Chris Baeckstrom of RedLine13 has a conversation with RedLine13 Partner ThinkLogic CEO Chris Adams. To hear the full conversation with the Chris’s, click here.
ThinkLogic has done custom software development for 20 years but has found over the last few years that they’ve been tasked with building some high volume applications, some capable of supporting up to a million simultaneous users. The first challenge has been how they validate the stability of the application and the 2nd challenge has been how they do it economically.
Challenges of High Volume Load Testing
RedLine13 Chris asked ThinkLogic Chris if there were any unique or surprising challenges. He responded:
Some of our larger tests would trigger our cloud providers automated DDoS countermeasures. To resolve would often require conversations with the infrastructure providers and require exceptions to continue. With these larger tests we found it very easy to overwhelm our cloud infrastructure without ever hitting our scaling thresholds. For example RAM and CPU could be fine but you can blow through your allowable HTTP connections and bring everything to a standstill. So throughout the development and testing life cycle you will have to perform cost benefit analyses to determine whether it is better to overcome each hurdle with software optimizations or by simply adding additional infrastructure.
Chris Adams shared lessons learned:
- Don’t start with 1 million vUsers – start small and work your way up.
- Spend time researching what a typical user will do within your system and build your test accordingly.
- Structure your test so it’s modular so you can isolate components of your system and test them individually before you try and mimic a real world experience.
- Take good notes and document everything.
- Start with a hypothesis estimating your required computing power. When you have enough data, build a model and refine it as you go. At some point you should be able to prove X amount of infrastructure will support Y number of users.
- Enjoy the process, I know I certainly do. It should be a learning experience for everyone involved.
Listen to the conversation to hear more from RedLine13 Partner ThinkLogic, such as the environment and the results.
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