What is Performance Testing? Difference Between Performance Testing, Load Testing and Stress Testing – With Examples

Q. What is difference between Performance Testing, Load Testing and Stress Testing?

1) Performance Testing:

=> Click on below link to know more about PT:
What is performance testing?

Performance testing is the testing, which is performed, to ascertain how the components of a system are performing, given a particular situation. Resource usage, scalability and reliability of the product are also validated under this testing. This testing is the subset of performance engineering, which is focused on addressing performance issues in the design and architecture of software product.

Performance Testing Goal:

The primary goal of performance testing includes establishing the benchmark behaviour of the system. There are a number of industry-defined benchmarks, which should be met during performance testing.

Performance testing does not aim to find defects in the application, it address a little more critical task of testing the benchmark and standard set for the application. Accuracy and close monitoring of the performance and results of the test is the primary characteristic of performance testing.

Example:

For instance, you can test the application network performance on Connection Speed vs. Latency chart. Latency is the time difference between the data to reach from source to destination. Thus, a 70kb page would take not more than 15 seconds to load for a worst connection of 28.8kbps modem (latency=1000 milliseconds), while the page of same size would appear within 5 seconds, for the average connection of 256kbps DSL (latency=100 milliseconds). 1.5mbps T1 connection (latency=50 milliseconds) would have the performance benchmark set within 1 second to achieve this target.

For example, the time difference between the generation of request and acknowledgement of response should be in the range of x ms (milliseconds) and y ms, where x and y are standard digits. A successful performance testing should project most of the performance issues, which could be related to database, network, software, hardware etc…

Performance Load and stress testing

2) Load Testing:

Load testing is meant to test the system by constantly and steadily increasing the load on the system till the time it reaches the threshold limit. It is the simplest form of testing which employs the use of automation tools such as LoadRunner or any other good tools, which are available. Load testing is also famous by the names like volume testing and endurance testing.

The sole purpose of load testing is to assign the system the largest job it could possible handle to test the endurance and monitoring the results. An interesting fact is that sometimes the system is fed with empty task to determine the behaviour of system in zero-load situation.

Load Testing Goal:

The goals of load testing are to expose the defects in application related to buffer overflow, memory leaks and mismanagement of memory. Another target of load testing is to determine the upper limit of all the components of application like database, hardware and network etc… so that it could manage the anticipated load in future. The issues that would eventually come out as the result of load testing may include load balancing problems, bandwidth issues, capacity of the existing system etc…

Example:

For example, to check the email functionality of an application, it could be flooded with 1000 users at a time. Now, 1000 users can fire the email transactions (read, send, delete, forward, reply) in many different ways. If we take one transaction per user per hour, then it would be 1000 transactions per hour. By simulating 10 transactions/user, we could load test the email server by occupying it with 10000 transactions/hour.

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3) Stress testing

Under stress testing, various activities to overload the existing resources with excess jobs are carried out in an attempt to break the system down. Negative testing, which includes removal of the components from the system is also done as a part of stress testing. Also known as fatigue testing, this testing should capture the stability of the application by testing it beyond its bandwidth capacity.

The purpose behind stress testing is to ascertain the failure of system and to monitor how the system recovers back gracefully. The challenge here is to set up a controlled environment before launching the test so that you could precisely capture the behaviour of system repeatedly, under the most unpredictable scenarios.

Stress Testing Goal:

The goal of the stress testing is to analyse post-crash reports to define the behaviour of application after failure. The biggest issue is to ensure that the system does not compromise with the security of sensitive data after the failure. In a successful stress testing, the system will come back to normality along with all its components, after even the most terrible break down.

Example:

As an example, a word processor like Writer1.1.0 by OpenOffice.org is utilized in development of letters, presentations, spread sheets etc… Purpose of our stress testing is to load it with the excess of characters.

To do this, we will repeatedly paste a line of data, till it reaches its threshold limit of handling large volume of text. As soon as the character size reaches 65,535 characters, it would simply refuse to accept more data. The result of stress testing on Writer 1.1.0 produces the result that, it does not crash under the stress and that it handle the situation gracefully, which make sure that application is working correctly even under rigorous stress conditions.

Further readingWeb Application Load, Stress and Performance Testing Using WAPT.

Have queries on Software Testing? All you need to do is post your questions in the comment section below.




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65 comments ↓

#1 Vamsi Krishna

these are confusing terminologies especially when asked in interviews :) thanks for clearing the doubts.

All these testing types are very important for application stability and scalability. In agile testing environment most testers fails to perform performance testing, rather projects from the service industry don’t give much importance for performance.

The best and easiest to learn website load testing tool I found and used is JMeter.

#2 Nirav

Excellent. Thanks

#3 Gaurav Khanna

It is very clear and easy to understand. Thanks you for posting such a nice blog.

#4 Pooja

Very informative and well explained.
well said by Vamsi these terms are always told to be like similar one but here lies the difference explained by you

#5 Ravi

Nice article…

#6 Jagdish

Can you tell me that how to perform Stress, Load and performance testing. How we test admin?

#7 Srivalli

Similarly can you explain below questions with simple explanation from interview point:

1. What is difference between Manual Testing and Automation Testing?
2. What is difference between Testing and QA?
3. How to approach for a QA/testing job?

#8 ARUNA

WELL DEFINED AND DIFFERNTIATED. GOOD WORK.

#9 PATO

Good work, these topics are always confuse us. But now it is clear. Please give brief on Unit, Integration, System, Acceptance and Regression testing. If anyone can do this I will thankful for that.

#10 Raju Phatak

Very good artical on PSR testing. Its explained with exapmple in a simple language. Kindly post some more articals on this.

