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Breaking Boundaries: Taking Synthetic Monitoring Beyond Alerts

Tom Gerhard (
Murray Hill East
Average rating: ****.
(4.43, 7 ratings)
Slides:   1-PDF 

Synthetic monitoring tools do more than simply alert you when your page performance is slow—they give you the ability to garner in-depth insight into your site’s performance and provide the data you need to make strategic decisions.

As VP of Performance Engineering at, I’ve examined countless infrastructure changes using synthetic monitoring data.

In this presentation, I will demonstrate how you can use synthetic monitoring tools to evaluate infrastructure changes before they go live, schedule one-time and scheduled tests for performance diagnostics, and determine the impact that application changes, like domain sharding, will have on your performance.

At, we routinely use synthetic monitoring to evaluate infrastructure changes, testing both before and after implementation whenever possible.
This data has allowed us to:

  • Evaluate domain sharding using hostname overrides
  • Evaluate infrastructure changes, new servers, CDN, etc. using hostname or DNS overrides
  • Run diagnostics using instant tests or targeted scheduled tests to test specific scenarios
  • Use private tests nodes to keep caches warm in QA and development environments and to test internal apps

This session is sponsored by Catchpoint

Photo of Tom Gerhard

Tom Gerhard

Tom Gerhard (@TomGerhard) is VP, Performance Engineering at, where he is a key advocate for front-end WPO R&D initiatives, among other duties. His interest in front-end performance optimization was sparked “way back when” by a site that rendered slowly in IE 4, and has continued to grow since then.