Abstract. Based on insights from the implementation of commercial products for data-centre resource management, we identified key challenges in the development of cost-effective autonomic solutions, and best practices for overcoming these challenges. In a related paper, we proposed a generic autonomic framework that complies with these best practices, and suggested ways in which existing technologies could be used to realise this framework. In this paper, we describe the actual implementation of our autonomic framework as a service-oriented architecture, and we show how the universal policy engine at its core can be configured to manage the allocation of server capacity to services of different priorities. This case study demonstrates the effectiveness of our generic approach to autonomic solution development in an area of great interest for commercial data centres, research laboratories and application service providers.