in a single window. It's like a spider web, where the application, connectivity, and everything is defined for each user of those applications."
  • "I would like to see an integrated view of Infraon IMS and Infraon Desk. It would be very helpful if that were integrated into the solution."

What is our primary use case?

We have been using it to monitor our data center services, including servers, storage, and all our security appliances. We have a 24/7 NOC operating at our data center and they have been using Infraon IMS extensively for network and data center monitoring.

We also are using Everest Infraon Desk to manage our assets, our incident management system, and our ticketing system, and it's helping us to achieve our ITSM rules.

It's on our own private cloud.

How has it helped my organization?

We were using a lot of open source products to manage our ITSM. We didn't have asset management. We needed to have a network monitoring solution and we needed to have a system monitoring solution. We were using a lot of tools in our data center. That meant that our NOC and system guys had to maintain all these different kinds of devices, and maintaining those products was a headache. With Everest, we have a single, consolidated view of our system, our network, and even our ITSM requirements, like asset management, change management, and incident management. We are even using their ticketing system for our organization. It's been a great help for us in terms of managing our ITSM policies. 

In addition, it has helped us to achieve our ISO certification targets for which we need to maintain all incident management and incident reporting. We can also find an SLA report for our appliance.

We have also tested the workflow management, to try to find dormant VMs, machines that haven't had any traffic or that are not being used by customers; or if there are any VMs that are using very high CPU or memory or choking our network bandwidth. We're also monitoring NetFlow to see the traffic behavior of the VMs: What kind of traffic have they been using? We're using these workflows and NetFlow monitoring tools to zero in on the VMs, if there are any infections going on or if there are any management activities going on that have been using our infrastructure.

What is most valuable?

What I really like about it are the details that it provides whenever we click an icon or any of the objects on the dashboard. We get a detailed description. We're running 200-plus VMs in our infrastructure. If I click on any of the symbols I can see detailed information about a VM: the traffic, the resources utilized by that VM, and whether the SLA is being met by that VM and the services. That is visible on the dashboard. It's just a few clicks and you get all the details as required.

There are role-based access policies defined for our employees. For example, at the L1 level, we define the policies that they can view and the devices they can access. They can only view them, they cannot edit. Our higher-level guys can edit, add devices, and they can create multiple dashboards as required. This is important because each person in our NOC or our data center has specific, targeted goals. Some of the network admins only require seeing network traffic utilization. Some will require port utilization. They may require specific ports and specific devices to monitor a single application.

For example, we have a database system and we need to monitor the underlying network infrastructure related to it, as well as the application related to it. We created a customized dashboard and handed it to the application custodian or database custodian of that system so that he can get an overview of the condition of all the infrastructure that he is using.

We have set a role-based access policy for network admins and network operators so they will only be monitoring VPNs, network device connectivity, and all the tunnels. We are connected with multiple internet service providers, so we can monitor which of them is using a lot of traffic and where the traffic is coming from. 

The role-based dashboards provide data points and charts and topology diagrams in a single window. It's like a spider web, where the application, connectivity, and everything is defined for each user of those applications.

The granularity that Infraon IMS provides to us is really spectacular. If we see a VM in what may be an unhealthy state, we drill down and see what the issue is, whether it's a memory issue or a CPU issue, what time it was triggered, and how it was recovered. All these kinds of measurements are available via drill-down from an events list base.

In addition, the GUI is very interactive and customizable, because the dashboards are customizable. There are two parts to the GUI. One is the operation part where we can see reports and customize them. The other is the admin part where you can add devices. That has to be very quick because we are adding new devices every day, and it is very helpful. We are pretty satisfied with the GUI.

We were also amazed by the reporting capabilities. Previously, we were using open source monitoring systems, like Nagios and Cacti, and we were having a hard time with them. You need to customize each and every module and every parameter to generate an intuitive report view and a summarized query. So getting analytics or doing capacity planning was difficult. With Infraon IMS we're happy with the number of reports and the granularity. And its summarized view of the infrastructure helps us in planning.

