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This product reached the end of support date on March 31, 2021.

What is the difference or similarities between Dynatrace Saas, DCRum, and vmWare vRealize Network Insight?


What is the difference or similarities between Dynatrace Saas, DCRum, and vmWare vRealize Network Insight?

We have implemented DCRum and AppMon, and currently working on a POC for Dynatrace Managed. Our sys admin team is also doing a POC on vmWare vRealize Network Insight. Is the vmWare tool and DCRum similar?

Dynatrace Certified Professional

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Dynatrace Pro

Wow, a long shot, but let me try:

DC RUM is of course the best APM solution on the planet and there’s no reason why anybody in the known universe would ever need anything else in the APM space:-)

Seriously speaking, vRealize Network Insights (Vernie) and Dynatrace DC RUM differ a lot and in reality are complementary. Operational end to end performance management and system design (including capacity planning) would need both. Same is true about AppMon and Synthetic - application performance control needs both, for different purposes. Let’s stop at DC RUM versus Vernie:

  • DC RUM looks at the real users of any apps delivered from the private data centers (on-prem or in the IaaS cloud, or hybrid). It focuses on apps and users, all-apps portfolio and all users, al delivery means like Citrix, WAN-optimized networks etc. DC RUM continuously discovers all applications of all users from the wire data and applies app-sepcoific measurements based on deep analytics of the app-specific network protocols.
    • Long story short - it will tell which specific transactions of specific app, (transactions known by their auto-discovered names), are executed by what users (known by login names) from what locations and with what performance, and if these are not performing - where is the fault domain: server response time (for transactions by specific names), encryption layer (SSL delays), load balancer issues, WAN optimization efficiency and delays, network latency and quality, TCP flow challenges (client chocking etc).
  • Vernie knows how network data flows within the VMware system. It works off the IPFIX flows generated by the VDS, so it knows volumes between machines, hosts and DCs, with breakdown by VLAN/VXLAN and client and server machine whereabouts. It has no visibility into end user experience for the apps that are delivered to the end user desktops, browsers, mobiles etc. It has no knowledge of the app transactions, user names, etc. But it knows what are the network flows and bottlenecks within the virtual environment.
    • So if DC RUM points its finger at server response issues, ops has to look into both app infrastructure, code and interconnections (think Dynatrace SaaS/Managed!) and the design of virtual network overlays that tie it all together (this is where Vernie excels).

In the other words, use case defines what tools and usage sequence makes sense, and what to use when

  • Operational management: start with Dynatrace, also using DC RUM to include the DC edge visibility into the app delivery channel quality to end user locations, then if the issues root down to the DC side (as opposed to the app delivery tiers and the client network) use Dynatrace and/or AppMon to clean out the app infrastructure and code issues.
    • Use Dynatrace Network Agent (part of the OneAgent) to assess whether virtual networking influences the app data flow within the virtual infrastructure. If so - engage Vernie to analyze flows, configs, paths though overlays and physical underlays.
  • Planning: if you know the requirements already, use Vernie to plan the virtual network design. Follow up with Dynatrace to verify it in pre-prod and add DC RUM in prod to cover app delivery channel (like WAN, Citrix etc) and those apps where agents don’t fit.
    • If you don’t have data for planning - use DC RUM to discover all apps and their edge-side (WAN) traffic and usage characteristics, add Dynatrace to understand app dependencies in the environment, so you’d have data to start with Vernie.

Dynatrace SaaS and Managed are just the ways of hosting and deploying the same solution, so I wouldn’t be going into details here, which are mostly on the availability dates of the synthetic monitoring component for Managed (will come out soon, while for SaaS it’s already available).

Best regards