Performance Testing, LoadRunner Tips&Tricks

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Scripts: Replay Failure – Use Full Extended Log!

Usually after recording, you would like to replay the script to ensure that it is workable. More than ever, if it is Web Application (or other application) that have a login and DB connection mechanism, it will fail.

The above can be caused by various problems that it will be difficult to list them all out in this article. But for a start, the most common for Web Applications are:

1. Session ID
2. Authentication (Basic, NTLM or Digest)
3. Certificates

When the errors happened, amateur users of LoadRunner usually do not know how to follow up.

My recommendation for newbie when such things happened is to turn on the Full Extended Log and trace the possible problem areas. The Full Extended Log provides information that you can trace what is happening to the data being sent by the client and responded from the server. In this way, you will be able to determine if the correct request (in web application context) is sent to the server and if a valid respond is been sent back from the server.

Trace carefully every request made and the response. They will return header information, actual data in text or binary, and many other more information. A good knowledge of HTTP response will be very useful when working in Web (HTTP/HTML) protocols.

My other recommendation is not too over rely on the Runtime Viewer. The main problem is that it may not support all forms of HTTP/HTML for display and thus unable to provide much assistance to you. More details of the limitations of Runtime Viewer can be found in “What are the limitations of the Run-Time Viewer” from Mercury/HP support website.

The Full Extended Log must be enabled with the following three options to be really useful:

1. Parameter substitution
2. Data returned by server
3. Advance data trace

Take note that Full Extended Log is applicable to almost all protocols and it's a useful tool to diagnose problem during script replay failure.

However, take note that Full Extended Log will generate a huge amount of log file that may be resource intensive for a big script. And when it is been ported over to a scenario execution, it will manifest to become a bigger resource/performance issue.

Therefore, prior to a scenario execution, remember to turn off the Full Extended Log unless you have a purpose for it.

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