What needs improvement?

In terms of improvements, I would like to see an integrated view of Infraon IMS and Infraon Desk. It would be very helpful if that were integrated into the solution.

In terms of additional functionality, a feature they may have but that I haven't been able to find is the ability for a manager to see all the tickets of his subordinates. It would be good if a manager could see every incident ticket, even those not assigned to him. That way, a manager could see every incident ticket that has been opened in the organization and assign them to individuals.

For how long have I used the solution?

We've been using Infraon IMS for more than six months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I have not seen any hiccups since the deployment. There haven't been any issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not scaled it that much, but per the information that I have, and from what we have seen in the infrastructure and system, increasing resources or trying to add modules is not too difficult. Because we were not previously using NetFlow monitoring, we added a small module for NetFlow monitoring, and the system was scaled out for the database sizing to retain the NetFlow sizes. It was straightforward.

Regarding expanding use of the solution, because we are providing services to our customers, we want to create a type of tenant-based model and sell it to our customers.

In addition, as of now we are only monitoring the infrastructure that we are handling, like data center services, meaning our infrastructure. We're planning to enhance it so that all our data center colocation customers can also have their own ITSM tools.

How are customer service and technical support?

As far as I know, the experience with their technical support has been very wonderful. Whenever we have had any queries, they have responded promptly. The technical guys are in touch with our project team all the time. Whenever they need any plugins or tweaks, they have been helped by the Everest technical team.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We were using open source tools, like Cacti and Nagios, and we were using another solution for our ticketing system. We decided to switch because there are limitations with open source. We had to have a dedicated team assigned to the open source solutions and that team had to manage the system. There was a lot to tweak with open source, per our organization's requirements. 

We had Cacti for network monitoring to provide a graphical representation. For SLAs we needed to maintain a Nagios system where we had to add all our devices and network monitoring tools. We were also using a separate asset management tool which was not fully functional. It was a separate system and we needed to train our guys on multiple systems. It was a pain for the operation team, and the NOC team also had to look at different consoles and different solutions to find any compliance issues.

And the ticketing system also created a lot of impact, because previously we were using a plain vanilla ticketing system that was open source and not very feature-rich. It was just a basic ticketing system, and generating reports to get any analytics on incidents required a lot of manual work.

With Infraon IMS what we have found is a single pane of glass to view all our network monitoring requirements for our NOC system. 

How was the initial setup?

The setup was pretty straightforward for our team because Everest sent a guy who helped us to develop the infrastructure and that helped a lot when it came to the initial deployment.

They required some VM cloud infrastructure information, like space and sizing. We had to prepare those machines before deploying the solution.

We had our guys trained on it within a week or so. They understand the architecture, as there are a lot of components built into this solution. There are databases, collectors, and some network connectors. But it's pretty easy to learn Infraon IMS because there aren't too many components that you need to set up.

Within a month or so our ticketing and NMS were already deployed.

As of now, our whole NOC team of 10 to 15 guys is using the solution. Our system team, which has about another eight people, is also using it, as are the executives to generate asset, compliance, and SLA reports.

What about the implementation team?

We assigned two of our staff to the deployment, one from the network team and one from the system team, and the Everest guys were aligned with that. They helped our team to get it deployed and, in the next month, we rolled it out to production.

What was our ROI?

We have not done an ROI calculation yet, but I'm seeing a lot of impact as a result of the deployment of this infrastructure, with our guys needing less time to manage the NMS solution itself. We have a technical pool that manages our system and the operations of the data center. When they need to spend all their time managing the NMS system, we're losing all that time. Now, they don't need to focus on the management tools. They can monitor another customer and do other work. It's saving a lot of time for them, something like 20 to 30 percent of their time.

We had a lot of tools and products in the data centers and we were getting bogged down. All these solutions required resources and our guys needed to be trained on them. Whenever someone would leave, we needed to train the newer guy. It was creating a lot of havoc.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is reasonable, given the features that they provide. There have not been any additional costs beyond the standard fees.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked into ManageEngine, PRTG, and other tools. But for our infrastructure and our scale, we required something that could be scaled out and something that was customizable. We also needed something to provide us with ITSM tools, a help desk with workflow and a ticketing system.

