List of performance testing tools for software developers

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 19 September 2022

Published 4 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Performance testing is a type of software testing that professionals use to see how an application performs under load, which means when it's operating at maximum processing power. This enables software developers to understand how fast, responsive and stable an application is when under a given workload. Understanding how to do performance testing can help to ensure your application doesn't fail when people use it and can improve your testing procedures at work. In this article, we define performance testing and explore an extensive list of performance testing tools you can use to improve your applications.

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What is performance testing?

Performance testing is a key part of the quality assurance process for software developers, as they use it to determine how stable, fast, responsive and scalable apps are when developers place them under the pressure of a load. Performance testing seeks to evaluate application output, data transfer velocity, processing speeds, network bandwidth usage, memory utilisation, command response times and workload efficiency. These tests determine whether applications meet performance requirements, such as a specific amount of users at one time. Here are some other reasons for running performance tests:

  • to measure app stability under high volumes of traffic

  • to compare two systems to see which performs better

  • to identify computing bottlenecks within apps

  • to determine the scalability of applications

  • to regularly ensure web applications and software are working correctly

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Performance testing tools

Here is a list of popular performance testing tools that professionals use:

LoadNinja

This is a popular tool because it enables users to reduce testing time by 50%, and it also allows you to build scriptless load tests. LoadNinja also allows you to replace load emulators with actual browsers and produce actionable metrics. You can use this tool to debug in real-time, quickly identify performance issues and track client-side interactions, and it can also boost your test coverage without sacrificing quality. Another benefit of this tool is that it allows you to eliminate the repetitive tasks involved in script translation, script rubbing and dynamic correlation. Here's a summary of LoadNinja's features:

  • executes real browser load tests

  • creates and plays back scriptless load tests

  • debugs tests in real-time

  • is hosted on a cloud

  • uses browser-based metrics and analytics

  • manages virtual user activity in real-time

Here are the protocols that LoadNinja supports:

  • HTTPS

  • Java-based protocol

  • HTTP

  • SAP GUI Web

  • WebSocket

  • Oracle Forms

  • Google Web Toolkit

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WebLoad

This load testing tool supports large-scale testing requirements for complicated systems and can generate realistic and reliable load scenarios. WebLoad comes with built-in support for a wide range of technologies and integrates with various other tools to allow easier monitoring. Its intelligent analytics also enable deeply revealing performance insights. Commercial-scale services use WebLoad because it can test applications under heavy user loads. Here are some of the main benefits of WebLoad:

  • supports major web technologies

  • automatically detects bottlenecks

  • produces flexible test environments

  • uses native JavaScript scripting

These are the protocols that WebLoad supports:

  • HTTP

  • HTTPS

  • Enterprise applications

  • XML

  • Server technologies

  • Network technologies

LoadView

LoadView is a fully managed, on-demand load and stress testing tool that's highly popular because of its unique ability to enable testing in real browsers. This creates a more realistic simulation of users interacting with your app or website and produces more insightful and accurate data. Because it's entirely cloud-based, you can deploy the tool rapidly. Here are some of the key features of LoadView:

  • performs cloud-based testing in real browsers

  • builds test scripts without the need for coding

  • identifies bottlenecks and supports scaling

  • has shareable performance metrics and reports

  • has test compatibility with various browsers and devices

Here is a list of supported protocols:

  • Silverlight

  • Java

  • Flash

  • HTML5

  • Ruby

  • PHP

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Rational Performance Tester

IBM's Rational Performance Tester allows you to create and run performance tests and offers valuable analytics. This automated performance testing tool lets you verify the stability and scalability of web applications by producing a demonstration of the transaction process between the app and its users. The analysis capabilities of the tool make it simple to detect and correct leakage in applications and servers. Here are some of the main features of the tool:

  • enables scriptless testing

  • supports event-based and schedule testing

  • offers real-time reporting

  • enables you to instantly identify performance issues

  • runs with large-scale tests with significant traffic

  • supports automated test data variation

Here are the protocols Rational Performance Tester supports:

  • HTTP

  • SAP (GUI)

  • Citrix

  • Socket

  • Service (SOA)

  • Websphere

  • Weblogic

  • Socket Recording

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Apache Jmeter

This is an open-source performance testing tool that's useful for performance and load testing. You can use this tool to measure the performance of various services, including networks and servers. Most commonly, professionals use Jmeter to test the performance of web-based applications. Jmeter is a Java platform that you can integrate with your test plan and use to create a function test plan in addition to a load test plan. Here are some of the key features of Apache Jmeter:

  • supports all Java-based apps and is highly portable

  • supports several load injectors that you can control with one controller

  • doesn't rely on advanced infrastructure for load testing

  • requires less scripting efforts in relation to other tools

  • simple graphs and charts to display key load-related stats and resource usage monitors

These are protocols that Jmeter supports:

  • HTTPS

  • HTTP

  • SOAP

  • XML

  • FTP

  • Java-based protocols

SmartMeter.io

This tool aims to overcome the limitations of Jmeter. Its recorder features allow you to easily create a scriptless test environment and edit the test in advanced ways which is something that Jmeter doesn't enable. The reporting tools are also advanced, and you can use functions such as automatic test criteria assessment, test runs trend and comparison analysis. Here are some of the main features of Smartmeter.io:

  • creates scriptless test scenarios

  • has a sophisticated response body extractor

  • runs GUI tests and reports in real-time

  • enables CI/CD integration

Here are the protocols this tool supports:

  • HTTP

  • FTP

  • SOAP

  • JMS

  • LDAP

  • JDBC

Gatling

This is another open-source testing tool that came out relatively recently that allows you to run load simulations of concurrent users against the system through multiple protocols. This tool is particularly useful for identifying and optimising bottlenecks. Because it works on Java, it's compatible with all operating systems. You can use Gatling to record tests in Scala and then execute them, after which the tool generates an in-depth report of the test in the form of graphs. Here are some of the main features of Gatling:

  • has its own DLS and uses Scala scripting language

  • supports all browsers and operating systems

  • supports execution of tests in multiple test clouds

  • can scale through BlazeMeter, Taurus and Flood.io

It's compatible with the following protocols:

  • HTTP

  • HTTPS

  • JDBC

  • JMS

Silk Performer

This is a stress and load testing tool that companies use on an enterprise scale. Silk Performer can test application environments that have hundreds of thousands of users at a single time. Quality assurance professionals can launch any type of peak load performance test, even if apps have complex infrastructure, from over 50 locations globally. Here's a list of the key benefits of this tool:

  • requires few hardware resources

  • enables modifiable virtual user simulations

  • has customer-friendly licensing

  • supports six models of workloads

  • supports integrated server monitoring

Here's a list of some compatible protocols:

  • HTTP/HTML

  • HTTPS/HTML

  • HTTP/HTTPS

  • FTP

  • TCP/IP

  • Email (SMTP/POP)

  • Flash

  • XML/SOAP

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Types of performance tests

Here are some of the different kinds of performance tests that quality assurance professionals conduct:

  • Load testing: This type of testing helps with the identification of bottlenecks, in addition to testing the workload and response time in normal conditions.

  • Spike testing: In this type of testing, QAs rapidly change workloads and monitor how apps respond.

  • Stress testing: These tests help to identify the maximum load point at which the app crashes by applying heavy workloads.

  • Endurance testing: This involves testing expected workloads on applications for extended periods of time to see how they perform.

  • Scalability testing: Professionals conduct this type of testing by progressively increasing workloads to see how efficiently apps scale.

  • Volume testing: These tests focus on the capabilities and efficiency of data processors by feeding the databases of applications with large volumes of data from the performance testing services.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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