Sauce Labs announced it is now moving beyond functional testing, adding a front-end testing tool it has dubbed Sauce Performance to make it easier to accelerate testing within the context of a DevOps process.
Lubos Parobek, vice president of products for Sauce Labs, said the goal is to enable developers or testers to begin testing both how well application functions work and perform much earlier in the DevOps process using the same testing tool.
Parobek said that as organizations embrace modern application development architectures based on microservices, it’s become crucial to test the capabilities of any module within an application because the number of interdependencies between modules continues to increase. That approach accelerates the rate at which applications can be developed. However, any flaw that impacts how the application works or performs can have a debilitating impact on any number of microservices that make up the application, he noted.
Sauce Performance makes use of debugging and performance trace logs to identify the root cause of an issue in addition to capturing metrics such as Time to First Meaningful Paint, Time to First Interactive, Page Weight and Speed Index. Sauce Performance also employs algorithms to automatically establish a baseline that can be used for regression testing.
Parobek said Sauce Performance serves to streamline testing processes as well. Most existing front-end performance testing solutions require integration with a load/stress testing tool or a separate application performance monitoring (APM) tool. However, Sauce Performance allows developers to use their existing Selenium test scripts to capture both functional and performance test data.
In addition, Sauce Performance has been designed to integrate with multiple continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) platforms to make it possible to feed test results directly back to developers, which can then decide to prioritize issues that need to be addressed.
Sauce Performance is available as part of the Sauce Labs Continuous Testing Cloud.
Parobek said organizations want to be able to make it easier for developers to test their own code as part of their DevOps best practices. That doesn’t eliminate the need for dedicated testers for evaluating functions, but potential performance issues today are being addressed often long before applications are deployed in a production environment.
One of the reasons applications are not as thoroughly tested as they might be is that many organizations require developers to learn how to use tools that have different user interfaces and then switch between testing tools. The result is a complex testing process that makes it more tempting to short-shrift elements of the testing process as application delivery deadlines loom.
More challenging still, many organizations still don’t continuously test applications after they are deployed to ensure new functionality does not adversely impact the user experience.
For as long as applications have been built, tension has existed between the developers who create applications and the people who test them. That debate may never be resolved, but everyone agrees in this age of DevOps that it’s better to test early and often.