We also evaluated Zabbix about a year and a half ago but the deployment cost was very high. It was going to take more than two months to deploy. Our guys were not so aligned with or trained on Zabbix. They would find it very difficult to manage all the plugins. So we opted not to go with open source.

With Infraon, we get a one-stop view of all infrastructure and every ITSM requirement that we have, from a single vendor and solution. It had good reviews in the international market also. We came across it because we had proposed it to one of our customers and we saw that the customer was very happy. While managing the system, we found that it is a very helpful tool.

What other advice do I have?

We don't use Infraon IMS to automatically trigger processes to help resolve issues when it detects compliance violations, but we have triggered reports. We don't want any automation as of now, so we are only using manual intervention to take any actions. We need to be sure about our workflows. Once the actions are tried and tested then we will put in the automation.

The biggest lesson I have learned is around the consolidation of all our NOC and ITSM requirements in a single solution. We were only looking for an NMS solution, but they provided us with a workflow, automation, a ticketing system, and an incident management system. It has been a revelation for us.

Overall, it's a wonderful one-stop ITSM solution for infrastructure.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor. The reviewer's company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Reseller.
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AN
Senior Network Engineer at Element Critical
Real User
Top 20
Good Performance Analyzer feature, excellent access to knowledge base resources, and very stable

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution is extremely stable. We haven't had any issues in that regard. We haven't had issues with bugs, glitches, or crashes."
  • "In terms of scalability, there is room for improvement. When you start monitoring, if you have so many interfaces and you're trying to monitor them at a faster interval, or a shorter interval, you get to a point where you need to request another node."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily used the solution for routers and switches.

What is most valuable?

The "Performance Analyzer" feature is the solution's most valuable aspect. It's able to do the bounded graphs of all the interface stats, from errors to broadcasts and to current traffic. With a click of a button you're able to, in one interface, look at historical data for those items.

From the troubleshooting point of view, just having that peace of mind is great. I think it was kind of a neat feature they added. However, it obviously depends on who's using the platform. I use it as a troubleshooting tool mostly for historical data. That's kind of why I have a monitoring system. We rely heavily on that. We are supposed to be on 24/7 so if some resource is knocked out we can just do troubleshooting using historical data. Performance Analyzer was one of the core features I thought was pretty cool.

What needs improvement?

The idea that you can automatically trigger alerts from the TRAPS received is still something that still hasn't really taken off or worked properly. We have to manually go into the database and create SQL queries or SQL queries, to be able to match those and trigger those as alerts. On the engine itself, the Orion platform, just being able to receive the TRAP and generate the alert or something like an alert is a manual process.

We have all of these other networks that rely heavily on their own vendor protocol for monitoring, and then what the vendor has in place is just a place to be able to northbound, whatever it received to another server. 

It becomes tricky when you're trying to, for example, dry contact monitoring for power, etc. Those are not necessarily your network, they're using dry contacts. Just analog. The vendor needs to get all the information, and then put it into a format that actually works to be able to be received by other networks.

Basically, it's just important to have some sort of TRAP alert generation. There's no point of us trying to do queries into the database.

For how long have I used the solution?

Before I joined my current company, I had been using SolarWinds for about six years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is extremely stable. We haven't had any issues in that regard. We haven't had issues with bugs, glitches, or crashes.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

In terms of scalability, there is room for improvement. When you start monitoring, if you have so many interfaces and you're trying to monitor them at a faster interval, or a shorter interval, you get to a point where you need to request another node.

If you have a router that has over 400 interfaces, you need a very robust server. If you don't you'll end up running into issues.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've never really reached out to technical support. I understand that it's alright. The very few times I've needed assistance, I was able to get some things from the SolarWinds page and their knowledge base. That's where almost everything you would need is found. 

