We currently utilize Request Tracker for help desk ticketing, we utilize Spiceworks for asset inventorying. I am pondering whether it might be worthwhile to move from RT to Spiceworks for help desk as well. Has anyone used both systems and can provide some insight into any benefits/problems with either system? Or has general philosophical reasons why one should use one solution over the other? Of course, RT is open source and Spiceworks is not - and usually this would be a major item for me - but since Spiceworks is free and takes community involvement fairly actively its not as major of a concern for me (personally).
Spiceworks works really well until it doesn't. As long as you're aware of its performance limitations, you'll be fine with it.
My organization is currently trying to roll out Spiceworks in a 1000+ user environment. We've been met with significant performance limitations because it can't utilize more than two cores, relies on a slow SQLite backend, and consumes high amounts of disk I/O. Their support is a bumbling nightmare when it comes to troubleshooting these, and so far their only solution has been for us to move our installation from a virtual server on our production VMware cluster with a robust FC SAN backend to a physical machine with slipshod consumer-level SSDs. Predictably, performance is worse in their recommended configuration than the one we were already using.
Feature-wise, though, it's a great product and totally worth using. It's very easy to customize and has a very robust third-party developer ecosystem. In its current state, though, it's just not fit for large environments at all.
I have been using Spiceworks for years in our production environment. We fully rely on it for our help desk operation for ticket tracking, asset management and monitoring. I has been one of the best products we have ever used in our department and it continues to grow and provide new features for us.
I would say to you what I say to everyone who has to pick between products.
What works for you? I use RT, and it does what I need it to do. I personally prefer having small tools that do the job well, as opposed to one big tool, that does the job okay, and maybe with some brute force, do the job well! Reason, one part of that system dies, it all dies.
Use RT for what it was designed for, and use SPICEWORKS for what it is designed for :)