Geoffgr’s blogs are moving to a new site

All, I am moving my blog posts to a new site and will do all future blogging there. I am leaving copies of my current posts here, but I will no longer be maintaining them or posting new ones here. If you wish to view new posts or continue to follow me, please change your…

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Which comes first, the Process or the Tool?

Prologue I was just going through my email and came across a question on one of our discussion aliases that asked if it was possible to deliver an ALM assessment for a customer without worrying about the tool set they currently use. The customer wanted to have the assessment focus on their process. The person…

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How Does the User Pacing model differ from the Number of Tests Started model

In my post on User Load Profiles, I talked about choosing one of two different load models, based on a couple of the options in Visual Studio. However, I have still received a lot of requests to clarify these two models and to show how I can apply one of the models to the testing…

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Test And Attack – The Art of Testing WITH…

My old team coined a phrase that they use to describe their Performance engagements called “Test and Attack.” It is meant to conjure up a picture that can represent exactly what happens during the execution phase of a performance tuning and optimization engagement. So what does happen? Test With You, Not For You We refer…

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Should I Setup My Rig Outside of My Environment’s DMZ?

My old team would get this question all of the time when we were scoping potential customer engagements. The customer wanted to make sure we could simulate the “Internet” for their testing. We have hardware WAN simulators in our labs, so we could easily do this. However, when we were asked to include them in…

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[FIXED] Importing and Exporting Perfmon Counters [download]

(NOTE: A bug was reported about errors (missing stored procedures) when trying to add the SQL file to the DB.I have fixed that bug and moved the downloads to CodePlex. Please use this link to get the tool: https://perfmonimportexport.codeplex.com/ ) I am posting this utility to help people who need to import or export perfmon…

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LTP – Real World Example: Calculating Work Load From Historical Data

Recently, I saw a question on an internal alias that spawned a very useful dialog I wish to share below. This example shows how I approach calculating the work load and load pattern when using a mix of historical data and the need to project future data. Below is the relevant part of the email…

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Code Snippets, Templates and Perfmon Countersets [download]

I am sharing a set of tools I use during many of my engagements and projects. These tools have been written by myself and my ITSM teammates over the past several years.  The zip file includes the following (each item has a Word document explaining how to install and use): C# Project and Item Templates…

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OFF TOPIC: Introducing the Premier Developer Blog Site

I am adding this post to showcase the work of my teammates here at Microsoft. The below information is from the official announcement. I am very honored to be highlighted in their initial rollout. Please be sure to link to this new site, as I am sure it will be teeming with great information over…

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Off Topic – Using Outlook to Manage Tasks

I struggle a lot with trying to manage my daily chores and tasks, especially since I suffer from ADHD (clinically diagnosed). I recently asked my teammates how they managed their list of tasks and action items and ToDo lists, and I was surprised to hear that many of them are also looking for a simple…

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[UPDATED] Adding Timers to Coded UI tests running in Load Tests

  I have uploaded a sample App and Coded UI test project for the app with the below code in it. This sample also shows a couple of examples of how to wait for events and how to randomly pick values from screen items. Enjoy and please send feedback. By default, Visual Studio does not…

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(UPDATED) How can I create thousands of clients to execute an End To End load test?

<After initially posting this article, I got some feedback from a customer who said that his company’s apps aren’t using web protocols. Their apps use RDP. I realized that I was making an assumption, and I can’t afford to do that in my job, so I am updating the article to cover "all" protocols> With…

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"Extrapolation, Educated Guesses and Dart Boards, Oh My"

Here is another common question in the testing world: “What is the best way to take the results from our tests with a small load and estimate how the system will behave under a full load?” There are many different reasons for asking this question, not the least of which is because testers often do…

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To “Think” or “Not to Think”

This is one of my favorite topics to debate with people, and it also seems to be one that stirs up the most passion amongst testers who have an opinion. However, as with so much information in testing strategies, there is NOT ONE CORRECT ANSWER. What I hear all of the time… “Driving load without…

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Off Topic – Microsoft Surface Pro II review

    I have to digress from my normal load test posts for a minute to talk about my new computer. I have been kicking around the idea of getting a tablet or a Surface or a slate of some type for a while, but I have held off because of my requirements for a machine….

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All About Caching and How Visual Studio Simulates Browser Caches

Simulation of Browser Caching during load tests In a VS load test that contains Web tests, the load test attempts to simulate the caching behavior of the browser.  Here are some notes on how that is done: There is a property named on each request in a Web test named “Cache Control” in the Web…

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How to Export Perfmon Counter Values from the Visual Studio Load Test Results Database

How Are Perfmon Results Stored When Visual Studio collects perfmon data during a load test, it stores the data in the SQL database using four tables that allow it to normalize the data into a relational hierarchy. The four tables are: Dbo.LoadTestPerformanceCounterCategory – holds the list of machine names and counter category names (such as…

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How many vUsers can my machine run?

I just love this question. It has such a simple answer…. Right? (uh, yeah. Sure). You can start off with this post from the product group (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff937706.aspx) , which is as good a starting place as any, but as a teammate just said “That’s sort of a ‘Your Mileage May Vary’ answer. Right?” Yep, it is….

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Explanation of V.S. Load Test warm-up, load patterns, and cool-down, and how this affects the reported results

These graphs show what test iterations are stored and reported in the results of a Visual Studio load test based on the load pattern and warmup used. It is important to note the following things when considering the results: If the test’s active run settings is set to store “All Individual Details” then all iterations…

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Explanation of “Off-Box Inclusive Testing” and how it impacts results and troubleshooting

Explanation of “Off-Box Inclusive testing” and how it impacts troubleshooting An “Off-Box” request is any request that is made by a client to a machine that is not part of the core environment. As an example, if a user opens Internet Explorer and goes to the main Contoso.com website, Internet Explorer will go to the…

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Random Data Generator

This tool is used to create realistic random data for use in performing load testing. It includes a PowerPoint that discusses the importance of good data and includes information about how the tool generates data you can use. RandomDataGenerator.zip

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