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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Website Performance Monitoring: Quick Problem Detection and Triage

Triage is the process of performing just enough diagnosis to select the appropriate support team and convince them that the problem is truly theirs to solve. An effective triage system eliminates finger-pointing among the support groups and the resulting loss of valuable time. That time savings, repeated for each failure, can easily amount to many hours per month -- time that can be worth tens of thousands of dollars or more, in lost sales, performance penalties, and customer dissatisfaction. Triage works well if it can be performed quickly and reliably, so that its results are available almost immediately and so that the support teams trust those results. If it takes too long, or involves complex, difficult-to-use tools, or delivers questionable results, it will not be usable in a production environment. Support teams won't use it, or they won't trust the results, and the classic finger-pointing exercises will reappear.

Attempting a diagnosis with general-purpose tools, although possible in some cases, almost always increases the total time spent repairing the problem. It's far better to get the right team involved quickly with the right set of website monitoring services, instead of wasting large amounts of time trying to do a complete diagnosis without the best tools.


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