Bristol Looks to Streamline IBM MQSeries Apps

SAN MATEO (04/25/2000) - Bristol Technology Inc. intends to make application integration less complex with the release today of eSleuth, designed to analyze bottlenecks and system failures in IBM Corp. MQSeries transactional middleware systems.

According to Ken Blackwell, chief technology officer of Bristol, most analysis programs simply point out when a problem occurred and alert the company to it, whereas eSleuth helps define why and where the problem occurred.

"eSleuth is about helping organizations analyze and diagnose performance or logic problems in distributed transaction systems," Blackwell said.

Program director Thomas Murphy of Stamford, Connecticut-based analyst firm Meta Group Inc., commented that the ability to analyze transactions are fundamental to the health of any e-business.

"Any glitch in these applications represents millions of dollars in a very short time that can be lost in overall revenue. You really can't afford to fail. You really have to be prepared and constantly understand the health of your system, and to really understand how hard you can push your system," Murphy said.

Murphy pointed out that one instance of downtime or transaction failure costs not only lost revenue from the downtime period, but also may cost the actual customer.

"If you're buy.com and somebody comes to your shopping sites and wants to make a purchase, and your site doesn't work, that's just going to make them look somewhere else. There's very little chance that person will come back to your site again," Murphy said.

Bristol's ability to pinpoint why and where the problem occurred gives programmers powerful tools in problem resolution, according to Murphy.

"Is the bottleneck at the app server, the HTTP server, in the database, or is it in the messaging cueing pipe itself, or is it within some piece of business logic? Knowing where the problem is is 90 percent of the solution," Murphy said.

Competitor Rational Software Corp. offers more breadth and a more integrated suite of products than Bristol, Murphy said, but in Web site and system-testing capabilities alone, Bristol has more depth. Another competitor, Mercury, has a best-of-breed testing piece of development that complements Bristol's technology, Murphy said.

"With Bristol, you really have a complementary technology that's really designed around this whole idea of transactions as opposed to, say, functional or specific load testing," Murphy said.

ESleuth features include centralized data analysis, which enables enterprise applications on multiple systems in multiple locations to be analyzed from a single console; dynamic transaction visualization; data filtering; API-level monitoring, which tells why and where a problem occurred; and graphical views to visualize the e-business system data flow, according to Bristol.

Bristol Technology Inc., in Danbury, Connecticut, is at http://www.bristol.com/.

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