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What advice do you have for others considering SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager?


If you were talking to someone whose organization is considering SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager, what would you say?

How would you rate it and why? Any other tips or advice?

ITCS user
66 Answers

author avatar
Top 5LeaderboardReseller

The NCM is a very useful tool for managing your network device configuration backups as well as configuration security checks. The configuration security compliance works best for Cisco devices, though would like SolarWinds to expand this to other vendors too.

Other good functions of NCM include - configuration templates (example configuring NetFlow on devices en-mass), executing set of commands on devices, integration with NetPath

author avatar
Top 5Real User

This solution works in conjunction with SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor. Usually, you first buy SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor and then SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager. You have to go with both. I would recommend this solution. Typically, while recommending a solution, I look at what the management needs in terms of strategy, how a solution integrates, and how powerful is the IT department. Based on that, I recommend a solution that meets the needs and integrates with ITSM. I would rate SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager a seven out of ten.

author avatar
Top 5Reseller

Larger organizations would be able to have people invest the time to learn how to use the system and deploy on their own. Smaller organizations would need an integrator to help them through the deployment process. We definitely plan to continue working with this solution. There are less popular devices that are not directly supported by NCM. You have open-source Linux devices that you really can't support with NCM. They have their own tool that you have to use. We have a couple of those, but generally, NCM is a tool we use for the majority of the well-known brand network purposes. My advice to others who want to use this solution would be to get it if you have a network with several departmental devices to take care of. Do an early set up of your approval process to make sure that change management is built-in. If you have several people with the admin password who are able to go in and make changes to all your devices at one time, it makes the entire system much less stable. You need to ensure that you put in all of the controls very early on, and have levels of authorization for change. This should be done very early when you deploy the system. I recommend using SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager. I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

author avatar
Top 10Real User

Just make sure you only put the nodes that you need to monitor and make sure whoever needs to have nodes in SolarWinds, keep the people besides your team or your group, who want their own nodes there. Make sure you set up the right rules and the standards and the thresholds where you need to get communication for error messages or CPU alerts or power heat or any type of alerts. The alerts, they need to be very clearly addressed in order for you to monitor your devices. We have faced some problems in the past that the alerts are not really set up properly. We have to randomly change the thresholds and the numbers and the ranges. I would recommend that you make sure you monitor only what you need to monitor. Make sure if you need to trigger those alerts, make sure that you have somebody or a team to respond. And, they can have a group responsible for whatever they need to troubleshoot. I would rate it at a seven out of ten.

author avatar
Top 20MSP

We are using version 7.9 of the solution. We migrated from 7.7 to 7.9 about three years ago. We use both the cloud and on-premises deployment models. We had production on the on-premises model in 2016. I'm an implementation engineer for SolarWinds so I'm not using the NCM devices any longer. I'd advise others who may be installing the solution for the first time to just use the 7.9 version of the solution. It's the latest version. If you are using FortiGate you'll be able to configure everything and have a backup and be able to use the data. I'd rate the solution eight out of ten.

author avatar
Top 5LeaderboardReseller

We use the on-premises deployment model. We're a SolarWinds distributor. I'd rate the solution nine out of ten.

Learn what your peers think about SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: November 2021.
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