Creating a cloud VU Schedule

If you must scale up the user load for a performance test and cannot invest in physical computers, you can create a schedule that runs on the cloud.

Before you begin

  • Depending on whether you want to run the schedule on a public cloud such as SoftLayer or a private cloud such as VMware, create a location template.
  • From the Preferences window, connect to the Cloud manager or VMware server. See Connecting to the cloud manager for SoftLayer or Connecting to the VMware server.
  • Ensure that you have an IBM ID.
  • Ensure that you have a promotional code or a subscription ID. See About Promotional code and Subscription ID.
  • To run a Web UI test on the cloud, install both HCL OneTest™ Performance and HCL OneTest UI in the same package group and add the Web UI test to the local schedule.

About this task

The cost of running a cloud schedule is based on the number of virtual tester hours that the schedule runs. So, consider creating a local schedule and run it with the default 5 users to fix any errors before scaling up the load to run on the cloud.

When you run a schedule in SoftLayer, the location of the data center and the type of host used for agent virtual machines affects the measurement of response time. For example, if you run the schedule on agent virtual machines that use shared hypervisors, other guest operating systems would also be consuming hardware resources. This action might affect the measurement of response time.

Similarly, in a VMware setup, the host machine that has virtual machines provisioned for HCL OneTest Performance might contain other virtual machines that use same set of resources. This scenario might also affect the measurement of response time.

To verify the response time accuracy of the schedule, run a very few number of virtual users on a control agent that is at another location. After the run, you can compare reports to verify the response time accuracy. If the results are comparable, perhaps within 10% of each other, you can be fairly confident that the response times reported by the load agents are accurate.

If you do not have a physical hardware to use the control agent approach, you can use the Run a Fixed Delay Measurement Audit on every location option. With this approach, you add one virtual tester on an agent to execute a delay action of perhaps 800 milliseconds. After the schedule run completes, you can measure the length of the schedule run with the applied delay to ensure response time accuracy. If the delay time is more than 1 second, you probably cannot rely on the response times being accurate from the virtual testers applying load on that agent.

Procedure

  1. In the Test Navigator view, right-click a local schedule and click Scale Schedule.
  2. By default, the Scale up to field displays the number of virtual users that is specified in the local schedule. Specify a higher value to extend the user load.
  3. To retain the locations that are specified in the local schedule, clear the Remove existing fixed locations check box. To run the cloud schedule on both local and cloud locations, select the check box. The Remove existing dynamic locations check box is enabled only when you launch the Scale Schedule wizard from an already created cloud schedule.
    Note: Do not use Run this group on the local computer in the cloud schedule editor.
  4. Specify the location of agents that are in the cloud:
    1. In Add dynamic locations, click the Add row icon Add row and click Add New or Add Existing.
    2. If you clicked Add New, specify a name for the new location template and click Finish. If you clicked Add Existing, select a location template and click OK. You can add multiple location templates for a schedule.
    3. In the Numbers to Add column, add the number of agents for each location template and click Next.
  5. To create a dummy test that applies a fixed duration delay to the run for response time accuracy, select the Run a Fixed Delay Measurement Audit on every location check box.
    1. To apply load for the dummy user group, specify the number of users.
    2. To check the accuracy of response time at regular interval, specify the number of times the test should iterate at regular intervals. For example, iterate 4 times every minute..
  6. To run certain number of users on a control agent (to ensure response time accuracy), select the Apply portion of load with a Control Agent check box.
    1. Specify the number of users to run on a control agent.
    2. Specify the location to run the control agent and click Next.
  7. To distribute and apply user load, select the Generate Stages check box.
    1. To add the existing stages available in the local schedule to the cloud schedule, select the Append to existing stages check box.
    2. Specify the parameters such as number of users to apply load initially in the first stage, number of stages, number of users to increment at every stage, run duration of each stage, time delay to apply for each user change, and time delay to apply when target number of users is reached. To add more stages, click Additional stages and specify the parameters again and click Next.
  8. Specify Cloud conversion options and click Finish. A cloud schedule is created.
    1. In Base name, specify a prefix to the cloud schedule name.
    2. To store the cloud locations in a different project, specify the path in Save generated locations in. By default, the cloud locations are saved in the current project.
    3. To preserve the cloud locations from being overwritten, select the Whose CLOUD_ROLE property contains check box and specify the property value. The CLOUD_ROLE property is available in the cloud location assets in the project.
    4. To prevent user groups that are specified to run on local agents to be run on cloud agents, in the Whose name contain field, specify the name of the user groups. To run a fixed number of virtual users on those user groups, select With fixed virtual user counts.
    5. If the local schedule has user groups with an absolute number of users set, when scaling that schedule to run in the cloud environment, to resize the number of users among user groups in a proportional manner according the number of locations, select the Adjust fixed virtual user counts proportional to the change in the number of locations check box.

Results

The location template and number of agents that you created as part of Scale Schedule wizard are displayed in the Test Navigator view. If you used the Run a Fixed Delay Measurement Audit on every location or Apply portion of load with a Control Agent options, new user groups are displayed in the cloud schedule editor.

What to do next

You can now run the cloud schedule. See Running a cloud VU Schedule.
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