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Server Engineer at a retailer with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Good high availability, easy to scale, and pretty stable overall
Pros and Cons
  • "The solution has high availability."
  • "The biggest pain point is probably the firmware management of the underlying hardware. It could be a lot better."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for everything Microsoft-related for the most part. I would say our visualization platform is about 99.5% of all our workload from a Microsoft point of view

What is most valuable?

The solution has high availability. 

The on the fly changing of the resources on a VM is very helpful. 

You've got the underlying capacity, that's greater than what the actual server has, and therefore you have the ability to do on the fly add capacity. I would say that's by far the thing we use the most. 

The VRS, to a lesser degree, is also quite useful to us. It does work in the environment. 

The solution is very good from a recoverability point of view. Everything can be stored much easier on a virtual server than on a physical box. 

What needs improvement?

The biggest pain point is probably the firmware management of the underlying hardware. It could be a lot better.

We use HP hardware. The biggest thing is the firmware upgrades and other items at the backend. You have to take down the system. It's an in-memory database and that can sometimes cause issues. If you have to do firmware upgrades, it's organizing downtime and all sorts of things, which normally in a VMS space isn't an issue. They have embedded some of this in 7.1, however, I haven't tested it or seen it in action as yet. 

That said, one of the problems is that when we're sort of behind big memory servers and the databases in them if you migrate it, it potentially breaks the system off. That's a big pain point that the firmware management of the underlying hardware should handle. VMware doesn't really cater to it, however, Nutanix to some degree does cater for. It gets pretty expensive, however.

We are always sort of one or two versions behind. We never test the latest version. I would say for me personally, the management aspect with large memory and in-memory databases for the motions and stuff like that is what it needs. That's one of the key things that I need really, from a support perspective. That's caused a number of issues already. 

You do get something called host profiles, which they've also improved slightly, however, I still think it's a bit clunky in terms of the way you can manage it. They can produce something to improve that aspect slightly.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for more than 12 years. It's been over a decade at this point.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is mostly stable.

We've had issues, however, if you think about it, it's quite complex if you look at stuff like a three-tier architecture with different stories, subsystems, and things like that. It's not really VMware if it's unstable perhaps. 

VMware itself isn't necessarily unstable, however, they might present as a VM-ware issue due to the fact of the storage latency or a driver issue. We did a firmware update and VMware itself I think is quite stable. Every now and again, there's an issue that creeps in, however, it's because we use different vendors for storage and a different vendor for computing. Overall, by and large, VMware is very stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

From the way we set it up, it is relatively easy to scale as long as you've got the planning in place for where you're going to. We use something called blade technology, and that is relatively easy to scale.

There's a total of ten people that are actually on the solution at any given time.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've used technical support a couple of times. I'm quite happy with it. We've got an agreement with HP. We offer our support via HP or via Data Centrix with HP. Durin the couple of times I've used it has been quite fast and thorough.

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

I've never used a different solution. I started using VMware or VMware server, about 20 years ago. vSphere ESX is probably the first visualization tool I've used. Subsequently, yes, we've tested one or two other options, for example, Hyper-V and what used to be called Acropolis. We've also used Oracle VM. However, for production and for everything else we've done, we pretty much speak to VMware. It's tried and tested and we're quite happy with the stability. Therefore, we stick with it.

How was the initial setup?

If all your hardware requirements are met, it is a relatively simple implementation. However, you have to have the boxes ticked in terms of connectivity, capacity, and all that sort of stuff. The actual VMware part of it is not the biggest complication of everything now.

We handle maintenance ourselves. My team consists of five people, and of those, only one of them really works on the maintenance of the hardware and the software. It doesn't take a lot of personnel.

What about the implementation team?

Initially, we did use a vendor for the initial setup. That's even before I started at this company. The company uses their local vendors to output the hardware deployment and with the software deployment, however, it's my understanding that it's been done in-house mostly.

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

It's not a cheap solution. The maintenance specifically is quite expensive. I also find that it's more expensive than the higher tier products. 

We've looked at buying into something like a vROPS or whatever they call it today. However, when you look at the cost and the benefits, although there is great benefit in the product, it's just never been a cost discussion that we've been able to entertain with management. 

Similar to vSAN, we looked at that a couple of times. It's a great product and it has proven itself. It's brilliant. It's stable. However, as soon as you look at any peripheral products, it becomes quite expensive, as it's licensed per socket or per blade or per server or whatever. 

What other advice do I have?

We're just customers.

We are a little behind the latest version, which I believe is 7.1. We're using 6.5 for the most part. We still have a little bit of a legacy in 5.5, however, that is just hardware related. It doesn't support the newer version. We trying to rectify that as soon as possible.

I would recommend the solution to other companies.

Overall, I would rate the solution nine 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.
IT Infrastructure Lead at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Stable, with good resource management, but needs to allow more access to documentation
Pros and Cons
  • "The most valuable aspect of the solution is the resource management from the OVM Manager."
  • "You need to have a model for documentation available for the users. Right now, if you have to search for some troubleshooting, you need to have Oracle login. Many personnel might not have that login. The reach, the availability of information to the end-user, is not there."

