What is Performance Testing?

Performance testing is defined as Non-Functional Software Testing to ensure how the software application will behave under the particular workload. Performance testing is a type of testing that tests the stability and response time of the application by applying load on it is known as performance Testing. It focuses more on checking the speed, stability, scalability, reliability, and resource usage of a software application under a particular workload. The main goal of Performance Testing is not to find bugs, instead, it focuses more on identifying and eliminating the performance bottlenecks in the software application. It is popularly known as Perf Testing because it is a subset of Performance Engineering.

As Performance Testing is checking the software performance where 

Speed: Determines the response time of the application, i.e whether the application responded quickly or not.

Scalability: ?Determining the maximum user load the software application can handle.

Stability: ?Determines whether the application is stable under the varying loads.

Why do we need Performance Testing?

To begin with, Performance testing is done with the goal of providing the information of their application about speed, stability, and scalability of how their application works to the stakeholders.

Secondly, with performance testing, we can uncover what needs to be improved more before a product goes into the market.

If the software is launched without its Performance Testing then that software is most likely to suffer from the issues such as running slow while several users use it simultaneously, giving inconsistencies across the different operating systems and poor usability.

Moreover, with Performance Testing, we can determine whether the software meets speed, scalability, and stability requirements under the expected workloads.

Applications which are sent to the market with Poor Performance metrics due to non-existent or poor performance testing are likely to gain a bad reputation and fail to meet expected sales goals. Hence, it is essential to perform Performance Testing.

In addition to this, applications like space launch programs or life-saving applications must have performance testing to be done successfully, to ensure that they run for a long period of time without deviations.

We can compare two or more systems identify the one that performs best, and measure the stability under peak traffic events.

How to Do Performance Testing?

The Steps of Performance Testing vary from one organization to another similarly from one application to the next. It depends on what performance indicators the business considers the most important. However, the general goals of performance testing are largely the same across the board so there is a certain workflow most testing plans will follow. Following are the steps which we usually follow when doing performance testing. 

1. First and foremost is to Identify the Test Environment and Tools.

Here we not only identify the production environment, testing environment, and testing tools but also document the hardware, software, infrastructure specifications, and configurations in both test and production environments to ensure coherence.

2. Define Acceptance Performance Criteria. 

This includes goals and constraints for throughput, response time, and resource allocation.It is also necessary to identify project success criteria outside of these goals and constraints. Testers should be empowered to set the performance criteria and goals because often the project specifications will not include wide enough performance benchmarks

3. Plan and Design Tests.

Determine how usage is likely to vary amongst end-users and identify key scenarios to test for all possible use cases. It is necessary to simulate a variety of end-users plan performance test data and outline what matrix will get together.

4. Configure Test Environment and Tools.

Prepare testing environment before execution, also arrange tools and other resources before the execution of performance tests, and assembling the testing tools in readiness is done here.

5. Implement Test Design

Create your performance test according to your test designs. This test design will be created based on the performance requirements of the software

6. Run the Performance Tests.

Here we need to execute the created test cases and monitor the executed test

7. Resolve and Retest.

The test results analysis is done here and we share the finding with the project team.

Types of Performance Testing

The following are the types of performance testing.

  1. Load Testing: In load testing, we check the ability of the application to perform anticipated user load, and its main objective is to identify the performance bottleneck before the software application goes live. Testing the application with a fixed number of users to determine application capacity, how quickly the application is responding.
  2. Stress Testing:  Stress testing involves testing an application under extreme workloads to see how it handles high traffic or data processing. The objective is to identify the breaking point of an application.
  3. Endurance Testing: Endurance Testing is done to make sure the software can handle the expected load over a long period of time.
  4. Spike Testing: Spike testing tests the software reaction to sudden large spikes in the load generated by the users.
  5. Volume Testing: In volume testing a large number of data is populated in a database and the overall software system behavior is monitored. The main objective of it is to check software applications performance under varying database volumes.
  6. Scalability Testing: The objective of scalability testing is to determine the software applications effectiveness in scaling up to support an increase in user load. It helps plan capacity addition to your software system.

Common Performance Problems.

  1. Most of the performance problems revolve around speed, response time, load time, and poor scalability.
  2.  Speed is often one of the most important attributes of the application.
  3.  A slow-running application will lose potential use.
  4. Performance testing is done to make sure that an application runs faster to keep the users attention and interest a few of the most common performance problems are listed below as

1. Long Load time: The longest time initially takes for the application to start, generally it should be kept to be minimum.

2. Poor response time: is a time when a user inputs data into the application, until the application output responds to that input

3. Poor scalability: A software product occurs from poor scalability when it cannot handle the expected number of users or it cannot handle a wide number of users.

4. Bottleneck:  It includes, coding errors, hardware issues, cause a decrease of throughput under certain loads, it is often caused by one faulty section of the code. The key to fixing bottlenecks is to find the section of code causing the issue and try to fix it.

Some common performance bottlenecks are

  1. Cpu Utilization
  2. Memory utilization
  3. Network utilization
  4. Operating systems limitation
  5. Disk usage