London software testing news UK

End-to-end testing tips

Posted in Software testing by testing in London on December 6, 2007

From Search CIO

  1. Keeping it real
    Be sure to perform real world end-to-end tests. Testing in a lab environment can provide great value for achieving and understanding the best-case performance of an application. However, the lab environment and the target production environment are usually quite different — not only in regards to the application’s core infrastructure (i.e., hardware and software configurations), but also due to the existence of other networking devices and shared network links that may impact the performance of the target application.Ancillary networking devices may have quality-of-service polices or traffic shaping policies that prioritise certain applications and/or protocols. Security devices may block certain messages. Shared load-balancing devices may not be configured in the manner in which the application is expecting to manage user sessions. Underpowered network devices may have limitations in the number of concurrent connections that can be managed. All of those factors can impact the availability of the application by creating a logical brick wall in front of the application, even though the application’s core infrastructure has not reached its limitations.
  2. Swimming downstream
    End-to-end testing should also take into account the downstream applications that may be providing services, such as order fulfilment or customer service. It’s quite plausible that the customer-facing application was able to support the increase in consumer demand of the holidays, but the downstream applications were not validated. As a result the order distribution process may become overwhelmed or the rise in customer service-related calls might overload the customer support application or phone system.
  3. Talk the talk
    When choosing a quality assurance and testing company, the ability to utilise most mainstream automated performance testing tools should definitely be a pre-requisite. But it should not be the key qualifying characteristic, since it is very easy to use these automated solutions improperly. Solution providers need to demonstrate knowledge from a business perspective and translate the needs of the business into realistic automated solutions that properly emulate its end users, as well as collect key performance data that is applicable to the line of business.Proper testing cannot be achieved within 30 minutes, which some advertisements have claimed. Proper testing needs to be carefully planned and implemented weeks or even months in advance of the particular holiday season in order to properly test and implement changes if necessary.

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