Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Apica Systems - DevOps: Building Performance-Ready Hybrid Applications

Today, users expect applications to be fresh, fast, and facile. “Fresh” requires more frequent software updates and refreshed content. “Fast” means that applications have to perform well or users move on to other applications/providers that do. And “facile” translates to easy and user-friendly, including minimizing frustration from underperforming or non-functional applications.
These demanding user expectations place a bigger burden on DevOps teams who must ensure that applications are operational and performance-ready when released. As a result, DevOps teams are integrating performance testing into their development processes.[1] Following are two brief case studies of DevOps teams (from Virgin America and Activision), describing how they used performance testing while developing their software.

In order to ensure performance of the application on launch day, Activision engaged with Apica to help them design a custom SDLC platform and additional testing agents for iOS, Android, and web browsers. Apica also helped Activision perform regular load tests and performance reviews on the companion app during development.

The Results:
Regular load testing caught performance issues while the apps were being developed, which saved on troubleshooting time and provided crucial insight into many code-based errors and other bugs.
As a result, application developers were able to correct performance issues during the development cycle, instead of waiting until the test phase or after deploying into production.

Case Study: Virgin America

Virgin America, a travel innovator, needed a new, high performance website to meet (and exceed) customer demand. When designing their new web storefront, Virgin developers wanted to create a faster, smoother, more intuitive, and enjoyable online booking experience.
 Virgin America needed a performance testing solution that could ensure performance lived up to their new and improved look, no matter the load.
Apica worked with Virgin throughout the development cycle to pinpoint performance bottlenecks, stress test the booking purchase flow, and provide proactive capacity planning. After working with Apica, they were able to increase overall site performance by as much as 10 times.

The Final Word

As teams rush new hybrid applications to their customers, performance testing is not the place to cut corners because there is so much at stake. Understanding the performance characteristics of each type of environment are crucial, as well as understanding what happens to the application when it reaches its capacity so outage avoidance measures can be taken preemptively.    

To read the full paper, click on this link: