Integrating Performance Testing into the Agile Development Process


4 hours to have fully working using a traditional tool, and which would require complex scripting, takes just a couple of minutes using StressTester™.

Correct testing. It is no use a tool significantly simplifying the performance testing process if it does not allow you to simulate everything that will happen in the real world.

StressTester™ allows you to configure all of the following (every item is as important as each other if you are going to correctly simulate real user behavior):

  • Scaling to the load required without the need for large injection hardware; a typical desktop will simulate 1000+ users
  • Specifying and varying sleep / think times between user requests
  • Correct handling of hidden application variables, cookies and headers automatically – in exactly the same way the browser does
  • Parameterization of all data that will change in the real world
  • Ability to extract data from applications responses to use in subsequent requests
  • Exact validation of application responses
  • Variation of the route a simulated user takes through the User Journey
  • Ability to simulate different browsers. Although last, this is not to be underestimated - especially for software that will be used by the public over the internet. Are you aware the Internet Explorer 8 can open 3 times as many connections to a web server than the previous version did? Potentially that is 3 times the number of concurrent requests and therefore 3 times the total load.

StressTester™ offers the ability to customize all of the above using intuitive screens that present the relevant fields in a logical order so even non-experienced performance testers are led through the thought process to ensure their User Journeys correctly simulate real world users.

Easy maintenance. There are tools that are quick to initially configure but you have to repeat all or the majority of the configuration every time your application changes. In the Agile world this is a non-starter as we expect the application to change, sometimes significantly, between iterations.

StressTester™ offers the ability to reorganize the flow of pages in a User Journey, edit what has been previously configured (including inserting new steps) or re-recording parts of a User Journey and replacing the equivalent in the old Journey. In addition, StressTester™ possesses full search/replace and copy/paste functionality, and the ability to mark one or more steps as re-usable between User Journeys (effectively sub-routines but without the need to write the script code).

These features ensure adapting User Journeys for application changes is a simple and quick task.

Immediate diagnosis of problems. If a performance testing tool tells you that a problem exists, but not the cause of the problem, it is no use within a fast moving Agile project.

StressTester™ allows you to monitor deeply into the internal workings of your whole application stack including operating systems, database servers, Java/.NET/etc. environments, web servers and much more.

All the monitoring information is reported in real-time during tests, and is automatically correlated with the performance test data by StressTester™’s analysis engine. When a performance problem occurs, you can quickly identify which monitors have exceeded their thresholds so you immediately know the cause for the problem(s).

Looking at the results from a performance test of a Java application as depicted in Figure-5, it is obvious that the performance degraded once 25 - 30 users were simulated accessing the system (the response times of the web pages are the dark blue and green lines on the graph). StressTester™ has detected and automatically correlated all monitors that exceeded their configurable thresholds and this data is displayed on the same graph.



Figure-5: Identifying Cause of Problem

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