FineGround Moves to Real Time

AppScope monitors response-time woes.

Applications performance tuning provider FineGround Networks Inc. this week will move into real-time performance monitoring with a new member of its product suite.

FineGround, which already provides a patent-pending server optimization and Secure Sockets Layer acceleration, is adding the new AppScope monitor to isolate response-time problems on specific applications or networks, validate end-user performance experience, and track success against service-level agreements. The tool emphasizes low cost and low complexity in an agentless architecture that measures response times for actual end-user transactions (see screen).

"We instrument the pages as they fly by. AppScope [statistically] samples the traffic coming off the load balancer. When a request comes for a page, the load balancer could shuffle it off to AppScope, which sends the request to the back end, instruments the page that comes back and sends it off," said Nat Kausik, CEO of the privately held company, in Campbell, Calif.

AppScope provides a series of reports on response times, including the amount of time taken to deliver a container page and the time taken to deliver embedded objects. The reports show where the different sources of performance degradation are. Other reports break down response times by URL, time interval, IP address, server time and total time.

AppScope, which supports HTTP and HTTP Secure, requires no changes to applications, servers or browsers. The product complements FineGrounds existing Condenser, which optimizes network and server performance.

"Our initial plans are to use them together on our in-house-developed corporate portal so that we can measure and compare the performance of condensed and noncondensed content," said Eric Peterson, principal systems analyst at Eastman Chemical Co., in Kingsport, Tenn.

"Without AppScope, it would be hard to judge ... whether the Condenser is doing what we hope it will," said Peterson, who is beta testing AppScope.

AppScope, which runs on Linux, Solaris and AIX, is available now for $20,000 per installation.