What are the disadvantages of Outsystems?

I am new here, personaly i find outsystem as great idea of low code, but nowere available the list of disadvantages of outsystem, For example Microsoft has such Info about PowerApps, In my opinion it is good to know the limits of system. It is honest across from customers and developers. I have analysed the infos from the dev forums and created such list, may be some infos  to old, but the most one is actual: here is my list, please feel free to correct it: it is only my suggest:

  • he product is very pricy. This means that most small businesses will have difficulties to get their business based on Outsystems.
     It is quite clearly geared towards bigger enterprise customers, and probably not a viable choice for small businesses to base their business on.
  • The licensing model and the cost of application objects, hard to justify future projects (The User limits and high User licensing cost.)
  • To low developers with skills of OutSystems
  • it become challenge to migrate data or application from one platform to Outsystems.
  • Hard to upgrade to newer product releases
  • Performance & scaling can only be achieved only
     if you are expert in Outsystems otherwise it's difficult to achieve the bench mark for large application.
  • Shows some signs of instability in the publishing process with very large and complex projects 
  • On the PaaS version you are heavily restricted on access to the infrastructure and cannot get access to simple functions such as SQL replication or database maintenance options.
  • Need cooperation feature with printing format like Excel diagram and PDF.
  • Need cooperation feature with accounting system.
  • Offline developing is not possible
  • Community, Support, Learning - only in English not in other Languages
  • SQL is managed by the system, so tuning and in depth control is harder
  • It's hard to design UX/design stuff yourself, it can be time consuming
  • Unit testing can be improved.
  • Automated testing is not yet mature.
  • The difficulty with OutSystems is handling NULL values in external databases and in JSON.
  • The organization needs to keep the mind opened and believe we can move fast
  • The could offer a free tier for you to install on your infrastructure. It is only available now in their cloud.
  • The external connectors are limited and have few support. 
  • Rebuilding depencencies when building with multiple applications.
  • Problems with third party implementations
  • Limited third party apps

Hello Alexander.

If you allow me, let me comment on those points. :)

  • he product is very pricy. This means that most small businesses will have difficulties to get their business based on Outsystems.
     It is quite clearly geared towards bigger enterprise customers, and probably not a viable choice for small businesses to base their business on.


    This is not a disadvantage of the OutSystems Platform. The business model is focused on Medium/Big companies.

  • The licensing model and the cost of application objects, hard to justify future projects (The User limits and high User licensing cost.)

    This is related to the price. I don't see this as a disadvantage.

  • To low developers with skills of OutSystems

    This may be a disadvantage now, but it wont be like this for ever (or for much longer, probably).
    In any case, the learning curve with OutSystems is much shorter than with most (if not all) the traditional technologies.

  • it become challenge to migrate data or application from one platform to Outsystems.

    This is not true. At least, not entirely. First, you don't need to migrate data. It is possible to use your applications with external databases. But if you want to migrate data to your OutSystems database, there are multiple enterprise solutions for that.
    Migration of data is not something related to the platform itself. And the platform does not impose any restriction on that.

  • Hard to upgrade to newer product releases

    In the past, maybe, but for quite sometime this is not the case anymore. Of course, when there are breaking changes or too much customization of database (like using stored procedures, views and so on), some extra-effort may be required, but I wouldn't say that is "hard" (in general).

  • Performance & scaling can only be achieved only
     if you are expert in Outsystems otherwise it's difficult to achieve the bench mark for large application.


    OutSystems has a lot of best practices documented that help you develop your applications in a way that becomes easier to achieve performance and scalability.
    By the way, there is no technology of the same type (I am talking about flexibility) that does not require advanced knowledge depending on the context. We are not talking about creating blogs with Wordpress here, right?

  • Shows some signs of instability in the publishing process with very large and complex projects

    Can you be more specific? Every technology that I am aware of becomes more "problematic" with big projects. OutSystems is being used by a lot of companies (not only IT consultancy), with really big projects and complexity.
    What do you think it is "out of the normal" here? What do you mean by "Instabilities"?
     
