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LoadRunner Frequently Asked Questions

Maintained by Mark McWhinney, msm@powertest.com


Version 1.0
April 24, 2003

LoadRunner Discussion Group.......................................................................................................... ..........1


What is the purpose of this group?..................................................................................................... ......1
What types of messages are allowed?............................................................................................. ........1
Is the discussion moderated?............................................................................................................... ....1
Learning LoadRunner................................................................................................................ ..................1
How can I learn to use LoadRunner?.......................................................................................... .............1
What do I need to know to do load testing in addition to knowing how to use the LoadRunner tool?.......2
Where can I get help?........................................................................................................... ...................2
Applications....................................................................................................................... ..........................2
What protocols does LoadRunner support?.............................................................................. ...............2
What can I monitor with LoadRunner?.................................................................................. ...................3
How many users can I emulate with LoadRunner on a PC?................................................ ....................4
How much memory is needed per user?.......................................................................................... ........4
Product................................................................................................................................ ........................4
Can I get a evaluation copy of LoadRunner?...................................................................... .....................4
What is the current shipping version of LoadRunner?....................................................................... .......4
What is the difference between LoadRunner and Astra LoadTest?............................................. .............4
What is the relation between LoadRunner and Topaz?............................................................. ...............4
How much does LoadRunner cost?.................................................................................. .......................4
Where can I buy LoadRunner?..................................................................................... ...........................4

LoadRunner Discussion Group Is the discussion moderated?


Sort of. Anyone can join the discussion group
What is the purpose of this group? without approval and can post a message
Discussion of issues related to Mercury Interact- without review. However, the moderator may re-
ive's LoadRunner load testing tool. move messages or ban members without notice
if there are abuses.
What types of messages are allowed?
Any question or constructive comment about
technical issues related to LoadRunner or per- Learning LoadRunner
formance management in general is good. Job How can I learn to use LoadRunner?
postings for positions primarily involving the use Mercury Interactive offers courses at their facility
of LoadRunner are OK. Messages should be in in Sunnyvale and other US cities. They also can
English. conduct courses at your site. Mercury has certi-
fied training partners that also offer classroom
Messages about issues unrelated to LoadRun- training.
ner, postings for unrelated jobs, and personal at-
tacks are not OK. Requests for license keys or Some community colleges and for-profit training
answers for the CPS exam are not allowed and companies offer LoadRunner courses as well.
are reported to Mercury, so please do not ask.
The hardcopy and PDF documentation that is
"How-to" questions related to information that shipped with LoadRunner is fairly good. You
can be easily found by reading the LoadRunner
documentation are discouraged.

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can learn the tool and something about load portant information about customer support. Use
testing by reading the documentation, but it is the site to submit support service requests on-
best to take at least an introductory class first. line, and to access knowledge base articles,
Mercury does not send documentation to non- user discussion forums, patches, on-line docu-
customers. mentation and the latest product information.
This is available to only customers.
What do I need to know to do load testing in
addition to knowing how to use the Load- Mercury Interactive Web Site. Visit Mercury In-
Runner tool? teractive at (http://www.mercuryinteractive.com)
Unlike functional testing you need to know more for information on new products, events, a list of
than just how the application under test func- local distributors, and more. This is available to
tions. You need to know how the components the public.
behind the client work and what the performance
issues for the components are. Mercury Interactive Phone Support. You can get
phone support between 6 AM and 5 PM Pacific
Specifically, you need to know the following Time at (877) TEST-HLP or locally at (408) 822-
knowledge and skills: 5400. This is available to only customers.

Components such as web servers, application Applications


servers, database servers, operating systems,
networks and network elements such as load What protocols does LoadRunner support?
balancers. You need not have "guru" level LoadRunner ships with support for the following
knowledge of each of the components but protocols. Other protocols are available but are
should have operational knowledge and an un- not necessarily full supported.
derstanding of the performance issues associ-
E-Business
ated with the components. For example, a load
FTP
tester should know what multi-way joins, indexes LDAP
and spin counts are and what affect they have Web/Winsocket Dual Protocol
on a database server. Palm
SOAP
Protocol(s) used between the client and server Web (HTTP/HTML)
such as HTTP/HTML, ODBC, SQL*NET, and Wireless
DCOM. i-mode
VoiceXML
WAP
C. The LoadRunner script language is ANSI C.
Streaming
It helps to know the C language, but the scripts Media Player (MMS)
are generated and manipulated by LoadRunner, Real
so there is usually not need to directly edit the Mailing Services
code. There is also a icon script view which Internet Messaging (IMAP)
completely hides the C code. MS Exchange (MAPI)
POP3
Communication. Load testing is not a heads SMTP
down coding exercise. You will work with many Enterprise Java Beans
Enterprise Java Beans (EJB)
parts of an organization to coordinate activities,
Rmi-Java
schedules and resources. Daily interaction with
a variety of people requires good oral and writ- Distributed Components
ten communication skills as well as good people COM/DCOM
skills. If you prefer to sit in a cube by yourself, Corba-Java
you should stay in functional testing or develop- Rmi-Java
ment. Middleware
Jacada
Where can I get help? Tuxedo 6
Tuxedo 7
Mercury Interactive Customer Support Site. Visit
ERP
Mercury Interactive's customer support site Baan
(http://support.mercuryinteractive.com) for sup- Oracle NCA
port hours, contact information, and other im- PeopleSoft - Tuxedo

