Administrators can see hits on each piece of content, the amount of traffic participating in an online community forum, or the frequency of use of "portlets," the small applications that deliver a portal's services to users.
Plumtree Analytics Server uses a different architecture for viewing portal activity than Web-site tools that depend on historical analysis of application server log files, says Jay Simons, VP of product marketing. Analytics Server plugs filters into several operating areas of a site's application server. The filters collect traffic statistics, response-time information, and other data and report them back to administrators on a continuous basis.
Understanding portal-usage patterns helps guide future portal design and development. Maturing enterprise portals lead to interlocking complexities as the many portal components, such as scripting languages and Java applications or application servers and Web servers, interact with one another. "We designed Analytics Server to help customers understand usage patterns for better design, management, and investment planning" of their portal pages and applications, Simons said in a statement.
Plumtree is one of several vendors trying to address how to improve portal performance. Site-performance specialists such as Mercury Interactive Corp. test Web-site application performance and measure user-response times. Content-management systems, such as Documentum and Vignette, offer performance metrics on the operation of their systems. And Wily Technology Inc. offers both Java application-performance measurement and bottleneck diagnosis with its Wily Introscope.
Plumtree Analytics Server is available immediately for portals running on Microsoft's Internet Information Server, Apache Tomcat, BEA Systems' WebLogic, and IBM's WebSphere Application Server. Pricing starts at $10,000.