Testing, testing, and more testing. Developers want to know their product will work well and be able to handle the heavy traffic of a successful launch. At the very least, you need this info by the time your project is ready to go live. This makes for a long process of testing your site.
Before completion, websites will have already undergone automated testing, cross browser testing…the list could go on a few more paragraphs. No matter how many tests you’ve done, to know whether your software can actually handle a large number of end-users, you’re going to need load testing. Here is a list of tools you can use to load test your website and be better prepared for problems that could occur down the line.
Load Testing In A Nutshell
Load testing is a process that simulates end-user demand on your website. The test demonstrates user behavior in a variety of conditions. Load testing will apply ordinary stress and show that your software can perform under normal conditions. By applying abnormal stress, tests will show how your product will perform in unlikely load scenarios.
Testing is important because predicting problems before they arise means less downtime and money spent fixing errors later. Load testing looks for problems throughout the entire life of your software, so it can only be done when your project is nearing completion. Testing can simulate thousands or even millions of users performing the intended tasks.
Pingdom.com offers a modestly priced website speed testing tool. Simply pop in the name of your site, wait a few moments and voila; Pingdom will provide info on load time of the page, analyze it and find bottlenecks. Errors are broken up by content types with easy to read icons.
You can trace your performance history because previous tests are saved and charted for you on easy to read graphs. Pretty spiffy. Pingdom’s motto is, “No one like a slow website.” Definitely a great tool to consider using for your load tests. Over 700,000 users are already taking advantage of what Pingdom has to offer.
LoadImpact.com offers performance testing for DevOps. Both automated and on-demand testing are available. Websites, web apps, API or mobile apps can be tested with up to 1.2 million concurrent users.
Our favorite feature of Load Impact is the clear and easy to use dashboard. Results take only a few minutes and metrics are charted in a color-coded graph.
Blitz.io bills their services as a Performance Management tool system. Focused on helping application and website developers test the performance and manage development cycles, their end goal is to assist users throughout staging, operations and production. Blitz is a cloud-based load testing platform and can be used for continuous monitoring, remediation and performance testing.
API clients Blitz supports:
SmartBear offers load testing and API load testing. LoadUI NG Pro will run API load tests against single web service endpoints or base them off functional already existing API tests. You can test the speed of changes you have made to your API and the scalability in few minutes.
Smart Bear stresses end-user behavior prediction in all of their load testing scenarios. They incorporate end-user psychology, so that insights found give developers more time to build better code instead of testing blindly.
This free tool is a Java-based framework for load testing which can be used with a BSD-style open source license. Monitoring in real time, The Grinder features a console for use in developing tests, editing or as a basic interactive development environment.
The Grinder uses headless load generators, called agents, and these agents can handle many workers to create the load. The Grinder supports multiple protocols and has flexible parameterization, like the use of external data sources or creating test data as you go.
SOASTA CloudTest is a cloud-based performance testing tool. Developers use the cloud platform as their own virtual testing environment. They have the ability to increase the capacity of users on their website and apply stress and heavy loads.
Pricing is dependent upon the number of load injector machines per hour, although the free version will provide developers with up to 100 concurrent users. Billed as “transparent and efficient,” try Cloud Test’s demo for an idea if this is the best load testing platform for your website.
Websites, web apps or any other project you may be load testing can be performed with the Test Anywhere platform. This automated testing tool will search out bottlenecks and rectify them before your end-users ever touch your site. A built-in editor allows users to edit and change the load testing criteria based on their needs.
Based on a 5 step testing system, (SMART test recorder, Image recognition, advanced web recorder, object recorder and editor) currently over 25, 000 users find Test Anywhere to be a reliable way to load test. This link provides the instructions for download.
If you are a fan of open source performance tools, you want to take a look at The Gatling Project. This basic GUI testing platform does have its limitations as only being a test recorder, but users can develop tests in simple domain-specific language (DSL). Some other features: Gatling is Scala-based, allows for flexibility with validation and assertion systems, and offers comprehensive load reports.
Can Your Project Handle It?
Load testing is a non-negotiable part of launching a finished website. It is the only way of knowing your site can handle the traffic and user behavior once it has gone live.
Luckily, there are many options available to developers to perform the testing, and we’ve given you 8 options to consider when preparing this final chapter of your testing regimen. We hope this has made it easier to find what’s out there and made choosing the best platform for your site less of a headache.