How to speed up “test-analysis-scenario update” cycles for load testing of assembled applications?
When the application’s components are assembled, integration testing is much more complex than unit load testing. In Agile environments, it is important to adopt the right strategy so that performance testing does not bottleneck the development cycle.
Building an effective strategy to hedge performance risk
It is not possible to test 100% of an application. So, it is essential to define the riskiest areas of focus for load testing depth and intensity. In practice, 10-15% of the most successful test scenarios will identify 75-90% of the major problems.
For proper risk diagnosis, you must have sufficient knowledge of the application’s architecture. Testers, application managers, and architects must work closely together to ensure this knowledge is shared.
Tools and practices responsible for accelerating the creation of complex load test scenarios
- Gray box testing for the most important components of your application
- Automating variabilization, correlation, and randomization
- Functional test scenarios (e.g., Selenium) to speed up the creation of load tests
With NeoLoad, you can import functional Selenium test scenarios for use during load testing. All you want to learn about NeoLoad’s features to design complex scenarios.
Ingredients of effective load test analysis
Agile developers need to understand the root of the performance issue for quick resolution. Diagnosis quality and analysis efficiency are essential load test contributions to the requirements which help build confidence.
- Actionable data synthesis (e.g., whether they can withstand decision support)
- Understanding of the role/skills of the individual using the load test report
- Use of APM/profiling tool to identify the piece of code responsible for performance regression
NeoLoad offers a test analysis capability allowing you to identify a performance problem root, leaving more time to solve quickly. Read more about test results analysis.
Automating the update of your load test scenarios
Updating load testing scripts can often represent >50% of the teams’ effort. As the application evolves, it is often necessary to re-write the test scenarios completely. Here’s how to accelerate, or even automate, this maintenance activity nearly in-full:
- Load test tool applied to detect code modifications; change part of the test
- Rely on functional test maintenance to fully automate the update
Use NeoLoad’s automatic user path update feature to reduce the time it takes to maintain your scripts by up to 90%. For more about NeoLoad’s automatic user path update.
Integration of load testing in DevOps toolchain for continuous testing
Collaborative load testing
Application performance is a concern for all members of the Agile team, not just those performing load testing services. It is important that your test results are accessible to everyone, at all times:
- Each team member must be able to consult the test reports
- It should be possible to monitor the performance measures in real-time during test execution (before the end of a load test, which can last several hours). Developers can start issue correction earlier.
With NeoLoad, all teams work together on the load test. Results are shared in a centralized database similar to real-time monitoring results during the tests. Learn more about collaboration capabilities.
The load testing platform’s interaction with your DevOps toolchain
To enable fast and efficient acceleration of Agile and DevOps processes, it is necessary to integrate your load testing tool with the other solutions within your DevOps chain:
- Incorporation into the Continuous Integration servers to automate load tests
- Assimilation with functional testing tools to measure user experience/automate scenario maintenance
- Alliance with APM tools to analyze tests at the code level
- To learn more, read our article about how to choose a load testing tool
NeoLoad offers ready-to-use integrations to facilitate successful toolchain interaction. You can create your custom integrations with NeoLoad’s API.
Essential production performance monitoring information most useful for load testing
Performance feedback gleaned during production with your APM tool is invaluable load testing approach refinement data. Armed with this insight, you can:
- Evaluate load levels observed in production to adapt the testing strategy, reproduce realistic conditions
- Measure actual service levels that condition SLAs in testing
- Identify risk areas in your application
Load testing to performance engineering
The art of load testing continues to evolve towards traditional performance engineering practices, yet application performance responsibility is still reserved for a small number of specialists today. This evolution, which will vary by business based on their performance testing philosophies/corresponding Agile/DevOps adoption, represents a profound shift in the methods, skills, and tools used by the tester. At the core, the skill set of the traditional performance tester requires expansion:
- Knowledge of how to understand and evaluate the application’s architecture
- Awareness of how to best incorporate automation into the toolchain
- Communication and collaboration skill advancement to become a trusted performance partner with others responsible for the performance
In the end, the “new” performance engineer becomes the protector of performance throughout the project lifecycle. Their key responsibilities include:
- Test strategy creation after execution of thorough risk analysis
- Load testing automation enablement
- Supporting developers with the creation of a unit load test scenario
- Monitoring of strategy implementation during production; establishment of an incident reporting process
Try NeoLoad, the most automated performance testing platform for enterprise organizations continuously testing from APIs to applications.