What is our primary use case?

The solution is primarily used for server virtualization. We have opportunities that we want to learn from. For our customers, we recommend this product. We have Oracle databases or Oracle, Linux, or Red Hat Linux to run it on a virtual machine, and Oracle VM fits perfectly into that.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable aspect of the solution is the resource management from the OVM Manager. It makes document management very smooth. The performance is excellent.

What needs improvement?

I'm still evaluating the product and getting to know it.

The only thing I'm finding is that the backup software, which is supporting Oracle's virtualization platform, needs improvement. We're struggling to get a solution that will support my Oracle virtualization environment for backup purposes. I just found one on the internet. I was trying to reach out to that team now, to see how best we can use it. However, if Oracle had a solution to this, that would be ideal.

You need to have a model for documentation available for the users. Right now, if you have to search for some troubleshooting, you need to have Oracle login. Many personnel might not have that login. The reach, the availability of information to the end-user, is not there.

There are some articles that are publicly available, but there are some important documents that are not available to the public. You need to subscribe, or you need to have a licensed copy, some subscription with the product.

Any product, at the end of the day, needs support. When the support or the knowledge base or the information is not available or the documentation is not available for any of this, for the person who is implementing this, it's very difficult for them to get used to this product. They will simply move to another product.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for two or three months now.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution certainly is stable. We don't seem to suffer from bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash or freeze. It's reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is very easy to scale.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've never reached out to technical support, so I can't speak to their level of service. I tend to handle troubleshooting myself.

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

I have experience with Hyper-V, VMware, and Citrix ZenServers.

The technology is all similar. It's about virtualizing the servers. However, I feel that VMware is much better and much more stable than Oracle VM.

How was the initial setup?

At first, the initial setup was not so straightforward and was rather complex. This is largely due to the fact that we were not aware of the environment and how to use it properly. I believe it will get easier to implement over time.

You need to deploy the server and have the virtualization on top of that. Then you configure and install everything. How long it takes depends on the environment. If it's a small deployment, it may only take about two days. A larger deployment could take as long as six to eight weeks. 

I've done a file server deployment, and that only took three days.

You only need one person to deploy the solution.

What about the implementation team?

We are consultants. We assist our customers with implementations.

What other advice do I have?

We're partners with Oracle. We're consultants.

My advice to other potential users is this: nothing is better than planning. It's much in a better way to start a project. That way, you understand how much it is that you need to have or how many servers you require. It seldom matters when you deploy in the virtual environment. 

You need to be very hands-on in Linux environments. I come from a Windows background. I am not a Linux user, for the most part. That said, fo this project, I learned Linux.

I'd rate the solution seven out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
Michael Ewhe
Enterprise Server and Storage Administrator at a financial services firm with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Top 5
Flexible, rugged, user-friendly, and easy to understand
Pros and Cons
  • "It is quite flexible and rugged. It is also easy to understand and user-friendly. It is not as complicated as some of the other solutions. It has its technicalities, but it is easy to understand. You can easily pick up in a short period of time and understand how to manage the infrastructure."
  • "I am not very sure about how flexible Citrix Hypervisor is with different types of infrastructures. I only know it is flexible with Nutanix, but I am not sure if it is also flexible with others. They can make its integration with other platforms or OEMs easy. They should also make it easy for users to manage their infrastructure. Citrix should make compatibility information related to a hypervisor easily available in a datasheet. Citrix isn't really recognized in this part of the world, and they need to expand their solution and make it more available. There are a lot of customers and companies that are looking for a solution like Citrix, and it should be available in this part of the world. They need to educate people more. Technically, it is good and flexible and has good ability, but it is not as much known as VMware or Microsoft. Their support should also be improved. Currently, if you don't have an updated version, they will not give you the attention."

What is most valuable?

It is quite flexible and rugged. It is also easy to understand and user-friendly. It is not as complicated as some of the other solutions. It has its technicalities, but it is easy to understand. You can easily pick up in a short period of time and understand how to manage the infrastructure.

What needs improvement?

I am not very sure about how flexible Citrix Hypervisor is with different types of infrastructures. I only know it is flexible with Nutanix, but I am not sure if it is also flexible with others. They can make its integration with other platforms or OEMs easy. They should also make it easy for users to manage their infrastructure. Citrix should make compatibility information related to a hypervisor easily available in a datasheet.

Citrix isn't really recognized in this part of the world, and they need to expand their solution and make it more available. There are a lot of customers and companies that are looking for a solution like Citrix, and it should be available in this part of the world. They need to educate people more. Technically, it is good and flexible and has good ability, but it is not as much known as VMware or Microsoft.

Their support should also be improved. Currently, if you don't have an updated version, they will not give you the attention.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for about eight years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is pretty stable. We have recently upgraded to a newer version. I used 7.6 for a long time, which was very stable in spite of being end-of-support. In terms of stability, they are doing a good job.

