Developer Partner Community

  • September 5, 2016

WebLogic Work Managers – A Practical Overview by Andy Overton

Juergen Kress
PaaS Partner Adoption


In this post, Andy Overton presents an insight into Oracle WebLogic Work Managers, going through the basics of what they are, how they are used, and providing deeper configuration and deployment advice. Using a test project, he examines the practical application of work managers, and looks at the control you can get over request handling and prioritisation.

So, first of all, what are Work Managers?

Prior to WebLogic 9, Execute Queues were used to handle thread management. You created thread-pools to determine how workload was handled. Different types of work were executed in different queues based on priority and order requirements. The issue was that it is very difficult to determine the correct number of threads required to achieve the throughput your application requires and avoid deadlocks.

Work Managers are much simpler. All managers share a common thread pool and priority is determined by a priority-based queue. The thread pool size is dynamically adjusted in order to maximise throughput and avoid deadlocks. In order to differentiate and prioritise between different applications, you state objectives via constraints and request classes (e.g. fair share or response time).

More on this later!

Why use Work Managers?

If you don’t set up your own Work Managers, the default will be used. This gives all of your applications the same priority and they are prevented from monopolising threads. Whilst this is often sufficient, it may be that you want to ensure that:

  • Certain applications have higher priority over others.
  • Certain applications return a response within a certain time.
  • Certain customers or users get a better quality of service.
  • A minimum thread constraint is set in order to avoid deadlock.
Types of Work Manager
  • Default – Used if no other Work Manager is configured. All applications are given an equal priority.
  • Global – Domain-scoped and are defined in config.xml. Applications use the global Work Manager as a blueprint and create their own instance. The work each application does can then be distinguished from other applications.
  • Application – Application-scoped and are applied only to a specific application. Specified in either weblogic-application.xml, weblogic-ejb-jar.xml, or weblogic.xml.
Constraints and Request Classes

A constraint defines the minimum and maximum number of threads allocated to execute requests and the total number of requests that can be queued or executing before the server begins rejecting requests. Constraints can be shared by several Work Managers. Read the complete article here.

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