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Response Networks Debuts Pulsar xSP

Service Level Management ISV Response Networks Inc.Monday (April 30) unveiled Pulsar xSP, a policy-based service level compliance platform aimed at ASPs, MSPs, AIPs and other service providers managing SLAs across an application hosting supply chain.

Pulsar xSP is designed to monitor hosted applications from the end-user perspective. It enables service providers to create policy-based SLAs and monitor compliance in real time across outsourced supply chains of multiple networks.

"The challenge is to find a way to manage and control an infrastructure you don't control," Ivan Shefrin, founder and senior VP of business development, told InternetNews. "There's a complex web of outsourced services and infrastructure that go into building a hosted application. The SLA is only as good as the weakest link in the chain."

Service providers implementing a branded Pulsar xSP solution can host it as an SLA compliance service offering for their customers, partners and suppliers, sharing actionable SLA information among them and allowing each user to monitor SLA status and events in real time.

To deal with the difficulties of representing one link in a complex supply chain, application delivery service providers often create limited SLAs based on infrastructure availability metrics, resulting in imperfect end-user performance guarantees, poor customer satisfaction and finger-pointing, according to Rick Sturm, principal analyst at Enterprise Management Associates.

"Pulsar xSP opens the door to enabling meaningful performance SLAs driven by customer business transactions across the entire supply chain, facilitating organizational efficiency, improved customer satisfaction and higher margin services," Sturm said.

Pulsar xSP is a Web-based application with functionality that includes a policy engine for creating business-driven SLA compliance rules, baseline and trend analysis, real time monitoring and alerts, diagnostic triage, report creation and publishing, and an integrated secure portal allowing different customer, provider and partner user groups to sign in and view customized information about pertinent service levels.

"Most SLAs are negotiated and then forgotten because to date there has been no practical way to identify and deal with outsourcing violations from the customer's viewpoint," said Ted Joseph, Response Networks CEO. "That was the impetus for the creation of Pulsar xSP."

Any user along the application supply chain can then access their relevant customer-supplier SLAs via a Web browser. The system also supports multiple administrators and permissions, for example allowing AIPs to establish and monitor SLAs for their ASP customers, and permitting ASPs in turn to establish, monitor and publish SLAs for their enterprise clients.

Pulsar xSP was built specifically to serve stringent service provider requirements. It uses a standards-based distributed application architecture built upon Sun Microsystems' Jini connection technology, Java and XML to achieve flexibility, reliability, scalability and security. Pulsar xSP is self-healing and capable of simultaneously monitoring millions of transactions. With its distributed Jini services, providers can install and host multiple Pulsar xSP components on machines in multiple data centers to scale the application, and have them all function cooperatively as a single, unified system.

"Companies spend millions of dollars each year on their IT infrastructure. In the end, it's only there for one reason – to deliver their application," Shefrin said.

Based in Alexandria, Va., and North Andover, Mass., Response delivers provider-class end-user service level management solutions that effectively measure and manage the performance and reliability of e-business transactions in order to verify quality of service and increase customer satisfaction. Response Networks' management solutions include ResponseCenter, a performance monitoring tool for enterprise applications, and Pulsar EQM, a service enablement platform for management service providers offering web site monitoring.