Web services QoS features can be categorized into service level features and service user (consumer) based features. Basic monitoring and instrumentation, Service Level Objectives (SLOs) and assurances are examples of QoS attributes that can be measured regardless of who is invoking the service. When you measure service performance in the context of a specific user you add the capability to monitor and enforce Service Level Agreements (SLAs). Typically, SLA's are defined based on metrics such as response time. To monitor service performance and to maintain service availability, you need end-to-end capabilities. Service providers need to ensure that their IT infrastructure and software platforms (application server, SOAP platform, etc.,) are capable of handling the volume. In essence, a service provider relies on the Web services platforms and management software to deliver a highly available Web service.
Hence, you should expect Web services QoS features to come from two sources: your Web services platform vendor and your management software vendor. As far as the leading Web services platforms, it depends on your operating system and application server choice. On windows systems, .Net is the defacto choice. Your other choice is J2EE that supports multiple operating systems including Windows (Unix/Linux, Windows, etc.,). BEA and WebSphere are the leading J2EE platform vendors.
To ensure end-to-end monitoring and management capabilities, your web services management platform needs to be tied into IT infrastructure management. This is essential in root cause analysis and problem diagnostics. Leading management vendors with these capabilities include HP OpenView, IBM Tivoli, etc., In addition, there are some niche vendors with specialized Web services management products such as Talking Blocks, Blue Titan, etc., These products, however, tend to have loose integrations into network systems management products.
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