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Execution Testing Tips and Techniques

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  1. Performance Testing Tips and Techniques Understanding Operational Profiles Dale L Perry Software Quality Engineering

  2. Performance Profiles • One of the key activities in performance testing is to decide what type of load or loads to place on the system/application • There are many variations of performance testing that we can select from so we first have to determine what is needed ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  3. Types Of Performance Testing • The three most common types of software performance testing include: • Testing which is driven by what we want to measure • Testing which is based on the source or type of the load • Testing to stress the system or find its limits ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  4. Understanding Load • Once we have an idea of what we want to accomplish • The general type of testing we want • What tests we want to run • Now we have to decide on the volume of activity and the composition of that volume, load (i.e. workload) ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  5. Load (Operational) Profile • To better simulate the real world, not only should the load size be estimated, but also a profile of the users/activities that make up the load needs to be created ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  6. Test Sample Sizes • Most factors which we want to measure, such as response time, vary based on many factors; both known and unknown • This means we cannot measure something once but must sample it several times in order to compute a meaningful average • How big does the sample need to be? This is a rough rule of thumb for the relationship between sample size and accuracy Sample Accuracy Size (roughly) 30 50% 100 25% 200 10% 1,000 3% ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  7. When To Sample – Sampling Errors 9 7 Eastern Central Mountain Pacific ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  8. Number And Types Of Users • The mix of users(events) may vary by time period • Special events can alter the mix Buyers Browsers ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  9. Concurrency ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  10. Think Times • The time it takes a client (or virtual client) to respond to an application may have a significant impact on the number of clients an application can support • This is a key aspect of concurrency ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  11. Background Load (Noise) • What additional activities need to be considered to accurately reflect the performance degradation caused by network and other application loads, “background noise”? ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2

  12. Summary • A successful software performance test plan starts with knowing what it is you want to accomplish • What types of tests do you want? • What loads and mixes are are needed for these tests • Operational profile ©2005-2006 Collard & Company/SQE V2.2