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Towards the automation of claiming in SLA-driven services

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Current software industry is evolving into a service­centric scenario and consequently, the importance to create reliable service consumptions amongst organizations is a key point. In such a context, the concept of Service Level Agreement (SLA) represents the foundation to express the responsibilities (i.e. rights and obligations) of service consumer and provider during the consumption. However, in spite there has been a major effort in both academia and industry to develop languages and frameworks to support SLAs, there still remain important challenges to address such as how to automate the detection of a violation of the SLAs and how to react accordingly in order to claim for a compensation. Specifically, in this paper we focus on the definition of the automated claiming of SLAs problem characterized as the set of processes of gathering, checking and explaining the evidences associated with the service consumption within the context of an SLA. In order to identify the key requirements to automate the claiming of SLAs, we analyse the real case of the Simple Storage Service (S3) provided by Amazon, that is regulated by an SLA. Based on our analysis we propose a set of extensions to current prominent SLA language specification (WS­Agreement) and conceptualize a list of research challenges to automate the management of the claiming process.

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