Performance Testing experience using Ant and Jmeter - Part 1

Jmeter is a well known open source performance/load testing tool and to be fair it does a lot of stuff really well. if you wants to do some quick performance testing without a whole lots of infrastructure around it then it is great.

I started out my task with jmeter with some objectives:

<li> A tool that i could integrate into a CI tool such as teamcity</li>
<li> Meaningful graphs that could be easily interpreted by any one in the team</li>
<li> Able to integrate the graphs into teamcity</li>	
<li> Able to monitor the performance of the website under test.</li>

After doing an initial round of tests, i didnt like the graphs which were being produced by jmeter and i search for plug-ins to enable me plot better graphs. I came across jmeter-plugins which is an awesome collection of jmeter plugins. Instructions to install can be found on this page.

Whilst, there are lots of usefuil graphs bundled within this plugin, i found the following graphs to be most useful

<li><a href="" target="_blank">Active Thread Over Time</a></li>

<li><a href="" target="_blank">Response Times Over Time</a></li>

<li><a href="" target="_blank">Response Times versus Thread.</a></li>

I could easily put “Active Thread Over Time” and “Response Times Over Time” to get a complete picture of my performance results solely based on response times. And that was good enough for me.

Also jmeter only allow you to specify a ramp up period and the maximum number of thread you want to execute your tests with. I desperately wanted to be able to specify a ramp down time as well and fortunately, the Ultimate Thread Group which ships with the jmeter-plugins solves that problem for me as well.

Having jmeter-plugins installed along side with my installation of jmeter helped to get the best out of jmeter, and i was able to specify my load more realistically as well as having clear and better graphs.

See below.

In the next blog post i would discuss how i have integrated jmeter with ant, enabling me to run jmeter in command line

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