Using the Service Level Policy

Learn how to define conditions for measuring and reporting performance of a specific contract.

About Policies Managing Policies QoS Policies Use Cases for Policy Manager

Supported Platforms: 7.x, 8.0

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Service Level Policy Options
  3. Configuration
  4. Use Cases for Policy Manager
  5. Use Cases for the Akana API Platform (Community Manager)

Introduction

The Service Level Policy defines conditions for measuring and reporting performance of a specific contract. Each policy is composed of a Rule and an Access Interval. Rules represent the conditions you define to measure and report performance of a service contract. When a defined system condition matches a defined rule, an alert is raised. A Rule is composed of Rule Elements (Alert Code, Metric, Operator, Value, Units, and Interval) that you can configure to meet your service monitoring requirements.

Service Level Policy Options

An Access Interval is composed of one or more Access Days (Sunday through Saturday). Each Access Day is configured with an Access Time that can represent one complete day (All Day) or a date range (Range) that is specified using a 24-hour clock format (HH:MM). For more information, see About QoS Policies.

When you add a Service Level Policy Rule, you define the service measurement and reporting configuration that will be referenced by services and contracts. The attributes you will define are listed below.

Service Level Policy Name and Description

The name and description you assign to the Service Level Policy.

Service Level Policy Rules

Rules represent the conditions you define to measure and report performance for the specific service that is referencing or contains the configuration of a Service Level Policy. When a defined system condition matches a defined rule, an alert is raised in Policy Manager.

Note: You can select from available SLA Custom Alert Codes in the drop-down list box on the Alert Code field. You can also enter a new SLA Custom Alert Code directly into the Service Level Policy Rule line item. The minimum SLA Alert Code start number is 700000. For more information on adding a new alert code in the Alerts > Alert Codes section of the Management Console, refer to About Alert Codes in the Policy Manager Online Help (accessible via the Policy Manager Management Console).

A rule is composed of the elements shown below.

Rule Element Description
Alert Code

The Alert Code identification number that represents the alert that is sent when the defined condition is met. This value is manually entered into a text box.

Metric

A Metric is a measurable function (such as a Response Time) that is used in the rule calculation. Available values are shown below.

Service Level Policy Metrics

Note: The Total metric options add up the combined size of all the message payload over the time period.

Operator

An Operator is a symbol that represents a mathematical function (<=, >=, etc.) used to limit or expand your search to qualify the metric. Available values are shown below.

Service Level Policy Metrics

Value

A Value is a numerical value that establishes the threshold of the metric. This value is manually entered into a text box.

Units

A Unit is the unit measure by which the value is counted. Available values are shown below.

Service Level Policy Units

Interval

An Interval is the time interval over which the rule is measured. Available values are shown below.

Service Level Policy Intervals

Example Rule Definition

Send alert code [30002] when the [Maximum Response Time] for Service Operation is:

[>] [5] [Seconds] in a [1 hour] time interval.

Before you begin creating rules, review the list of available alert codes to determine which codes you want to use. One common approach is to establish a series of two or three thresholds, each using the same metric:

  • The first threshold indicates that there might be a problem with a service monitored by the Service Level Policy.
  • The second indicates that there is a problem, but it might not be a serious one.
  • The third is a warning that there is a major problem that needs to be addressed immediately.
Example Rule Definition with Thresholds
Rule Significance
Send alert code [30002] when the [Maximum Response Time] for Service Operation is [>] [5] [Seconds] in a [15 minute] time interval.

Response time is slow, but tolerable. Monitor this service.

Send alert code [30004] when the [Maximum Response Time] for Service Operation is [>] [30] [Seconds] in a [1 hour] time interval. Response time is unacceptable. Investigate.
Send alert code [30007] when the [Maximum Response Time] for Service Operation is [>] [2] [Minutes] in a [ANY] time interval. Response time is critical. Address immediately.
Service Level Policy Access Time

Access Time is configured by defining an Access Interval. An Access Interval is composed of one or more Access Days (Sunday through Saturday). Each Access Day is configured with an Access Time that can represent one complete day (All Day) or a date range (Range) that is specified using a 24-hour clock format (HH:MM).

Access Time Option Description
Access Day

Checkbox options that allow you to select the days you would like to include in the Access Interval. Selectable days: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Access Time A drop-down list box option that allows you to select All Day or Range for each Access Day defined in the Access Interval. All Day represents a full 24-hour day. Range allows you to select To and From times using a 24-hour clock format (HH:MM).
From Time (Hours:Minutes) Hour and Minute drop-down list boxes that allow you to select the From Time range to apply to the Access Time selection for the Access Interval definition. Hour increments are based on a 24-Hour.
To Time (Hours:Minutes)

Hour and Minute drop-down list boxes that allow you to select the To Time range to apply to the Access Time selection for the Access Interval definition. Hour increments are based on a 24-hour period.

Time Zone

A drop-down list box that allows you to select the time zone to apply to the Access Time for the current Access Interval definition.

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Configuration

Let's take a quick walkthrough of the Service Level Policy configuration process to get you started.

Step 1: Add Policy

In Policy Manager, to create a Service Level Policy instance, go to Policies > Operational Policies and choose Add Policy.

Step 2: Modify Policy

When you click Modify to make changes to the Service Level Policy on the Policy Details page, the initial policy looks like this:

Configure the policy options based on your requirements and click Apply. For a functional overview of each rule element, refer to the Service Level Policy Options section.

Step 3: Attach Policy

After you've saved your policy, you can attach it to a web service, operation, or binding.

Step 4: Test Policy and View Monitoring Data

After you've attached the Service Level Policy to a web service, operation, or binding, send a request to your service and go to the Services > Monitoring section to view the results for Logs, Real Time Charts, and Historical Charts. For more information on using the monitoring functions, refer to the Policy Manager Online Help, available via the Help button.

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Use Cases for Policy Manager

For a list of Policy Manager-specific use cases for the Service Level Policy, refer to Service Level Policy Usage Scenarios for Policy Manager.

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Use Cases for the Akana API Platform (Community Manager)

For a list of Community Manager-specific use cases for the Service Level Policy, refer to Service Level Policy Usage Scenarios for Community Manager.

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