For the most part, I've not had issues that required me to go past their knowledge base. The other thing is, when people do try to reach out past the knowledge base, the support staff always bounce back with a question like "Hey, did you check the log?" It can be frustrating because obviously you've looked and that's why you're calling. Because the answer isn't there.  

For the most part, they do a great job of having people share stuff on their knowledge base. Once you get access to that, most of what a general user would need is on there, if they running into something. The few times I've actually worked with support, it was in relation to something that was related to an enhanced feature. The experience, overall, I'd say has been okay.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is very straightforward.

It's easy. A user can download the file, then they simply click the installer and it provides simple step-by-step click-through style instructions. It's been very intuitive for the most part. Before installation, it's important to consider space requirements, resources for the server, etc. before jumping in. Users will also need to consider (if they're running netflow) whether to save the data on the email server or not. It's possible to run out of space that way, however. There are various guidelines, however, at the end of the day, the installation process isn't complex in and of itself. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I no longer work at the company that uses Solar Winds, so I don't have information about what they were paying or what they pay now. The current package I'm using myself is a free package as I do a comparison between PRTG and SolarWinds.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We're in the process of doing a comparison between SolarWinds and PRTG. 

What other advice do I have?

At my old company, we were always using the current version of the solution. We'd like to keep up to date with the latest releases. The company even changed over when there was a move from a 2012 Windows server to an updated version of Windows (16).

We had a single server located in one location and all the other devices were networked. Sometimes SolarWinds was used as a slot receiver and trap receiver for some of those devices that have their own "NMS" (network managed system). It's not really proprietary, but we had a northbound interface to be able to send syslogs or TRAPS. SolarWinds was used as the one central location to be able to receive and process alarms and alerts for any trigger actions.

I'd rate the solution eight out of ten. The solution is kind-of expensive, but at the end of the day, it's quite robust. It has several great functionalities. It has groups, maps, almost everything. It's just a matter of the price point that makes it somewhat prohibitive.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
KM
Network Engineer at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 10
Helps us determine what is going on with our Internet

Pros and Cons

  • "It helps us determine what is going on with our Internet and who is hogging it all up. If we get a real high throughput or a throughput that's going over and getting dropped fairly quickly, we can tell who (or what device) is consuming that traffic."
  • "I wish the reporting side was easier to work with, but it does a decent job. I also wish the reporting side was a little more intuitive or they offered more reporting examples."

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is monitoring bandwidth and being able to go back and look at bandwidth issues.

We are on the latest version.

How has it helped my organization?

It helps us determine what is going on with our Internet and who is hogging it all up. If we get a real high throughput or a throughput that's going over and getting dropped fairly quickly, we can tell who (or what device) is consuming that traffic. That was our main use case for buying it to start with. Going forward, we will start using it for other stuff too.

We have only had it a couple of months, so we've not really dug into it a lot, but being able to know bandwidth is the main thing.

What is most valuable?

  • Being able to monitor VPN user traffic has been nice. 
  • Being able to monitor interfaces, in general. 
  • We do a little bit of reporting, but we're just getting into that.

What needs improvement?

I wish the reporting side was easier to work with, but it does a decent job. I also wish the reporting side was a little more intuitive or they offered more reporting examples.

Their user videos could be a little better. They provided me a couple of training videos, but they were very generic in nature. E.g., if they had training videos specific to Cisco or Palo Alto firewall to give training to show you specifically within Scrutinizer what you could be looking at. They did provide a basic and an advanced training video. However, even the advanced training video doesn't break down into detail, and on the configuration side, that would be nice.

For how long have I used the solution?

We've had it about two months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't had any stability issues with it at all. I haven't seen it flake out or experienced database issues.

I'm the only person who maintains and upgrades it.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is easily scalable. I haven't seen any issues with it.

It is in full production. It monitors several firewalls, like Cisco Firepower, and IPS.

We only have three users who are using this solution as end users. We are all network administrators. It gives anybody within our group the ability to troubleshoot it easier.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support was good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We have Splunk, but Splunk doesn't give us the type of info that this does. Splunk is really clunky and hard to use. We still have Splunk, but we use it more as a security means for network means.

