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Sven Hammar

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Top Stories by Sven Hammar

Could you imagine NASA sending a rocket into space without testing it first? What about a racing team putting a brand new car on the track without taking it for a few laps to test the handling and stability? It seems to me that testing is inherent in every technical field — except for website development that is. Too often we see websites where it’s clear that design was the main priority, while testing the site’s functionality and user experience was just an afterthought. What you’re left with is a great looking website that feels like it is being sent over the Internet via carrier pigeon. And that’s going to send your customers to another site, and fast. So let’s look at the three biggest performance mistakes many developers make when they create a website and some simple ways to fix them. Identify your audience. When developing a website, many organizations fail ... (more)

2013: The Year of Application Optimization for the Device-Driven Internet

For the past few years, our friends at VMblog.com have run an annual prediction series forecasting the trends most likely to drive adoption of cloud and virtualization technologies in the upcoming year. This is the second year in a row that they’ve invited me to contribute, and I thought long and hard about the assignment. After a deep gaze into my crystal ball, a deliberate shuffle of the tarot cards, and much careful contemplation, I settled on six major predictions, six changes to how solution providers and organizations will approach performance management in 2013. Some of t... (more)

Load Testing to Detect Advanced Persistent Threats

I’ve written before about how capacity planning and load testing tools can help companies prepare for a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, but we’ve begun to see a new class of attacks emerge, called Advanced Persistent Threats (APT), whose aim is much more sinister than a slow response time or “page not found” error. What is an Advanced Persistent Threat? The intentions behind APT are all about espionage — not just state-sponsored espionage but also extensive and well-organized industrial espionage. APT is not about any particular technology or technique. The actual a... (more)

Load testing like a developer

Creating highly targeted load tests for your web server doesn’t have to be complicated. And it won’t be, at least not if you know what to look for. The secret is to approach a load test with the mind of a developer. You’re not going to run a test just to punish your web server. You’re trying to gather valuable data that will aid you in keeping your web applications fast and responsive. To do this, let’s look at two simple steps to create a scientifically sound load test. 1. To plan your test, think like a user. The first step is to outline exactly what type of web experience you’re... (more)

We broke our own load testing record – yet again!

At the end of 2012, Apica conducted a massive load test for an election campaign organization. It was the largest load test we ever conducted, surpassing the two million virtual user mark we set earlier that year. The load test clocked in at over 200,000 requests per second for an entire hour. To put this in context, roughly 23,000 Google searches occurred every second at the time. At the end of 2013, we blew our own record out of the water. After being contracted to conduct a load test for a well known government, we reached over 620,000 requests per second with over 1 million ... (more)