The first step in performance or load testing a web application is to create
a realistic test script. This script, representing a specific type of end
user, contains steps that are fully automated transactions flows. Often,
complex behaviors need to be emulated as part of these flows. To incorporate
the needed behavior or to handle complex scenarios, testers need to customize
these load scripts. The question is whether you utilize a tool that takes a
GUI driven approach for script customization/manipulation, or whether you
choose a tool which requires the use of a programming language.
As Performance testers, we typically evaluate several load testing tools
before diving into a project. Some of us prefer the GUI driven approach to
creating load scripts because, being results driven, we want to get the test
up and running as quickly as possible. The GUI approach saves... (more)
When the performance of a web application starts to degrade, often IT
managers jump to the conclusion that more hardware is required. This
increased infrastructure can be expensive and may not even solve the
underlying problem. Let's talk about tuning as a solution to higher
scalability. It's been debated as to whether tuning is a science or an art
but we can all agree on the goal: alleviate bottlenecks so that the web
application can scale to a higher workload. Tuning is more efficient and cost
effective than adding more hardware to your deployment. However, you need to
have t... (more)
Often we see the workload to a web application measured by throughput. It's a
way of quantifying the volume of requests/responses in relation to time.
Transactions per second or TPS is the most common ratio used. A performance
test plan usually contains certain throughput goals. The "GO or NO GO"
decision for rolling out a new release or architectural change relies heavily
upon a web application handling a certain TPS. Management wants a "Pass"
stamp, but it's your job to make sure that the achieved TPS is indeed
realistic - not an illusion of phony numbers. My advice is to "keep... (more)
The ability to conduct effective performance testing has become a highly
desired skillset within the IT industry. Unfortunately, these highly
sought-after skills are consistently in short supply. "Front-end testers" can
work with a tool to create a realistic load and although this is an important
skillset, creating the load is just the beginning of any performance project.
Understanding the load patterns and tuning the environment makes the unique
talents of a "performance engineer" worth their weight in gold.
Performance engineers require skills in data analysis such as resource ... (more)
How does the approach to performance / load testing extranet mobile
applications change from testing other RIAs? In some ways, not much. Yes, the
user activity for every mobile application will be unique, but the same goes
for every web application. Different technology stacks, different
deployments, different load patterns, different types of users profiles, and
different content delivery… All make each web application, in its own
right, unique. The approach to methodical performance testing for capacity
planning and identifying scalability issues remains the same.
The mobile ... (more)