  • On the PaaS version you are heavily restricted on access to the infrastructure and cannot get access to simple functions such as SQL replication or database maintenance options.

    You always have the possibility to install the platform on premises, even on a cloud (other than the OutSystems cloud). If the infra-structure is being taken care by the OutSystems, it is not reasonable to expect that they allow unrestricted access. Who will take responsibility if someone breaks the "toy"?

  • Need cooperation feature with printing format like Excel diagram and PDF.

    Not sure I understood. But if you're talking about Being able to create files with different formats, this is something to be achieved with libraries, not by the technology itself.

  • Need cooperation feature with accounting system.

    Again, not sure I understood. What do you mean by "accounting" system? I am assuming you are not talking about authentication, as it is part of the platform.

  • Offline developing is not possible

    This is not true (never was, really)

  • Community, Support, Learning - only in English not in other Languages

    This is true except for Japanese. It is a disadvantage, indeed. Even so, many Training partners can provide training in more than one language.

  • SQL is managed by the system, so tuning and in depth control is harder

    Not if you have a on premises installation. Than you have directly access to the database.
    If you are using the OutSystems Cloud, than this is half true, as changes to the database must go through the support, in general.

  • It's hard to design UX/design stuff yourself, it can be time consuming

    What is different of any other technology?
    In any case, this is not true. In OutSYstems you have OutSystems UI, with a lot of widgets and other stuff, to avoid having to create visual elements from scrach. You have Scaffolding of screens and screen templates. You have the Theme. You can create your own themes...
    Its way easier to design your application UI/UX.
    Besides, the platform have tools to help designers.

  • Unit testing can be improved.

    This is totally true.

  • Automated testing is not yet mature.

    Indeed, it has a lot of space for improvement here.

  • The difficulty with OutSystems is handling NULL values in external databases and in JSON.

    True for NULL, even if I have a strong opinion about it, that only in a very few situations you have to use more time consuming workarounds.
    Not sure I understood what is  the difficulty about the JSON. The platform has built in capabilities to deal with it...

  • The organization needs to keep the mind opened and believe we can move fast

    Is that a disadvantage of the platform?

  • The could offer a free tier for you to install on your infrastructure. It is only available now in their cloud.

    There is simply no reason to have a "personal environment" installation on premises. Regarding customers/potential costumers, if I am not wrong, there is some type of trial out.

  • The external connectors are limited and have few support.

    Not sure about which type of connectors are you referring to.

  • Rebuilding depencencies when building with multiple applications.

    This is a problem only if you are not following the best practices in terms of architecture.
    And if you are not, this would be a problem in any technology...

  • Problems with third party implementations

    This is a problem in any technology.

  • Limited third party apps

    Not sure I understood this... What do you mean by "third party apps"?

    In any case, It is a good discussion.
    Hope I was able to add to it! :)

    Cheers!

Eduardo Jauch wrote:

Thanks a lot Eduardo. 

I create the list from some disscussions in the forum, it was only general list, which i want to clarify, 

I answer you for some question, that you can better understand, that is the meaning, as far as i am possible, because i am new and has not such knowlage in outsystems than you. 

  • it become challenge to migrate data or application from one platform to Outsystems
    Example: An Angular/React Application with no JS to Outsystems, sorry i don't have knowlage how to do that, or migrate to Web React Application
  • The organization needs to keep the mind opened and believe we can move fast
    Low Code meens or suggest always easy or fast, but some times it is normaly the opposit, it depends on the knowlage of the developer or possibility of systems
  • Need cooperation feature with accounting system.
    For example SIAM, User Authentification with OAuth2.0
  • The external connectors are limited and have few support.
    for Examle to the OutLook (in general O365)
  • Limited third party apps
    that means not own created in outsystems apps, what could be bougth and intalled in own outsystems environment

Hello Alexander,

it become challenge to migrate data or application from one platform to Outsystems
Example: An Angular/React Application with no JS to Outsystems, sorry i don't have knowlage how to do that, or migrate to Web React Application

Well, there is almost "zero" importers between languages. It's an extremely hard task to translate automatically a language to another. So, I would say that you will not find this type of "conversion tool" to any language, not only OutSystems platform. And if you find something, it will be a very poor implementation, probably not maintained, etc.