We have used the free version of PRTG, but that solution was clunky.

How was the initial setup?

It was a pretty straightforward setup. I wouldn't call it complex.

The deployment took about four hours. We still expanding on it though.

What about the implementation team?

I did the deployment.

What was our ROI?

We have seen ROI.

The solution has helped to reduce the time to resolution for network and/or security events by 50 percent.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

There are no extra costs. It's about $8,000 a year. The bang for the buck (cost) is definitely a plus.

They gave us a 30-day license. We did a 30-day demo. We installed it, knowing that if we bought it, we could just add a license and continue on. So, we did a 30-day PoC, and they gave us good support during that time.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

The solution has been around for a while. The monitoring of our firewalls was the driving concept for choosing it. They did well with demonstrating that ability.

We evaluated Cisco Stealthwatch, but it was so cost prohibitive that we did not go that route. It was about 10 times more expensive than Scrutinizer. Cisco Stealthwatch was very clunky and use. The menus were very different. While you could get a ton of information, you really had to dig to get it. There was some better features obviously, because the cost is a lot higher. It's more of a security network product, but it was hard to use and cost prohibitive. Also, we saw that its ongoing maintenance to keep it running would be a nightmare. There was a lot you had to do to keep it working correctly.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate it an eight (out of 10).

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
JP
IT Senior Systems Administrator at a tech consulting company with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Old, clunky, and with unresponsive support, this product touches the basics but not in style

Pros and Cons

  • "It handles the basics of monitoring."
  • "It is stable."
  • "The product is old and not updated."
  • "The interface needs some work."
  • "The technical support does not bother to respond."

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case is just for monitoring the host servers, the virtual machines, the network equipment, and the storage. It covers all the basics.  

What is most valuable?

Probably the only sorta valuable part of the product is that it is stable, easy to work with, and covers the basics. But there is a lot more downside to it in my opinion than up.

What needs improvement?

Honestly, I do not particularly like WhatsUp Gold. I think we should get rid of it. It is so old. It has not been upgraded in about six years. The interface looks like something from the nineties.  

I am quite used to using the Paessler AG product. That is PRTG (Paessler Router Traffic Grapher) and the two have little in comparison. It could be improved by being more like PRTG.  

If WhatsUp were going to work on updating the product, I would like to see some improvements in the interface. The dashboards could be a lot better.  

For how long have I used the solution?

The company that I work for has been using WhatsUp Gold quite a lot more for the past few years but they have had it as a solution for the past 10 years. I have only been in the company for about six or seven months.  

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

One thing good about WhatsUp Gold is that it is fairly stable.  

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have got about five or six people working with it right now. Their roles are mostly system administrative staff. It is used daily in our current situation.  

How are customer service and technical support?

When I first started, I did contact the technical support team to see whether I could get the new version of the product, but no one ever even bothered to reply. So obviously the technical support could be also improved.  

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have used a few of the different monitoring solutions at different companies. PA Server Monitor was one that I used and that was by Power Admin. I used to work with PRTG (by Paessler AG). It is quite a good product. Spiceworks is another one I used.  

If we are talking about a comparison between the ones I have already used and WhatsUp Gold, PRTG is a better product. It is the best one I have used out of all of them. I would be interested in moving to that instead of WhatsUp Gold.  

How was the initial setup?

I have got a few virtual machines on it that I use myself. It is not a very complicated product. It is a bit clunky and takes more steps than it should do, but it is not difficult to set up and use.  

It takes approximately 10 minutes to set up. It does not require a lot of maintenance. It has been on-premises so it is not exposed to the internet and because of that it is not much of a risk. But maintaining it is just a long way down the priority line at the moment.  

What other advice do I have?

I would not recommend WhatsUp Gold to people who were considering it as a solution. On a scale from one to ten where one is the worst and ten is the best, I would rate WhatsUp Gold as a four or five. Really, it is a four-out-of-ten.  

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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