End-users rely on technology providers to offer a simple solution to help solve complex problems; something that helps both business groups and their customers. Specifically, Web services expedite the application to application delivery for building integrated systems of web application components. Without the proper knowledge on monitoring performance, the application could run into a number of issues. Therefore, it’s important to understand the specifics around measuring the performance of Web services.
Measuring the Performance of Web Services
When you use various web applications, you’ll want to make sure the Web services connected to the application are thoroughly measured. Some reasons for measuring Web services are: to determine if services have enough storage capacity, are secure and free from vulnerabilities, operate well within SLAs, etc. Web components provide seamless data exchange and transfer. A prime example of this would be when you access your bank account online, check the account balance, make a transaction, or credit card payment.
By keeping track of Web services, you will be able to better monitor application performance. In turn, issues can be identified and fixed ahead of time, ensuring that applications remain free of errors and glitches.
Organizations use Web services to improve business standards and processes. However, there’s still a possibility that you may run into issues. Some of these issues include:
- Web service availability: No matter how well your website or Web application runs, it’s still prone to availability and performance issues. When your website is down, Web services will automatically experience availability issues.
- HTTP performance: Web pages and websites are built using the HTTP communication protocol, a protocol which shares its working with Web services. The challenge with the HTTP protocol is that it establishes a connection with a server only for a specific time until the data is transferred. With this, a lot of time is spent creating and terminating connections to the server. In addition, Web services mostly utilize XML messages and conversion of data to and from XML can be time consuming during the communication phase.
- Reliability: Web services mostly utilize the HTTP protocol which doesn’t assure data delivery and response. These reliability issues are only part of the HTTP protocol. You can choose to use other protocols to try and avoid reliability issues.
- Authorization: Web services tend to ignore authentication standards and can directly have data transferred to an unauthorized source.
There’s several other challenges organizations face, such as scalability, testing of Web services, Web service communication, etc. that can cause performance degradation to your websites or applications.
Monitoring Web Services
Despite all these challenges, utilizing Web services has its own benefits, both from a business and technology standpoint. Before attributing those benefits, it’s crucial to first figure out how to avoid issues that will degrade performance. Before services affect the overall performance of the application and the end-user experience, it’s important to monitor them from the beginning. Not just the Web services, but the application, and any processes that may slow the service. Additionally, the server will have to be closely monitored. Monitoring Web services continuously will allow you to gain coverage into application health so you can start helping end-users and customers manage their SaaS and other internal applications. Here are some of the benefits of monitoring Web services:
- Monitor internal and SaaS based apps running across all servers in the environment
- Determine key Web service availability, latency, and validate the content returned of that query
- Saves organizations time and money as Web services utilize protocols that are used widely by all organizations and therefore requires very little investment
- Web services are easy to access when you want to track or modify data
- Built-in alerting and reporting capabilities allow you to pinpoint the root cause of problems in minutes
Even if precautionary measures are taken, sometimes issues with applications just can’t be avoided. However, with the proper knowledge of measuring and monitoring Web services, application downtown can be identified and remediated in a timely fashion. Another great solution is to implement an application performance monitoring tool. A tool like this will make measuring performance of Web services substantially easier. Moreover, it will provide you with the insight you need to optimize overall performance.