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In this paper we introduce the concept of service domain, to be used as a major building block for implementing service-oriented architectures in large computing grids in which tens or hundreds of services are offered to customers. A service domain maps a collection of comparable or related services to a single logical service. We describe an architecture for service domains that uses a set of policy rules for managing the collection of services and that automatically dispatches the “best” service available to satisfy user requests. The architecture has built-in autonomic properties in that a service domain implementation monitors the events within its control and triggers adjustment actions in its member services, including recovery from service failure and handling of topology changes. We describe a reference implementation of the service domain architecture that is publicly available as a development toolkit, and we discuss its application in the implementation of a large grid now in progress.
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