The Need for Ubiquitous Application Testing

Michael Vizard

With more capacity than ever availablbe in the cloud, you might think that software developers would be spending more time testing their applications before loading them into production environments.

But it turns out that giving them access to IT infrastructure is only half the battle; the other half is getting them the tools they need to test those applications as soon as possible. To address this issue, SOASTA today rolled out CloudTest Lite, a free, lightweight version of the application testing environment in the cloud that application developers can download themselves and run locally.

According to SOASTA CEO Tom Lounibos, the basic idea is to allow developers to begin testing their applications as early as possible in the application development cycle so they can identify potential performance and quality issues associated with any given module. Then, once the application is complete, they can load the entire application onto the SOASTA cloud for final testing, which would then make application testing a continuous process.


Lounibos notes that one of the dirty little secrets of application testing these days is that most mobile and Web applications were only tested against five concurrent users, either because of a lack of access to testing tools and equipment or out of a desire to cut corners. That issue, says Lounibos, explains why we see so much poor-quality software being deployed these days on, for example, mobile computing devices.

The good news, he notes, is that as companies become more conscious of the fact that their corporate brands and revenue streams are directly tied to the quality of their software, they are starting to take testing seriously. In fact, Lounibos says that application testing has gone from being the bastard child of development to the crown prince of IT.

Lounibos says there really is no excuse these days for the deployment of poor-quality software. And yet, despite that, we encounter poor-quality software almost every day. The hope is that market forces will soon lead to more stringent testing certification processes that will attest to the quality of any given piece of software. Ideally, software quality should one day soon become much less of an issue thanks to market forces. Hopefully, that'll happen before somebody in government decides what is really needed is more regulatory oversight, especially over mobile applications that depend on regulated wireless spectrum for delivery.

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Jul 27, 2011 2:34 PM Vijayanathan Naganathan Vijayanathan Naganathan  says:

Great points Michael. Getting additional capacity and tools on cloud will aid the development teams validate application behavior easily. Application performance is a critical factor that has a direct impact on business revenues. Hence, best way for application to get certified and go live would be to validate for these non-functional requirements using closer to real life concurrent users.

Key factors to keep in mind while choosing performance testing tools for the cloud would be:

1) Identifying the right tool that supports the underlying technology on which the application under test was built.

2) Identifying a tool that can be leveraged across the lifecycle of the business application -development through testing through go live.

3) Identifying a tool that can potentially inject significant amount of concurrent user load in line with the organization's business application usage.

These factors would help organizations streamlining their end to end testing of the application with the optimal mix of test toolsets.

Facilitating application testing early in life cycle and making it a on-going process throughout the lifecycle is a very sound and business sensible move so that all potential issues can be uncovered at its stage of inception itself.

However, I would say that beyond the availability of test environments and tools to aid in application testing, prime aspects that would help in improving the quality of applications is having the rightly skilled team to conduct tests, have the right strategy to validate the application - know precisely what to test, how to test and how much to test.

To read more about the Infosys Testing blogs click here http://www.infosysblogs.com/testing-services/

Nov 24, 2011 8:43 PM Neil Kirchoff Neil Kirchoff  says:

Why would they do that? Why would they test more efficiently their software? I recently downloaded a program from a cloud ( I won't give names ) and after I installed some errors appeared! After I ran a dll search I managed to figure out what the problem was and mailed it to them. After 2 days they managed to fix the bug and I could install my program.

Dec 7, 2011 9:58 AM Neil Kirchoff Neil Kirchoff  says:

I think the software companies are doing their best. I am pretty sure that it is not their wish to release a "bugged" software. I have heard a lot of people saying that the companies that produce the antivirus software are paying hackers off but that is not true. There are a million examples but if you have at least an IQ of 80 you won't need my explanations.


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