Performance bottle necks are a biggest hindrance in the success of any system. In the age when Information Technology rules the lives of people through websites and Mobile Applications at every step of life, the performance of these systems cause a huge impact on the reliability of the applications and software. Performance Testing of these systems require meticulous planning and methodical execution.
Performance Testing falls into various categories like Load Testing, Stress Testing and Spike Testing to mention a few.
The Performance Testing Cycle
Challenges for Performance Testing
A software application should be rigorously tested with the correct testing procedures before releasing to the customers. Like any other procedures, Performance Testing also comes with a number of Challenges.
- Selecting the Environment and the Testing Tools
Most of the clients do not have dedicated environments for performance testing. Ideally tests should be conducted on real scenarios or the production environment. Because of practical problems or budgetary issues, it is not possible many times to conduct the tests in this environment.
It is ideal to create a replica of production environment. But due to budget constraints, the client may not be able to provide the environment. Hence the performance testers have to consider varying scenarios with the limited hardware resource availability in order to get the accurate results.
A simple example could be that it is difficult to test the scenario where thousands of users log in into the system concurrently.
Identifying the perfect Performance Testing tool is walking on a tight rope with a lot of constraints to measure up.
- Budget & Licensing costs
- Technology and Platform
- Hardware requirements
- Tool training\support\forms
- Browser and OS compatibility
- Result generation option
- Offering a Complete Test Coverage
It can only be a magician who can cover a performance testing script covering all the functionalities of an application. It is very important that the performance testing scenarios are indicative of various parameters.
It is not feasible to create a performance testing script that covers all the functionality of an application. After gathering various scenarios the key functionalities to be automated are to be identified to ensure that most of the Use Cases are attended to. Automating the functionality of an application requires the consideration that a variety of end users would be using the system in their own contexts and estimate the user data accordingly.
Data and resource setup play an important role in performance testing. In terms of data, small and large numeric values can be entered, alphabets, words and sentences can also be considered in order to render varying results.
- Specific Non-functional Requirements
Clearly defined requirements that are necessary to develop a system as per the expectation. It guides the developers to write the software to meet the requirements and the tester to validate the quality.
A system has two kinds of requirements, functional and nonfunctional and both have to measure up to the standards set by the performance tests. A performance tester should know where the system stands in terms of all these performances.
Functional Requirement Testing is more specific and it checks
- Functionality to be covered
- Types of input data
- Algorithms and flow of actions
Non Functional Requirement is less specific and it checks
- Analyzing the Performance Test Results
This is indeed one of the most difficult and the most important of the challenges for Performance testing.
A good amount of judgement and thorough knowledge of the system is required to analyze the various performance result reports besides the tools used for the actual tests.
An experienced tester should be able to judge the scenarios and if the test is complete or not. The tester should be able to constantly refine the tests and keep adding tests according to the situations evaluated during the course of time.
The Perfect Performance Test
A mature Performance test setup meets the challenges posed by the scenarios for the application or the software. The Quality of the application is assured once these tests are cleared. A fool-proof Performance Test sets out to determine the health of the system under all circumstances keeping a few key parameters in mind.
- Speed & effectiveness of the system when the application is running
- Performance and response time of the software on various devices
- Scalability & Stability of the system with consistent performance under variant load
On A Parting Note
We, Software Testing Solution ensure a right mix of Manual and Automated Testing and provide support through the Testing Life Cycle. Our unbiased test reports help smoother implementations with near zero post delivery defects and higher customer satisfaction.
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