How to load test & tune performance on your API (Part II)

May 14th, 2015 |

These posts are based on Mark’s presentation at APIStrat/APIDays Berlin. The video is now available on YouTube.

Here is the second part of our how-to on running a load test on your API. In the first part, we walked through the process of setting up your load testing environment and deciding what are the right metrics to measure and the different approaches to measuring them. We also provided some guidance on what tools to use and finally obtained real data points about how our API was performing.

We will now look at ways of securely exposing your API to the public while making sure that its performance is not being affected.

How adding an access control layer affects your API

At this point we have a reasonably high performance API, but what would happen if someone started sending traffic at a rate beyond 16.000 req/second? How can you pr…

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How to load test & tune performance on your API (Part I)

April 30th, 2015 |

The role of APIs has evolved a lot over the past few years. Not long ago, web APIs were mainly used as simple integration points between internal systems. That is no longer true. Nowadays, APIs often are the core system of a company, one on top of which several client – web and mobile – applications are built.

When APIs were only used for back-office tasks such as extracting reports, their performance was never a key factor. However, APIs have slowly moved towards the critical path between an end-user and the service a company offers. This increase in criticality entails a direct consequence: performance of APIs really matters now.

It doesn’t matter how extremely well built your front-end applications are if the API data sources take several seconds to respond. Or even worse, if their performance is unreliable. Performance matters a great deal, and more so in a world of microservices, which means the source of what a client application shows is probably being aggregated from multiple APIs behind the scenes.

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Practical Advice For The Stages Of The API Lifecycle (Part 2/4)

November 12th, 2014 |

The API lifecycle is made up of four stages, which an API provider would iterate through several times as part of an API program: Plan/Design, Build/Integrate, Operate/Manage, and Share/Engage. You can find a more detailed description of the API Lifecycle in the first post, in which we also describe the Plan/Design stage.

API Lifecycle Stage 2: Build/Integrate

After the objectives of the Plan/Design stage are achieved, an API provider can move on to the Build/Integrate stage. This stage entails the real development of the API. This usually means coding an API from scratch, integrating with existing systems, or a mix of both. Based on the paradigms, technologies, or data formats chosen in the Plan/Design phase, this can be more or less complex and time-consuming. Especially for RESTful APIs there is already a plethora of frameworks and libraries available, which help to build such …

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