8 Dynatrace Alternatives to Consider in 2021
Everywhere you look, you see something to do with software and applications. But for all this software to work well, the people behind them have to know how they work.
For a software developer, this comes as no surprise. They need to know how their code is working when deployed. Before the software deploys, they want to iron out errors, so they don’t become problematic and frustrate customers. While software developers can spend time manually going over the code they have written, a better option would be to employ the help of an Application Performance Management (APM) tool.
The insights an APM provides into the software’s performance highlight what the end-users experience is and how they respond. Thus, businesses should have such a tool in their arsenal.
This article discusses Dynatrace and the alternative APM tools so that you can have an overview of the solutions available to help you decide which is best for your needs. Let’s first get familiar with Dynatrace.
What is Dynatrace?
Dynatrace is an APM tool provider. The platform is an all-in-one software intelligence tool so that an organization can improve performance.
They support software companies to maneuver through complex cloud solutions. It visualizes the data so that Dynatrace users can work out where the issues are, where potential issues can arise, and what to fix.
What is Dynatrace used for?
Dynatrace’s Software Intelligence Platform employs artificial intelligence to help developers monitor their applications’ performances. Three concepts support the way it works:
- OneAgent - this is a single agent that automatically discovers instruments and collects high-fidelity monitoring data from all the available components in your developing environment.
- Smartscape - this creates a highly interactive environment topology map that is used to visualize the relationships and dependencies among all the components of the code for the application.
- Davis AI engine - Davis is Dynatrace’s own exclusive AI engine. With the help of its AI engine, Dynatrace helps businesses analyze everything. This means that it looks at all the relationships and dependencies in the IT environment. This analysis shows the user where the problem is, the impact of the problem, and the root cause. This supports the development team to fix issues immediately, and through automation, it supports integration with available CI/CD tools.
Why Switch from Dynatrace?
Despite all the great things, there are still areas for improvement for Dynatrace. You should be aware enough of why it could be disadvantageous to use this tool. Before we delve into alternatives, here are some of the reasons why you would either choose to switch from Dynatrace or not choose it to begin with:
- Pricing: Dynatrace has been criticized for being pricey. Since every feature has a separate cost attached to it, it adds up quickly and becomes very difficult to track what is being used. Billing processes are also criticized heavily.
- Constant updates and new releases: While this may not be an absolute disadvantage, it is something that a software business needs to consider because if the APM keeps updating regularly, its changes in features can affect the company’s own software’s performance as well. It also increases update fatigue for the client.
- Difficulty Level: According to reviews, users criticize Dynatrace for having a dashboard that can be confusing and requires a very steep learning curve. The difficulty level is high, making it only usable by experts. If this is the case, beginners will have trouble with it, making it not so user-friendly.
- Slow Initialization: It has slow initialization, causing it to take time to display transactions.
- Uneven Flexibility: It has good flexibility on its app, but the web application has shown to be less flexible in comparison.
Dynatrace Competitors: Comparing Features
While Dynatrace provides a lot of features that support development teams, there are options that businesses should explore before committing to a tool that they would be committing to. Here are eight popular alternatives to Dynatrace that you can consider.
A developer’s best friend, Scout APM is all about providing a user-friendly platform for developers. It helps developers troubleshoot issues and fix issues proactively. It also identifies issues automatically and shows real-time regressions. It prioritizes problems so developers get all the relevant information they need and none of the data they don’t. Scout APM usually is used by small to medium-sized DevOps teams.
Scout APM features are as follows:
- With continuous monitoring, it is always providing intuitive dashboards. Data about endpoints, paths, users, and requests are displayed so that you can identify what is slowing the process down.
- Tracking and logs of events are available so that you can be aware of what is going on. With clear communication, you can find out which developer needs to be communicated with.
- Deep tracing logic capability lets you identify the response time distribution for all the requests.
- Troubleshooting is available automatically so that you can identify areas with issues in the source codes and find bottlenecks.
Cisco’s APM, AppDynamics, is a proactive performance monitoring platform that ensures success for its users, primarily businesses. They focus on observability of the software and application. AppDynamics uses AI-powered insights and focuses on visibility to support application improvement and business performance for their applications.
Features of AppDynamics are as follows:
- Agents and controllers can be found all over the entire application’s ecosystem and infrastructure. With them, it collects data in real-time and informs developers of the application’s performance.
- It auto-discovers traffic requests and helps visualize performance
- Business transactions, which are user-initiated requests like login, searching, etc. are tracked, so developers know what is going on
- With the help of AI find out root-cause diagnostics, AppDynamics detects issues and reduces MTTR
Sumo Logic is an APM platform that promises faster troubleshooting with integrated logs, metrics, and traces. It focuses on cloud operations and providing analytics to support developers. It has multi-cloud support with over 150 apps that you can integrate with your work. It promises security, scalability, reliability, and performance by ensuring that data is unlimited for your company.
