S13-202: Performance Testing Stumbles – Missteps on the Path to Production

Track: Performance Testing

This session will present true life examples of pre-production performance testing efforts that went awry and identify the missteps that were responsible for the failure to identify and correct the problems that were experienced in production. The presentation will cover best practices for load testing, bottleneck analysis, modeling and simulation with an emphasis on teamwork, test fidelity, data interpretation and presentation of results.

Session Takeaways:

  • Teamwork – Performance testing is more effective as a partnership between the business unit and IT, and within IT between applications, infrastructure, and operations.
  • When the test outcome is an IT-led go/no-go decision, one or more stakeholders will probably stack the deck in their favor.
  • Fidelity to Production – How closely do the tests match real user behavior? Should the test environment always match the production environment?
  • Fidelity to the Performance Target – Is there a performance target? Is the target realistic?
  • Are the tests designed to measure and validate the desired metric – Is the target a throughput measurement a response time metric, or a combination of both?
  • Interpretation and Presentation of Test Results – The importance of understanding the data in context of the test and presenting it so others can understand and take the appropriate corrective action.

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Session Speaker:

Kerry FieldKerry Field – APM Specialist, CSS Management Team, US Bank
Mr. Field has worked in Information Technology for 40 years in a wide range of disciplines including applications development, product and service support, security, systems and network management, functional QA, capacity planning, and application performance. For the past 12 years Kerry has specialized in application performance management, including pre-deployment testing and tuning, enterprise systems monitoring, production troubleshooting and root cause analysis. He has an ITIL Foundations Certificate and was a Six Sigma Green Belt. He also served on the customer advisory boards for Keynote, Wily Technology, and APDEX.