#11 Reddy Siva Saran

Nice article and good explanation

#12 pravin

hi….nice article

#13 Yamraaj

Very nice article, simple explanation with easy to understand examples. Very good help for all especially for the beginners.

#14 Rajendra

Excellent Article..!!!!

#15 Jitendra Bhande

best Article …..

#16 Deepak yadav

Excellent…….

#17 sweta dubey

very good example.provide few more for better understanding and ease.

#18 karamjeet

nce gidence and good explan for software testing…….

#19 Pratap

Hi all

Can anybody tell me how to test a website in which

“iFrames” plays a very important role.

i mean few things that i must remember while testing

these kind of site ?

plz help me guys

#20 Tal

people always confuse load and stress testing. sometimes the tests could be very similar, but like you said, the goal is different…

#21 Jagadish

Sir,

Presently i ma working in non-it industry, having an experience of 5+ years in the non-it field.i am thinking shift into the software testing field.

Please guide me how can i proceed.

With regards

Jagadish

09777302953

#22 vikas

hi all!
i am searching for interview questions that are been asked to experienced candidates.i mean those who alredy have experience of 1 yr-2 yrs.
wil b thankful.

#23 sandeep redhu

thaxxxxx….its really help for us…

#24 gan

my doubt is ….. in companies separate roles will be there?
i mean performance tester?
load tester?
stress tester?
else all three are same..i have little bit confusion …. clarify anybody pls

#25 Animesh

Excellent…….
they are really usefull

#26 Animesh

Excellent

#27 Swati Namdeo

Please give me answers to these questions..
1) difference between retesting and regression testing with example?
2) what is STLC ?
3) when smoke & sanity testing is performed? please explain these with example.

#28 CONNECT

PLEASE CONTACT ME AT 08065473432, CAN HELP YOU

#29 Lizzi

Excellent

#30 kulbir

good

#31 geeta

Nice explanation and good to understand

#32 Anand Kulkarni

Very crisp, up to the point explanation.
It helps me learning Performance Testing.

#33 Hitesh

Elegant description about testing

#34 shalini dinavahi

hi friends..
i am a telecom testing proffesional,i would like to make my career in TESTING in IT domain,kindly help me how can i proceed further

Thank you
Shalini dinavahi

#35 Vishal

Thank….it really helped me to clear the difference between the two…..

#36 Trivikram

Thanks for a very informative article.

#37 Charu

How can we do performance, stress and load testing without automation tool ?

#38 agile load testing

Thanks for this bright explaination

#39 kumesh

good deffination

#40 Supriya

my doubt is ….. in companies separate roles will be there?
i mean performance tester?
load tester?
stress tester?
else all three are same..i have little bit confusion …. clarify anybody pls

#41 Ravi

Hi.. nice article..
I have a different view on the volume testing and endurance testing.
Volume testing is done with huge volume of data in the database keeping in mind, future growth in the data. Ideally we insert huge data in the database and do the testing. And Endurance testing is to test application stability for the extended time or duration. the main idea of endurance testing is to check for the memory leakage in the application. Ex: GC is happening properly without any issues..
Correct me if i m wrong.
Cheers :)

#42 Anshu

Great article but I agree to what Ravi said. Endurance testing is different from any amongst Performance, Load or Stress. Although I am still apprehensive by the definition of Volume testing given so far. Expert opinions welcomed!

#43 kaushaya

hi, i have one year experience in manual testing and that too i have tested “education system software” i want to switch to finance and banking domain,from i can get knowledge in this domain so that i can clear interviews please help me

#44 Abdul Ghaffar

Excellent differeciation bw the terms……….

#45 radheshyam

descriptin excelent,good contents,

#46 parag patil

Thanks for the Post
all the things are very nicely explained .

#47 Nimesha

It’s really clear and understanderble.. Thanks a lot for this clear explanation 😀

#48 Amit Kumar Thakur

I like this.

#49 Musab Rasheed

Thank you for every thing, specially for examples.

#50 chetan

How to test the database stress testing (i.e. how to test affect of heavy data on application). any idea or tool please share.

Thanks in advance,
chetan

#51 Frank

Wonderfully explained in a very comprehensive way. Thank you.

#52 Makesh

Nice and clear :)

#53 Rina

hi, pls tell me Manual Testing logical question answer & ISTQB exam paper.

#54 satish Namburi

Hi Every one,

Am New to Performance Testing,
Am Working with VS2012 Ultimate Version.

I Have some doubts regarding,
What is Scalability?
What is Stability?
What is Stress Test?

and What are the major differences between these tests.

How to perform these tests on web appplication?

Looking for a better solutions..

Thanks in advance:)

#55 madhavilatha

Hi Every one,

any one can you please give me performance(load,stress,scalability,stress) test cases for windows application?

#56 supriya

thanx….

#57 dian

can i have information about tools for performance testing when an application are access by so many users?
tell me, please. thank you

#58 Pavan

Nice article even for an experienced tester or a beginner

#59 Dhanish

Useful

#60 peter

Great

#61 Satham

It is very useful to me , thank you…..

#62 Pierre

Hi Vijay,

Great article – thanks.
Who in your opinion are the 3 most respected independent 3rd party testing companies for perfomance, load and stress testing.

Cheers
Pierre

#63 Mohit

Very nicely and clearly described. Well orientation as these are the mostly asked questions, confusing and similar terms.
Examples are too self explanatory.

Thanks.

#64 krish

Hi sir,

you are articles are very nice and helpful for freshers and experience persons. i am from non it background i wnat to do performance testing.Can any one please reply me what are the skills reqired for a performance tester.
Regards,
krish.

#65 Goutham

good article really very helpfull thanku so much

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