Thursday, November 6, 2014

Hybrid Application Performance Testing - Apica

Introduction and Primary Challenges

Today, IT finds itself at the crossroad of major game-changing technology shifts: the explosive rise of cloud and mobile computing.
The promise of cloud scalability, flexibility and agility is driving enterprises to move applications out of the office and into the cloud. Simultaneously, mobile computing and social media are transforming and increasing interactions between companies and their customers/end users. Organizations are developing new mobile and social media applications that reach out to engage users as digital extensions of their sales, marketing and customer service efforts. These modern, hybrid applications must be flexible enough to perform reliably across a variety of devices and computing environments, and scalable enough to maintain peak performance under heavy loads.
As IT staff move applications to the cloud and mobile, many discover that capacity testing is not the same as it would be testing applications in traditional environments. Applications cannot always scale up, even when running on scalable cloud infrastructures. This becomes painfully clear when applications which performed adequately in traditional environments “break” when subjected to higher loads and dynamic scalability in the cloud.
Hybrid application performance testing must look seamlessly at end-to-end application performance as it travels across diverse environments, and performance must be optimized for each environment along the application delivery chain. This requires advanced, proactive planning and QA testing throughout the development lifecycle. Just as suspension bridge engineers painstakingly test and build strength and resiliency into bridge designs to handle the weight loads of actual use, modern application developers must also meticulously test and build performance-ready hybrid applications.

The unique nature of modern, hybrid applications running across diverse environments demands a different approach for testing performance.
This paper examines some of the most important considerations for modern application performance testing and planning.

A Multi-Faceted Performance Testing Approach

Performance testing must use a multi-faceted approach that goes beyond solely measuring response time. This approach is outlined in the sections below.

Understanding Application Characteristics:

The first step to hybrid application performance testing is understanding the performance characteristics of your application.
Knowing how an application performs under various load levels and in each environment (cloud, mobile, traditional data center, etc.) enables managing a hybrid application’s performance proactively, in support of business goals.

The Load Curve

A load curve is the most important measurement of a load test. Understanding how your application performs along the load curve enables operational IT staff to know when increased resources are required to prevent unacceptable performance degradation and poor end-user experiences.
The load curve diagram (graph at the top left) shows application response times versus increasing loads. If throughput doubles at the same rate as the number of users doubles, response times will stay constant. Performance testing helps identify when infrastructure capacity limits begin impacting performance, enabling IT operational staff to proactively avert issues.

To read the full paper, click on this link: