Testing software applications before launching them officially to the end-user is an absolute necessity for the usability and functionality of the app. Its acceptability depends on these tests to be polished enough for the market. Performance software testing is a process by which the speed, stability, scalability, and reliability of an application can be tested. It is advisable to get these tests done so that the functioning capacity of an application under different kinds of workloads can be understood. The primary purpose of performance testing is to eliminate hurdles and bottlenecks in the smooth functioning of the software.
Advantages of Performance Testing
At the outset, it deals with performance bottlenecks, but on a closer look, mobile app performance testing is done to arm stakeholders with essential information about the application. It also tells the developers about the things that need further improvement. To further discuss the many advantages of performance software testing, the following points can be mentioned.
- These tests can determine whether or not the software meets all requirements concerning speed, scalability, and speed or not. In the absence of such information and resultant polish issues like inconsistencies and poor usability can crop up when several users run the application simultaneously.
- Applications critical for life-saving missions on a national or international scale need to be free of inconsistencies and efficiency issues, especially when they are running for a longer time.
- They can help ensure that the app’s response time under load is within an appropriately acceptable range when connectivity of their network is low.
- These tests help check (and fix, if necessary) the total number of users that the software application can handle until it crashes.
Types of Performance Testing
There are many different types of performance software tests. We will discuss the six types here:
Load testing tests whether the application can perform under the expected user workloads. The idea here is to deal with any roadblocks before the software is launched for the end-user.
Volume testing tests how the software behaves when its database is populated with many data units. Here, the application’s merit under varying database volumes is put to the test.
Scalability testing determines how well an application can “scale up” to support sudden increases in user workloads.
Spike testing lets you know how the application will react to sudden and large spikes in the user-generated load.
Stress testing has the application under test under extreme workloads so that its capacity to handle high trafficked data processing can be checked.
Performance Testing Tools
Using tools, developers can make sure that the response time for their application is not more than 4 seconds while it supports a total of a thousand users simultaneously. Quite a large number of performance testing tools are available for use. A compilation of performance tools must include the following:
LoadNinja is a cloud-based load testing tool that empowers teams to instantly record and playback load tests. These tests are entirely changing the way load tests are envisioned. Developers can reduce load testing time by almost 60% and increase test coverage using these tests.
Jmeter is one of the more popular performance testing tools. It is generally used to carry out load testing for web and application servers.
Wireshark is an open-source packet analyzing tool, Wireshark allows testers to capture data from local networks and save it for offline analyses later. This is primarily used to troubleshoot software and communication protocols. Wireshark can capture data from a live web (Bluetooth, wireless, Ethernet, Token Ring, Frame Relay). It can read live data from various network types. It can further browse captured data using terminal or GUI and edit converted files using command line switches. Here the HTTP traffic can be observed to seek out and fix configuration issues by working at the level of network-level instead of a proxy.
HP LoadRunner is by far one of the leading tools used for the performance testing of mobile apps. It can simulate multiple live human users and place applications under real-life workload situations to have a realistic representation of their behavior under anticipated loads.
Tcpdump is a network analyzer test. It lets testers run a command-line interface to display TCP/IP over computer systems. The captured packets can be saved in pcap format for future reference. The packet analyzer helps track and analyze the network traffic, which will help resolve later issues related to the network.
Mitmproxy is another open-source, interactive HTTPS proxy that allows HTTP and HTTP communication. mitmproxy can intercept HTTPS and HTTP requests, save HTTP conversations for future references, replay the HTTP conversations from the client side. It can forward traffic to browsers with reverse proxy mode and make changes to the HTTP traffic using Python.
The Performance Testing Process
Performance software testing helps ascertain if an application meets all the requirements for it to be launched officially. Performance testing tools are also used to compare two different software systems and identify those parts of your system that present performance problems.
The usual process of getting performance testing done consists of a few steps-
- Identifying the testing environment means knowing the physical test environment and the available tools. The details of the software, the hardware, and network configurations beforehand help make the tests more efficient.
- The performance identifying criteria helps gather knowledge of the constraints concerning resource allocation; response time can be collected during this step. Testers should set performance criteria. In this stage, finding a similar application and comparing it could be helpful.
- Planning and designing the performance tests help determine how the usage may vary between different users and identify critical scenarios for a wide range of possible use cases.
- Configuring the test environment and arranging the tools and other resources come next before executing the actual test.
- Next, the test is implemented according to the test design.
- Running and monitoring the test comes next.
- Consolidating and analyzing the test results comes next. Post this, fine-tuning is done, and retests are administered to check if there have been improvements or not.
For most software, significant problems in their functionality are related to response time, speed, loading time, and scalability. If an application runs too slowly and takes too much time to respond, likely, the users won’t take a liking to it. Especially when it comes to mobile apps, performance becomes essential with the ever-decreasing attention span and it gets hard to satisfy user appetites. Other issues causing troubles with newly developed apps are bottlenecks, which are coding errors that are caused due to faulty sections of code. These issues can be fixed using mobile app performance testing using specialized tools before the app goes live. Performance software testing takes care of customer satisfaction and protects against product failure.