NetIQ Identity Manager
Strengths: Solid identity management across physical, cloud and virtual environments.
Weaknesses: Documentation could be streamlined.
Verdict: With documentation that needs a bit of help, you may find yourself needing the excellent support that is traditional with NetIQ.
Identity Manager from NetIQ is a full identity and user management platform that allows administrators to manage users across physical, virtual and cloud-based environments. With this product deployed, administrators can manage the entire user lifecycle. This tool offers full automated account provisioning through the use of many application connectors, including support for many cloud-based applications, such as Salesforce.com and Google Apps.
We found this solution to be of average difficulty to install and configure. Its server side can be installed on either a Microsoft Windows or Linux server. Installation on both platforms is fairly straightforward and takes just a few minutes after launching the installer package. After a short setup wizard, the product is installed and ready to use. The first thing we noticed about Identity Manager is configurability of the management application. This product comes loaded with policy planners, designers and analyzers, which allows for flexible deployment of the tool, as well as policy, overall.
Its major strength is the ability to manage users across all of the various platforms throughout the enterprise. When a user is provisioned or de-provisioned, the changes are instantly distributed across physical systems, virtual environments including VMware ESX and Microsoft Hyper-V, and many cloud-based environments. This ensures solid security throughout the entire enterprise and limits the possibility of orphaned accounts or mis-provisioning of resources. This also eliminates the burden of having to add users to multiple systems manually, which can help avoid possible administrator error. Furthermore, Identity Manager can integrate directly with many third-party security information and event managers to maintain security throughout the environment and ensure that possible threats are as visible as possible.
Documentation included several PDF installation and administrator guides. We found the documentation to be very segmented with manuals covering specific parts and pieces of the product. Overall, the documentation was well-organized, but we found it to be a little overwhelming - having to look through the list of documents to find the guide we were looking for. We always prefer to have a single PDF administrator guide that covers the whole product because only having to search one document it is so much easier to find information quickly. However, we did find all documentation to contain many clear step-by-step instructions, screen shots and configuration examples.
NetIQ offers support in basic and premium levels. Customers with basic receive 7/7 phone- and email-based technical aid, as well as access to an online area which includes a knowledge base, user forums and many other resources. Premium support customers also receive 24/7 phone and email-based support.
At a price starting at about $25 per user, this product can become very expensive depending on the environment. However, we find it to be a very good value for the money. Despite the price tag, Identity Manager provides a lot of solid functionality that is well integrated with the existing environment and is easy to deploy and manage. The wide variety of policy tools offers an added value along with ensuring that workflows are properly designed and meet the security needs of the specific environment.