There is no denying that an ideal load test should precisely emulate real-world traffic. Regrettably, the majority of load testing tools fall short in this regard.
Merely running a series of GET requests from an internal server isn’t sufficient to generate an authentic representation of the actual user surge that a site may face globally.
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Due to fiscal and infrastructure constraints, some businesses have been compelled to make do with partial load tests. While this method can offer a certain degree of assurance for a grand product launch or virality, it doesn’t provide total assurance.
Today, we are reviewing LoadView, a dynamic load testing tool from Dotcom-Monitor which enables authenticity in load testing without the need for substantial upfront investment in hardware or software infrastructure.
This Tutorial Covers:
Initiating With LoadView
LoadView, leveraging its cloud-based virtual servers, can generate traffic to your site or application from different international locations. This strategy is notably more realistic and economical compared to maintaining a proprietary load-testing platform.
Our central focus for this review will be conducting a basic load test via LoadView.
Although LoadView can execute rudimentary load tests independently, for a high-impact test, you would be required to install the EveryStep Script Recording tool. While installation doesn’t take more than a few minutes, involvement certainly pays off.
(Note: Click on the image to expand the view.)
With EveryStep, recording test scripts becomes a rather straightforward process involving pointer clicks. To kick off, you just need to input the starting URL and select the browser platform you want to mimic for the test.
EveryStep offers an array of browser emulations spanning from Chrome, Internet Explorer to mobile platforms like iPhone, Google Nexus, and Samsung Galaxy. Such a diverse selection facilitates holistic load testing.
EveryStep introduces a swift and streamlined procedure for test script recording. Just navigate through your site while the tool is recording, and EveryStep will automatically document your activities. During the process, whenever you access a new webpage, you will be prompted to perform content validation.
(Note that EveryStep also provides the choice to deactivate this automatic pop-up for validation.) You are allowed to specify either text or image to validate, enabling a more flexible validation protocol.
After the recording is complete, EveryStep will ask you to execute the script and check for errors before you finalize it. Remember to save it under LoadView Stress Testing and UserView Monitoring, which is an additional testing solution linked to EveryStep.
EveryStep makes script recording simpler, enabling you to swiftly progress to the test setup and execution phase.
Once you have uploaded your recorded script to the LoadView web application, you can define various critical details such as login password and maximum permissible load time. Dotcom-Monitor provides a convenient tooltip feature which acts like a guide through the option selections.
One significant aspect is the Network Elements Filter that permits you to exclude certain elements like images or flash that may prompt errors during the test. This feature is a time-saver as it allows you to continue load testing without completely stopping to tackle each error that crops up.
Loadview stipulates that each test must undergo a calibration both at initial setup and every seven days post-setup. Calibration is a swift one-click process.
This procedure not only screens for errors but also determines the appropriate quantity of virtual users per virtual machine needed for a significant load test without over-tasking the CPU of these virtual machines. The process ensures that these virtual servers don’t become bottlenecks that might skew your test results.
LoadView simplifies the process of structuring a load curve. A few clicks and strokes can gradually step up user numbers, sustain a consistent load and tone down the load as the test progresses. You have the freedom to prescribe as many steps as needed, and the Load Curve graph modifies accordingly.
In the concluding steps of setup, you are prompted to define which geographic zones should fall within the test scope. Though LoadView enables access to cloud-based virtual servers universally, you may not require testing across all regions.
For instance, if your website primarily caters to US-based users, you may not need to test traffic originating from other continents (e.g., the European Union). It would be unnecessary and would just drive up your testing costs.
At the bottom of the Setup page, LoadView provides a detailed summary of costs to uphold transparency and ward off any unexpected surprises. At this point, you may choose to save your setup and exit, or proceed to execute the test.
Executing the Load Test
Upon setup completion, LoadView presents a summary of your test. The summary outlines all the specifications from the previous steps, including the cost.
You just need to enter your email address and hit the button now. Notifications on the commencement and the conclusion of your test will be emailed to you by LoadView. Tests typically are underway within ten minutes, though for certain zones, the start may be deferred by up to an hour.
You can opt to view your test results in real-time or wait for PDF reports to be emailed to you.
You can access and download reports in CSV or PDF formats from within LoadView’s web interface. Upon test completion, LoadView also emails PDF versions of the reports.
The initial report provides a summary of the test.
The next report is the Execution Plan, which contrasts the specified vs actual number of virtual users.
Two of the following charts provide crucial insights:
- Average Response Time
- Peak Response Time
The subsequent graph demonstrates the count of sessions initiated during the test.
Another report highlights the count of errors encountered during the test.
Finally, the percentage of CPU load utilized by each virtual server can be reviewed.
Charts provided by LoadView are thoughtfully designed and simple to comprehend. Plus, the flexibility to analyze data within the downloaded CSV file brings additional value.
In conclusion, LoadView stands as an affordable, practical solution for authentic and significant load testing.
LoadView introduces a major shift in load testing with its unique approach of integrating cloud-based virtual servers and real-user behavior emulation enabled by EveryStep scripts. A wholesome guide in the form of tooltips and a user-friendly design ensures an easy learning curve.
Organizations aiming to improve their load testing should definitely consider LoadView. You can initiate with a LoadView trial account.
In case there are still any queries about this straightforward load testing solution, feel free to contact us.