Features of Sumo Logic include:
- Built to scale with an enterprise-grade and secure multi-tenant architecture
- Cloud support for all data
- Provision of machine-learning powered analytics that is insightful, powerful, and intuitive
- Supporting modern enterprise by breaking down data silos
DataDog is an APM service that helps monitor cloud-scale applications. The platform is used by developers of various IT and DevOps teams. With the help of DataDog, users can view servers, clouds, metrics, apps, and teams as well as view, manage and keep track of all databases.
DataDog has the following features:
- Deployment is available in any environment like on-location, hybrid, cloud, or IoT.
- Developers can easily categorize and use tag-based search along with analytics to scour through mounds of information.
- Tracking information from the previous 15 months of metric retention can be done on the platform.
- Live Process monitoring provides live tracking of the impact of processes.
To build better software, New Relic supports many developers and companies. It is flexible and dynamic so that everything is in one place. It ensures that its users can respond faster, optimize better and build better software. The whole point is to support developers by providing all kinds of information that they will need.
There are three major features for New Relic:
- Telemetry Data Platform for viewing operational data
- Full Stack Observability to support analysis, visualization, and optimization
- Applied Intelligence to help detect, diagnose and resolve issues proactively
Development teams can rely on SolarWinds to provide many tools to support them. AppOptics is one of the services and tools, which is an APM tool. It is SaaS-based and focused on hybrid and cloud-native IT environments.
Features of SolarWinds AppOptics are as follows:
- With the help of AppOptics’ auto instrumented application service, a topology map supports developers to visualize where an issue is and shows how it can affect your code. It also helps pinpoint root causes.
- Supports full-stack visibility
- With modern infrastructure monitoring and integrations, you can monitor AWS, Azure, and Digital Experience monitoring.
- AppOptics provides over 150 plugins and integrations for your team.
Splunk provides a platform which it self describes as Data-to-Everything. With the one platform to rule them all, this service offers a scalable and reliable data platform to understand your data and help you act on the data. Its modern data platform helps IT, Security, and DevOps professionals ingest data from any source available so that you can monitor, investigate and analyze it.
- Scalable and reliable platform
- Visualize data and configure data to support your decision making
- Real-Time Visibility
LogicMonitor is a massive proponent of hybrid IT. It is extensible and secure infrastructure monitoring on a single platform. With over 2,000 integrations available, it is a powerful package with many features that support configuration monitoring and AIOps early warning systems.
Features available for LogicMonitor:
- Encrypted Data
- SaaS Deployment
- Intelligent Alerting
- Topology Mapping
- Anomaly Detection
- AIOps Early Warning System
What to Look for in an APM Solution
An APM solution is an excellent support infrastructure for developers and software companies. The biggest reason for that is that it helps them focus more on creating code and informing them of any issues. This will help them make sure that they can produce software or an application that is not only focused on user experience but will also be free of foreseeable issues. The more relevant and clear information and data collection the APM tool does the better prepared the team will be.
All stages of the development life cycle use APMs, to help rid as many errors as possible before the product is released, ensuring high project quality. Once released, if any other issues arise, development teams can quickly work on the issue through its alerts before the customers notice. One key way of maintaining customers is to make sure that they enjoy using the app and get what they expected.
In this article, you’ve seen the different types of APM tools available in the market. Each of them provides similar services, but each with its own unique spin and features. If you want to know how to choose an APM tool, here is a list of things you should keep an eye out for.
- Supported Languages: Know what languages the APM supports. Although many APMs support popular languages, it is still essential to see if the APM you are signing up for will benefit you or not.
- Cloud or Server Support: Know whether the solution offers cloud or on-location server support.
- Reporting and Data Collection: What kind of reporting does the APM provide? By default, many APM tools provide generic reports for almost everything, so you want to look for a tool that allows you to organize and filter extraneous data. You also want to know how much detail the reports provide.
- Automation: How automated is the APM tool? Automation should help you reduce your development to deployment time significantly. It should also immediately alert you when it finds an issue in your code or when there is a need for maintenance.
- Security and Support: Since this is all about creating a product for your development team, you want to ensure that it is secure so that no ill-intended third party can affect your work. You also want to know how supportive the APM tool developers are in case there are issues. Many of the tools will offer better security and better support for higher payment tiers (except for Scout APM, which offers the same top-tier level of support for all its users), so this is something you want to consider as well.
At the end of the day, when selecting your APM tool, you want to be assured it will help you. After all, you are making an investment and banking on it to support you. You want the tool to help make developing an application or software as easy as possible. A good idea is to try the free trial version and contact the APM tool providers to understand their features and services better. Some of the providers also provide training to make things easy for your organization. So before you make your decision and commit, make sure you have your grounds covered.
APM tools are a developing team’s best friend. To help you decide which APM you should use, we spoke about Dynatrace alternatives, like Scout APM, to provide you with a more exhaustive knowledge of the kind of tools available in the market.