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How to Monitor Live Production API Traffic with Runscope Traffic Gateways and Alerts

By Neil Mansilla on .

Runscope started off several years back as an API debugging tool that allowed developers to inspect in-flight API traffic and debug integration issues. Even as our product evolved to include comprehensive API testing and performance monitoring, we’ve always stayed true to our original mission of helping our customers not just detect API problems, but also solve them. With our latest release of Live Traffic Alerts, we provide our customers with a new layer for API problem-solving—catching key API transaction errors with live production traffic monitoring. By notifying your team about failed API calls in near real-time, your team can respond and remediate issues quickly.

Many businesses can be deeply affected by errors or anomalies that occur in production and cannot be simulated with traditional functional monitoring. Some of these scenarios include catching declined credit card payments or a failed attempt at creating a lead in a database. By including this level of monitoring with the proactive monitoring you already use from Runscope (or if you don’t, you can sign up here to try it out), your team can keep tabs on slow endpoints and retry erroneous API calls to ensure that you’re meeting your SLAs and not losing valuable engagement with customers.

Four Easy Methods of Collecting Traffic for Monitoring

Live Traffic Alerts works by evaluating all API calls stored in your Runscope buckets. If you’re already using Runscope for API tests, you may have noticed that the Traffic Inspector for your bucket includes all of your API test calls. But what about live production traffic? How is it collected into your bucket to be analyzed?

Runscope has four traffic collection methods (in addition to collecting API test traffic) that work with Live Traffic Alerts:

  • Runscope Global Traffic Gateway: Also referred to as Gateway URLs, this is the most common way to collect traffic for Alerts for public and third-party APIs. With a simple modification to an API hostname, traffic is transparently routed through the Global Traffic Gateway between the calling client and the destination API.

  • Capture URLs: Similar to RequestBin, every bucket has its own unique capture URL. This is useful for for monitoring and debugging webhook API calls.

  • Runscope API: Post API transaction details directly into your bucket using the Messages resource. This method can be used as an alternative to the gateways.

  • Runscope Gateway Agent: An on-premises gateway installed on your local infrastructure. This method is used to collect traffic for APIs on a private network.

Defining Live Alerts Criteria

Live Traffic Alerts is very flexible, allowing you to match against nearly every aspect of an API call, including the request, response and connection metadata. For example, when setting up a traffic alert to catch slow API calls, you define rules against the response time. There are many other matching criteria that can be combined and evaluated against, such as URL, parameters, headers, request/response body, source IP address, etc.

When matches are found, the Live Traffic Alerts dashboard is updated in real time. Additionally, alert notifications can be sent by email to any team member, posted to a chat channel using the Slack, HipChat or Flowdock integrations, or even posted to one or more callback URLs. 

Check out our live demo of Live Traffic Alerts below and how to use the Runscope Traffic Gateways to start monitoring and debugging APIs, all in one place. Then, give it a try by signing up for a free trial of Runscope today. If you’re currently on a free plan and want to try Live Traffic Alerts for yourself, contact our Support team and they’ll set you right up.

Categories: webinar, product, monitoring, howto, debugging

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