How are customer service and technical support?

We currently have a problem with technical support at our location. We don't have so many Citrix support companies or partners. We have just a few of them, and it is pretty difficult to get support and talk to Citrix directly. For this, two things are involved. You need to have the latest updates of infrastructure, and you should have got the support license. Otherwise, you can't get support from them. If you don't have the updated support or version, they will not give you the attention, which is a problem and a shortcoming.

I had to call them because we had a disconnect with our storage, and due to that, we lost a lot of data. I couldn't get support from Citrix because they informed me that I was using an older version of the solution. This is one of the shortcomings, so we had to work on the issue internally to resolve it. We had a backup, and we were able to restore everything,

How was the initial setup?

It is easy and straightforward. It all depends on the hosting platform. You need to be sure that the host is actually compatible with the version of the hypervisor that you're using. It matters a lot. If you're not using the right or compatible infrastructure, you may run into some problems. Citrix should make this information easily available for people in a datasheet. Most of the time, you have to go online for this information. It should be easily accessible for the users so that they can easily find information about compatible platforms. 

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

I am fine with their license support. What we have right now is permanent, so I don't have a problem with their license.

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend this solution for user endpoints or desktops. I would rate Citrix Hypervisor an eight 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.
IT Manager at a government with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Easy to use, stable, and reasonably priced
Pros and Cons
  • "The solution is very convenient and easy to use."
  • "The solution needs to improve the methods used for starting and stopping the machine."

What is our primary use case?

I primarily use the solution to build a machine and transfer it to vCenter. I also occasionally use it to transform from a VirtualBox machine to an ESXi machine.

What is most valuable?

The solution is very convenient and easy to use.

I tend to use it for personal use, and I also use it for testing the Fortnox platform and it works very well.

The starting and stopping of the machine are much faster than other solutions.

The pricing is reasonable.

What needs improvement?

The solution needs support for the USB 3. 

The solution needs to improve the methods used for starting and stopping the machine.

The product needs to make dramatic changes to the guest machines. For example, they need to improve changing the disks, and the resources used and to make the back and forth transfer to other platforms like Nutanix, VMware, or Microsoft.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for five years now.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is very stable when you start the machine. We don't experience bugs or glitches. It works quite well.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The personal version isn't so scalable. You have to shut down the guest and change the parameters and restart the guests.

How are customer service and technical support?

The solution leverage a passionate user community that is very, very informed. There's lots of documentation within the community that is quite helpful.

I've never actually contacted Oracle directly. I rely on what's online to assist me when I need to troubleshoot something.

I did, however, use the official support for VMware, and I took advantage of insights I could find from their community as well. I found VMware lacks clear documentation for a lot of items, especially if you were integrating with virtual storage other than VMware or Dell.

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

I've previously worked with VMware and Workstation. In those cases, the starting and stopping of the machine took far too long. Oracle is much faster.

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

The pricing is lower for VirtualBox. It's much cheaper than VMware, for example, which has very high pricing in comparison.

What other advice do I have?

We're just Oracle customers. We don't have any business relationship with the solution.

We're using the latest version of the solution.

While I can recommend the solution for personal use, in a professional context, I've never actually tried it. A company would have to do some research first to ensure it fits their needs.

I'd rate the solution eight out of ten overall if I was rating it on personal use alone.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PrimozBergant
System Engineer at Unistar
Real User
Top 20
A stable solution that offers good control over hardware resources
Pros and Cons
  • "The most valuable feature is the flexibility in terms of managing the hardware resources such as RAM, CPU, and the network."
  • "The interface is not user-friendly in places, so it could use some improvement."

What is our primary use case?

We are a system integrator and IBM PowerVM is one of the solutions that we implement for our clients. I am not a solution architect, but I provide assistance with PowerVM.

It is primarily used for business-critical operations like SAP or Oracle databases.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the flexibility in terms of managing the hardware resources such as RAM, CPU, and the network. 

What needs improvement?

The interface is not user-friendly in places, so it could use some improvement.

If PowerVM were cheaper then it would better compete with VMware vCenter.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for five or six years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have not seen any issues and I think that stability-wise, this is quite a good solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution architect in our team has not complained about the scalability.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have involved technical support in the past when we have had issues and I think that they are good.

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

We are also supporting VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V.

Customers generally choose IBM PowerVM when they have a great demand for stability. However, they sometimes choose VMware because it is cheaper.

How was the initial setup?

With respect to the initial setup, if you know the terminology then it isn't too complex. It should nonetheless be done by somebody with a technical background.

The deployment takes approximately 14 days.

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

The price varies from case to case and you have to negotiate it for every project. Pricing and licensing policies are not completely transparent.

What other advice do I have?

My advice to anybody who is researching this type of solution is to choose PowerVM if they want something that is really stable. I think that it is the only answer because the other solutions have perhaps evolved too quickly. We have seen issues with VMware and especially with Hyper-V. Hyper-V is not a mature platform.

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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