Saturday, September 13, 2008

Web Performance: GrabPERF Performance Measurement System Needs YOU!

In 2004-2005, as a lark, I created my own Web performance measurement system, using PERL, PHP and MySQL. In August 2005, I managed to figure out how to include remote agents.

I dubbed it...GrabPERF. An odd name, but an amalgamation of "Grab" and "Performance" that made sense to my mind at the time. I also never though that it would go beyond my house, a couple of basement servers, and a cable modem.

In the intervening three years, I have managed to:

  • scale the system to handle over 250 individual measurements

  • involve nine remote measurement locations

  • move the system to the Technorati datacenter

  • provide key operational measurement data to system visitors

Although the system lives in the Technorati datacenter and is owned by them, I provide the majority of the day-to-day maintenance on a volunteer basis, if only to try and keep my limited coding skills up.

But this post is not about me. It's about GrabPERF.

Thanks to the help of a number of volunteers, I have measurement locations in the San Francisco Bay Area, Washington DC, Boston, Portugal, Germany and Argentina.

While this is a good spread, I am still looking to gather volunteers who can host a GrabPERF measurement location. The areas where GrabPERF has the most need are:

  • Asia-Pacific

  • South Asia (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh)

  • UK and Continental Europe

  • Central Europe, including the ancestral homeland of Polska

It would also be great to get a funky logo for the system, so if you are a graphic designer and want to create a cool GrabPERF logo, let me know.

The current measurement system requires Linux, cURL and a few add-on Perl modules. I am sure that I could work on other operating systems, I just haven't had the opportunity to experiment.

If you or your organization can help, please contact me using the GrabPERF contact form.

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