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Using the Cloud to Achieve Software Testing Excellence

Posted by Indusa Admin on July 23, 2015 4:33 am

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Cloud computing has changed the way IT services are delivered and consumed. The ability of small, medium, and large enterprises to outsource IT infrastructure to cloud providers helps reduce costs and provides better management for increasingly complex infrastructures across distributed environments.  The cloud provides enterprises the ability to mutually distribute and use resources from anywhere, at any time. According to a report by Gartner, worldwide cloud IaaS spending is set to grow 32.8% in 2015, indicating massive adoption of cloud computing in the coming years.

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Apart from offering services like IaaS, PaaS and SaaS, cloud providers today are also offering cloud-based testing services to users to efficiently and quickly test their applications in the cloud. Just as cloud based services can be made available on demand, cloud testing can also be offered to customers “as-a-service” on a pay-per-use model, enabling customers to pay only for resources they use. With the emergence of cloud technology, more and more organizations are embracing cloud services to run their operations; IDC predicts that cloud IT infrastructure spending will reach $54.6 by 2019. Cloud providers are developing effective cloud testing strategies to ensure efficient testing of diverse applications.

The Need for Cloud-Based Testing

On-premises testing necessitates the existence of dedicated infrastructure and tools to examine the availability, security and performance of applications. With business applications snowballing in quantity and complexity, exclusive infrastructure for testing purposes is costly and time consuming. Organizations need to develop and maintain several in-house testing environments that emulate real-time situations and provide them with an insight into the quality of applications.

On the other hand, cloud-based testing solutions enable enterprises to test and evaluate applications by leveraging the benefits of cloud technologies. Cloud-based testing eliminates the need for upfront capital expenditures and in-house testing facilities, facilitating lower costs, higher flexibility, and greater levels of efficiency. Additionally, since testing is a periodic activity requiring new environments to be set up for each testing scenario, test labs often are idle for long periods of time, consuming power and space. This is where cloud-based testing benefits organizations by providing testing environments based on their requirements.

Relevance of Different Types of Testing on the Cloud

Software testing is an essential and significant part of the software development process, helping organizations to ensure that their application is ready to go live. Testing in the cloud ensures that functional and non-functional requirements are met.  Read on for an in-depth analysis of the various types of cloud testing and the features they each offer:

Functional Testing

Functional testing is carried out to check that business requirements are being met and the services the user is paying for are provided. Functional tests include:

  • Browser performance testing

    This type of testing is carried out to verify an application’s support for various browser types like Internet Explorer, Chrome, and Firefox. Many tools enable automated website testing from the cloud.

  • Acceptance testing

    This cloud-based solution requires validation by end users to check the fitness-for-use of the system.

  • System verification testing

    This confirms that various modules are functioning correctly with one another, as required per business logic.

  • Interoperability and compatibility testing

    Every application must have the flexibility to work without any issues on different platforms (including several operating systems, network environments, hardware). The application must also work seamlessly when moving from one cloud infrastructure to another.

Non-functional testing

Non-functional tests primarily focus on testing web applications to ensure they are functioning, per the stated requirements. Listed below are some of the types of non-functional tests:

  • Performance testing

    Performance testing is done to make sure applications are performing optimally with increases/decreases in load and stress. You will have the insight about how the application behaves when handling increased demand and when there is a reduction in load, workload balancing will withdraw resources.

  • Security testing

    With security testing, testers can install multiple security testing tools simultaneously to evaluate and test the safety of each application. Security testing in the cloud leverages security services to ascertain data protection and data integrity at an affordable cost.

  • Failover testing

    If there are failures such as a network breakdown due to extreme load or system failures, the cloud needs to maintain 100% availability. Failover tests are conducted under anticipated load with component failure during testing timeframes.  For example, in a web environment, failover testing determines the outcome when multiple web servers are being used under peak anticipated load, and one of them accidently dies.

  • Latency testing

    Latency is measured between the action and the corresponding response for any application after implementing it on cloud. The tests can be carried out using  agents, from multiple locations around the globe.

5 Key Benefits of Cloud-Based Testing

The ability to simulate environments on the cloud for testing offers a wide range of benefits for cloud providers. Some of them are listed below:

1. Availability

In standard testing environments where organizations invest in hardware and software infrastructure to fulfil testing requirements, cloud testing easily provides a similar infrastructure with around-the-clock availability. With customer requirements changing rapidly, cloud testing enables replication of customer environment and discovery of defects early in the lifecycle. Cloud-based testing also allows testers to enable testing on a global scale, through partnerships with cloud providers. Customers can also perform load tests establishing multitudes of simultaneous users from multiple continents.

2. Scalability

Cloud-based testing provides organizations a cost-effective means of testing applications with huge scalability options. Cloud providers can easily scale up or scale down testing resources, based on customer requirements. Instead of testing applications against a small portion of users, cloud testers can test applications against the actual number of users, giving them realistic testing scenarios. This is predominantly useful in situations where business requirements vary frequently.

3. Flexibility

While on-premises testing requires a pre-configured test environment with purchased hardware and software, cloud based testing can be performed in the cloud by utilizing tools and infrastructure based on the situation. Moreover, the same test environment can be used for multiple testing scenarios, thus facilitating efficient use of test resources.

4. Low cost

Cloud testing enables cloud providers to achieve economies of scale. While normal testing mandates the need for huge investments in testing infrastructure and tools; often many of the servers go underutilized, leading to inefficient usage. Organizations can save sufficient time and cost as they no longer have to procure and setup infrastructure for testing purposes. Moreover, as cloud-based testing is provided as a service, enterprises only need to pay for the hardware, software, and tools that they actually use. This way cloud providers can commission the required infrastructure, saving huge costs.

5. Customization

With scalable cloud infrastructure for testing, cloud providers can build customized testing scenarios using various permutations and combinations. Testers can simulate customer environments using different OS, browsers, and configurations. They can rapidly define end-to-end tests that extend across different layers and components of cloud-based applications.

Final Thoughts

As more and more enterprises are opting for cloud-based services, there is an impending need for robust testing methods to test cloud based applications. With noteworthy benefits like flexibility and low cost, testing solutions based in the cloud are on the path to becoming the next generation testing mechanism, enabling organizations to ensure superior quality and excellent reliability of their applications.

Still have questions? Indusa is here to help. Learn more about the benefits of cloud testing today.

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Ahesan
About the Author -Ahesanali Vijapura

Ahesanali Vijapura is a highly professional Senior Project Manager (QA Services) at Indusa. He has vast experience in managing manual and automation test teams, onsite as well as offsite. He is an expert when it comes to software testing in various environments, server/client testing management and integration of multidisciplinary software and hardware systems.

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Contributing Writer: Neha Kumar