Technology performance software company Compuware has launched a free online tool that provides real-time visualisations and alerts of outages in third-party web services.

The tool, known as Outage Analyzer, collects live data from Compuware's APM SaaS platform Gomez, which is used by 4,000 enterprise customers worldwide to measure application performance.

Gomez takes more than eight billion measurements a day from 150,000 test locations worldwide. The data is fed into Compuware's proprietary anomaly detection engine that automatically identifies availability issues with third-party web services that are impacting performance of the web.

Using big data technologies such as Flume and Hadoop, Outage Analyzer then correlates the outage data, identifies the source of the problem, calculates the impact and lists the probable causes in real-time.

“What makes this unique is that most competitors have nodes in the core backbone of the internet, whereas Gomez monitors the last mile – which is consumer-grade devices in every town, city country around the world,” said Michael Allen, EMEA strategic director of APM at Compuware.

“The last mile is important because a lot of these third parties have distributed infrastructure themselves. To really measure the regional performance of a third party you need that regional last mile visibility, because problems are often regionally affected.”

Outage Analyzer displays the sources of outages on a map, along with information on the current status, impact – based on severity and geography – and duration, and the certainty and probable cause of the outage.

The tool also offers a timeline view that shows the spread and escalation of the outage over time.

Users can automatically view the most recent outages, filtered by severity of impact, or search for outages in specific IPs, IP ranges or service domains. This allows users to find the outages in services that are potentially impacting their own applications.

They can also sign-up to automatically receive alerts via RSS and Twitter feeds, and can specify the exact types of incidents to be alerted based on popularity of the third-party web service provider, certainty of an outage and by the geographical region impacted.

“Third party service dependency is accelerating. To get applications to market that offer a faster, richer, more social experience, everyone is plugging in things like Facebook, Google Maps, analytics and security. And in turn those third parties are reliant on other third parties, so it's a real spiderweb of dependency,” said Allen.

“Now, if you're thinking of plugging something into your web property, you can actually go and see how reliable they've been over the last 3 or 6 months.”

Outage Analyzer builds on the success of, a project that measures the performance and availability of cloud services. The website has become a valuable tool for enterprises choosing a cloud provider, and has also won business for Compuware from providers who want to improve their ranking on the site.

Outage Analyzer is free to use initially, but Compuware is planning to introduce a premium version in 2013.