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Siebel - DB2 CLI
Siebel - Oracle  Citrix MetaFrame (available only for Load-
Siebel - MSSQL Runner)
SAP
Client/Server
DB2 CLI
Network Monitors
Domain Name Resolution (DNS)
Informix  Network delay monitor - Provides a break-
MS SQL Server down of the network segments between cli-
ODBC ent and server, as well as network delays.
Oracle (2-Tier)  SNMP monitor - Provides performance data
Sybase CtLib for network devices such as bridges and
Sybase Dblib routers.
Windows Sockets
Legacy
Terminal Emulation (RTE)
Web Server Performance Monitors
Custom Web server monitors - Provide performance data
C Vuser inside the Web servers, such as active connec-
Javascript Vuser tions, hits per second, etc.
Java Vuser
VB Script Vuser  Apache
VB Vuser  Microsoft IIS
 iPlanet (NES)
What can I monitor with LoadRunner?
LoadRunner ships with support for the following Web Application Server Performance Monitors
components. Other monitors are available but Web application server monitor - Provides per-
are not necessarily full supported. formance data inside the Web application server,
such as connections per second, active data-
Client-side Monitors base connections, etc.
End-to-end transaction monitors - Provide end-
user response times, hits per second, transac-  BroadVision
tions per second.  Allaire ColdFusion
 Microsoft Active Server Pages
 Virtual User Status  SilverStream
 User-defined Data Point  BEA WebLogic (via SNMP)
 Transaction Response Time  BEA WebLogic (via JMX)
 Transaction per Second (Passed)  IBM WebSphere
 Transaction per Second (Failed)  iPlanet Application Server
 Web Transaction breakdown Graphs  Oracle 9iAS HTTP Server
 Hits per Second  Ariba
 Throughput  ATG Dynamo
 HTTP Responses per Second
 Pages Downloaded per Second Streaming Media Performance Monitors
Streaming specific monitors for measuring the
Server Monitors end user quality on the client side, and isolate
NT/UNIX/Linux monitors - Provide hardware, performance bottlenecks on the server-side.
network and operating system performance met-
rics, such as CPU, memory and network
throughput.  Microsoft Windows Media Server
 Real Networks RealServer
 NT server resources
 UNIX / Linux server monitor Firewall Server Resource Monitors

Load Appliances Performance Monitors  CheckPoint FireWall-1

 Antara.net Database Server Resource Monitors

Application Deployment Solutions

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Database monitor - Provides performance data What is the current shipping version of Load-
inside the database, such as active database Runner?
connections, etc. 7.6

 SQL Server What is the difference between LoadRunner


 Oracle and Astra LoadTest?
 DB2 Astra LoadTest is another load test tool from
 Sybase Mercury Interactive built specifically for testing
web applications. Relative to LoadRunner it:
ERP Performance Monitors  Supports only HTTP and HTTPS protocols.
 Has less functionality.
 SAP R/3 Monitor  Uses the VBScript scripting language.
 Has a larger footprint (~ 5 MBytes).
Java Performance Monitors  Costs less.
 Is easier to learn.
 TowerJ
 JProbe In that LoadRunner supports web applications
 J2EE Performance Monitor plus much more, it is the preferred tool for load
testing web applications. The exception is if the
Middleware Performance Monitors load testers are non-technical (bad idea) or the
load test project's budget is too limited to afford
 Tuxedo - Provides performance data inside LoadRunner.
a BEA Tuxedo application server, such as
current requests in queue. What is the relation between LoadRunner
 IBM WebSphere MQ (MQSeries) (available and Topaz?
only for LoadRunner) Topaz is Mercury Interactive's line of products
and hosted services for monitoring applications
In addition to these monitors, LoadRunner also after deployment to production. The Topaz
supports user defined monitors which allows you products are built with LoadRunner technology
to easily integrate the results from other meas- and use the same script recorder. Scripts built
urement tools with LoadRunner data collection. for load testing with LoadRunner can be used by
Topaz for monitoring without modification.
How many users can I emulate with Load-
Runner on a PC? How much does LoadRunner cost?
This greatly depends on the configuration of the The main cost drivers for a LoadRunner license
PC (number of CPUs, CPU speed, memory and are the number of users to be simulated and
operating system), the protocol(s) used, the size number and type of protocols used. You will
and complexity of the script(s), the frequency of need to talk a sales representative to price out
execution (iteration pacing and think times) and the various components.
the amount of logging.
The total cost of LoadRunner typically runs from
How much memory is needed per user? USD$50,000 to $100,000 or more.
You can get some approximation of the memory
needs by looking at the "LR 7.02 footprints.pdf" Maintenance cost is 18% of the total list price.
file located on the LoadRunner discussion group The maintenance includes new LoadRunner re-
at groups.yahoo.com/group/LoadRunner/files. leases, patches, phone support and access to
the support web site.
Product
Where can I buy LoadRunner?
Can I get a evaluation copy of LoadRunner? LoadRunner is sold by Mercury Interactive and
No. Mercury does not ship evaluation copies of by authorized resellers.
LoadRunner. You can contact Mercury or a Mer-
cury reseller to get a demo at your site or via
Webex.

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