Solarwinds RMM - My experience

Hello everyone,

2nd post here. We have been with Solarwinds RMM now for about 6 months. The interface is great, prices leaves a lot to be desired and the unexpected 4% increase, which I still haven’t gotten an email about, is another elephant in the room. I know Tom spoke about this and how it is justified to keep moving forward. We can easily push in the cost to a customer contract. That is almost nothing. Costs go up every year. The two issues I have with the price increase:

  1. Its 4%, last increase I saw with anything cloud/software based was 2%.
  2. Its in 2 months. Not gonna like, we have a minimum of 1 year contracts. None of those contracts end or are up for renewal in March for us. So we will have to eat that cost until renewal.

Here are the issues that I have had with Solarwinds:

  1. Patch Management is broken at best. We have manually fixed most of the machines by re-installing it. But, support stated it is a bug they are working to fix. What happens is Windows devices check for updates and bypass our patch filtering. So updates are being installed that we haven’t approved. We had a 20% fail issue that is due to corrupt Windows updates. These are the updates that even Microsoft states can break a system.
  2. Billing/Invoices: We are on NET30 terms with Solarwinds, which is great. But, its now January. We don’t see any payments posted to any invoices since August. As an FYI, for now we pay by Credit Card, so the payment comes out immediately. We need receipts for these payments for tax purposes. Other people have similar issues from what I can see on Reddit and Groups on Facebook.
  3. Account Rep: My account rep…well, he is pretty much the worst rep I have seen from any company we have ever dealt with, even outside MSP/RMM software. Literally, the one and only time he contacted me was to sign a contract so I could lock in a price. He isn’t like my other reps from other companies that we used, who contact me religiously at least once a week. I’m okay with once a week, because its usually not for sales, just to check in on us.
  4. Roadmap: Still haven’t seen a good, solid, justified roadmap from Solarwinds.
  5. Integrations/Site issues: So, we have issues in the past 2 months with the website/dashboard breaking. It will take us to pages that don’t exist on the gfi side of things. Kind of odd considering that merger happened a long time ago.
  6. MAV/Bitdefender integration: I’m pretty sure on initial on-boardings and installs for our customers, there is less than 20% chance that the installer for bitdefender/MAV will succeed and install properly. We usually have to go back in a day or two, remove and re-add the feature, then retry the install. That usually fixes the issue.

Other than that, the remote control, reporting, monitoring, dashboard, and backups have been amazing. What, if any issues, have anyone had? What do you like about this platform?

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Hi Schmarvin,

I’ll start off by saying that I can’t speak for all of these points, but I can on a few.

Q1. With Windows 10, we don’t really trust any patch management to play nicely with Windows updates. We allow Windows machines to install their patches and then we check Patch Management to make sure these patches installed. Very little filtering is needed (at least for our clients). When filtering is needed, we add undesired patches to the ignore list. Patch Management is also useful for patching supported third party applications (Java, 7-Zip, etc.).

Q6. Part of our process for on-boarding is doing a quick cleanup on customer’s computers. One thing we make sure to do is uninstall all other AV products and reboot. This has worked well for us. Usually if we have had a problem with the MAV installing, this was back when Vipre was the engine. Bitdefender has been very solid for us.

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Thank you for your input. I understand with the patch management and Windows 10. But we have a lot of customers on Windows 7 still. On some customers, it works fine, others it doesn’t. As far as the AV goes, even on a brand new computer, with no existing AV, its a 50% chance of failure. I think it started when the last upgraded the base version of the RMM’s Bitdefender.

So I’ll second Kyle’s comment on Q1 and Q6. We don’t turn off Windows Patch management, however we do set by GP to delay patches until the weekend. This helped us a great deal with the last SMB patch mess. We’ve set SW PM to patch on Saturday evening and this usually gives up time to exclude patches if necessary.

In regards to Q6, I’ve found the failures to be with uninstalling whatever AV software was on the PC prior to onboarding. Like Kyle we’ve taken to removing it first and then onboarding the PC.

Q2: don’t even get me started on billing. When the auto pay system works, it works well, but with this last bank change from SW auto payment failed and instead of being understanding SW billing was pretty indignant about non payment.

Q3: I now have a new sales rep. She started out seemingly fantastic. Was going to go to bat for me over how we’re being billed for backup. I sent her a bunch of requested information to support our side of the argument, then it was back to radio silence. Had to contact her a week later only to be told I was SOL. Its been radio silence again since.

All that said, SW/LogicNow/GFI has been a great tool. We love the standalone backup and RMM generally works great.

This is why I roll my own, VNC Open VPN or No Machine also have used Webmin for Linux server admin tasks. I am going to a Connectwise dog and pony show free lunch thing. Willing to hear their case but I am not an MSP and limit my practice to storage backup and DR. Hate dealing with the Win FUBAR that I pass along to others equipped to deal with it.