IBM's initial implementation of the Web Services Distributed Management (WSDM) Web Event Format (WEF) standard is the Common Base Event . The Common Event Infrastructure (CEI) is IBM's implementation of a consistent, unified set of APIs and infrastructure for the creation, transmission, persistence and distribution of a wide range of business, system and network Common Base Event formatted events.
CEI is based upon the Autonomic Computing Division's Common Base Event specification, which defines a standard format for event information, which devices and software use to keep track of transactions and other activity.
As a producer and consumer of events, IBM Software Group and System Group products will adopt these standards. The WSDM standard resulted from a collaborative industry effort and was approved in 2005 by the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS) standards body.
Common elements of CEI include:
- Public interfaces to build event sources
- Public interfaces for the receipt of "real time" events
- Public interfaces for the querying of historical event data
- Capability for pluggable event stores
Once embedded into a product, CEI has several interfaces and APIs that are exposed to the customer. These interfaces generally fall into the following categories:
- The CEI Event Submission Interfaces (Event Source) allows applications to create and send events to the management server, which will allow customers, business partners and ISVs the opportunity to drive services and create new applications. We will leverage Tivoli-Ready, WebSphere and Data partners.
- CEI Event Subscription Interfaces (Event Server) allows applications to subscribe to particular type of events as they arrive "real time" at the server.*
- CEI Event Query Interfaces (Event Server) allows applications to query historical event information from the CEI data store.
"Organizations require a means of leveraging the full spectrum of system-related and business events across their extended enterprises. IBM's Common Event Infrastructure provides an effective framework for accomplishing this goal, fostering comprehensive, event-driven management capabilities across the complete IT environment, including Web services managed by AmberPoint."
- Paul Butterworth, Chief Technology Officer, AmberPoint
By sharing common event information, correlation from the business system outage to the IT resource outage where the problem is - is possible. Here are some examples:
- CEI offers a means to investigate a particular sequence of events. You can discover why a particular customer's order took three weeks longer than expected.
- CEI offers a means to allow historical analysis of past performance. CEI can be used as an indicator of future behavior. The time in which a particular supplier usually fulfills an order may be a good indication for how long the supplier will take to deliver the next set of supplies.
- CEI offers a means to maintain a historical record of business commitments. Some businesses are legally required to keep an audit trail of the key decisions and promises made by the business. While not claiming to support non-repudiation logging directly, CEI is a facilitator by providing a central point where the required data can be assembled and passed onto an external tamper-proof log.
- CEI offers a means of triggering of some action when an unexpected event occurs. To alert the business that a particular customer's order has taken three weeks longer than it should have.
- CEI offers a means to facilitate the ability to view cross-application data through business dashboards.