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Evaluating Load Generation in Virtualized Environments for Software Performance Testing

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7 Author(s)
Netto, M.A.S. ; Fac. of Inf., Pontifical Catholic Univ. of Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS), Rio Grande, Brazil ; Menon, S. ; Vieira, H.V. ; Costa, L.T.
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Before placing a software system into production, it is necessary to guarantee it provides users with a certain level of Quality-of-Service. Intensive performance testing is then necessary to achieve such a level and the tests require an isolated computing environment. Virtualization can therefore play an important role for saving energy costs by reducing the number of servers required to run performance tests and for allowing performance isolation when executing multiple tests in the same computing infrastructure. Load generation is an important component in performance testing as it simulates users interacting with the target application. This paper presents our experience in using a virtualized environment for load generation aimed at performance testing. We measured several performance metrics and varied system load, number of virtual machines per physical resource, and the CPU pinning schema for comparison of virtual and physical machines. The two main findings from our experiments are that physical machines produced steadier and faster response times under heavy load and that the pinning schema is an important aspect when setting up a virtualized environment for load generation.

Published in:

Parallel and Distributed Processing Workshops and Phd Forum (IPDPSW), 2011 IEEE International Symposium on

Date of Conference:

16-20 May 2011