The organization needs to keep the mind opened and believe we can move fast
Low Code meens or suggest always easy or fast, but some times it is normaly the opposit, it depends on the knowlage of the developer or possibility of systems

Well, first, this is true for any technology/programming language. C#, Java, C++, Python. If you don't know what you're doing, you will mess up. That's why it's recommended to have seniors, on any medium/big project. IT's this way in OutSystems, it's this way in any technology.

And if the platform is used by people that knows how to use it, the development time will be shorter than on other technologies. It's not a suggestion. It's reality. But yes, this works only if the developer knows what it is doing. If not. It will take longer. Again, this is true for any technology and methodology.

Need cooperation feature with accounting system.
For example SIAM, User Authentification with OAuth2.0

Most technologies also need "libraries" to do this type of integration. Some don't even ship those libraries together, you have to install them from third party vendors or create your own.

In OutSystems, the USERS API was recently updated to include, built in, the most used external authentication systems, but it has good documentation on how to implement this type of authentication. It's really easy to do so, in general, and so, I don't see this as a disadvantage of the platform.

The external connectors are limited and have few support.
for Examle to the OutLook (in general O365)

This is kind of true. The connectors exist, but they are provided through FORGE, and most of them are delivered as it is. Not that other technologies ship them built in. So, I would say that the problem here is that the ecosystem around OutSystems is not yet "big enough" to have different companies creating solutions. This means that usually, even if you start from an existing connector, you will have to assume it is your own code and provide maintenance for it. We are luck the platform allows for fast development, so this is not really a big problem...

 Limited third party apps
that means not own created in outsystems apps, what could be bougth and intalled in own outsystems environment

Still not sure if I understand. FORGE has a ton of apps and plugins and components (+2000) that you can install in your environment. But it's true that most are provided as they are, without real support. But hey, they are free... As I said before, free also has a cost. 

Cheers!


Eduardo Jauch wrote:

thanks, Eduardo 


Hello @Alexander,

Thank you for approaching low-code by OutSystems with a critical mindset.

After going through the disadvantages it is equally important to balance your view with the much bigger list of advantages that make many customers, successful with our product, not just with small applications, but also with enterprise-grade scalable solutions. We don't see many vendors who can do this already so very well as OutSystems, but we are constantly improving nonetheless.

I would like to invite you to talk to the [customer name] IT team, with whom we in OutSystems Customer Success are working closely together to exponentially grow the successes with OutSystems.

Looking forward to working together with you and the team!

Robbert

// customer name was removed

Robbert van den Beld wrote:

Hello @Alexander,

Thank you for approaching low-code by OutSystems with a critical mindset.

After going through the disadvantages it is equally important to balance your view with the much bigger list of advantages that make many customers, successful with our product, not just with small applications, but also with enterprise-grade scalable solutions. We don't see many vendors who can do this already so very well as OutSystems, but we are constantly improving nonetheless.

I would like to invite you to talk to the [customer name], with whom we in OutSystems Customer Success are working closely together to exponentially grow the successes with OutSystems.

Looking forward to working together with you and the team!

Robbert

// customer name removed

Thank you Robert,
really, I only begin to know the system in my own private initiative, it have nothing to do with the team, company and other organisations. I think positive and know many advantages of outsystem, as the developer from other system i have some knowledge and look of system limitation at first, see my first comment "  In my opinion it is good to know the limits of system ". I have no possibility to turn back disadvantage header to system limits. My goal is to learn and I am sure, we are working closely together to exponentially grow the successes with OutSystems!