Apica Knowledge Base

Menu and Navigation Overview

The ZebraTester menu structure is somewhat different from other applications. Menu options are always context-sensitive; that is, only options relevant to the current operation are displayed. Also, there is no "main menu" or "main application window" (even though one of the menus has the title "Main Menu").

Overview

There are, however, four essential menus:

1. The Main Menu 

Enables recording of web surfing sessions with any Web browser and the editing of web surfing sessions and applying functional enhancements.

2. Generate Script

This sub-menu Generate Script menu converts a recorded Web surfing session into a ready-to-run load test program.

3. The Project Navigator

The Project Navigator allows storing web surfing sessions and load test programs. Furthermore, load test programs can be started from this menu, and the corresponding test results and measurements are also available from this menu.

4. Analyze Test Results

The Analyze Test Results menu allows the analysis of load test results and measurements, including comparisons of different load test runs.

Of the four main menus described above, only the Project Navigator deals with permanent data; that is, data persisted to disk. The other menus, and most other menus, work only with transient data stored in memory.

The other ZebraTester menus, shown in the Overview figure above, are described below. Their associated menu icons are:

Page Scanner

Allows the automatic scanning of entire Web sites, including all Web pages contained therein - similar to a Web Spider or a Web Crawler. The scan result can be converted directly into a Web-surfing session, out of which a ready-to-run load test program can be created. This is a fast and convenient alternative instead of recording web surfing sessions manually using the "Main Menu." However, this option is suitable only for testing relatively simple Web sites. In general, real-world Web applications can only be tested using manually recorded Web browser sessions via the "Main Menu."

Var Finder [Third Row]

Provides a convenient overview of all CGI and HTML form parameters passed between client and server in a complete Web surfing session. Using this menu, dynamic session parameters such as the .NET ViewState parameter can be managed with a single mouse-click.

URL Details / Var Handler

To get to this dialog, hover over a URL and click in

"URL Details" displays all recorded details about a URL. The "Var Handler" allows "Input Files" to be defined with URL parameter allocations, useful in situations such as logging-in to Web applications using different user accounts. The "Var Handler" also allows many additional load test program options to be dynamically changed, for example, changing the name of the stressed Web server.

Response Verification Alter(nate) View

 

In addition to checking only status HTTP codes during a load test, ZebraTester also checks the received content of URL calls by an automatically applied heuristic algorithm designed to exclude "false positive" results.

This “Alternate View” Menu allows for modifying the Response Verification algorithm.

In this Alternate Response Verification View, there will be a new Response Verification Column. Next to each URL, there will be a magnifying glass icon and the URL's verification parameters. Clicking on this icon will open up the HTTP Response Verification & Failure Action dialog, where you can change the parameters of a successful HTTP response.

Session Cutter

Allows one or more recorded web surfing sessions to be combined into a single new Web-surfing session, using a process analogous to the motion picture film's splicing. Additionally, this menu allows importing web surfing sessions from external definition files, from which load test programs can be created.

Execute Load Test in Project Navigator Dialog

Displays the most important statistics during the execution of a load test. Errors can be displayed and analyzed in real-time as they occur.

Load Curve Diagrams

Displays the Web server's performance curve or Web application under load, showing how response time, throughput, and stability behave under various load conditions. A Web server or Web application's maximum performance capacity can be determined using this menu.

Comparison Diagrams

Provides a graphical comparison of the same load test program's response times, which was executed at different times; for example, before and after server tuning activities, allowing the effect of the tuning on response times to be determined.

Detail Statistics & Diagrams

Displays in detail all collected measurements related to a single load test. Over 21 different statistics and diagrams are available.

Error Details

Shows the details of all errors occurring during a load test (error snapshots). This menu can be invoked during the load test and after the completion of a load test.

Please note that the above list of menus is not exhaustive. There are many other menus available; for example, menus to export data, generate PDF reports, control search-delete- or filter-functionality, and perform the ZebraTester product's configuration. There are also menus to enable and control the execution of load test programs on remote computer systems, including the combination of load test execution systems configured in a cluster.

These menus are all described in this User Guide.

All menus provide context-specific help text, available using the Help Icon. Example:

 

 

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