Retail. Sell personal electronics, home electronics, furniture, appliances. Large service/repair department. 2700 employees, 14 stores, 1 service center, 2 distribution centers. Annual revenues are over 400 million $US.
All facets of the business involve interaction with an Oracle database and a set of in-house developed applications. The applications are character based, Oracle Forms6i. We have over 850 different Forms files. We are in the process of rewriting the Forms applications into Forms10g GUI. We need to learn about the resource requirements of Oracle Application Server, as it applies to running Forms10g, on a large scale. Our cutover, from Forms6i, to Forms10g, will happen in one night. We have no experience with Forms10g, yet we need to properly configure and scale our system for a mass migration. Since the applications were written in-house, we have no benchmarks to work from.
Protocols tested: Oracle Forms
We are unable to produce a significant load on Forms10g, yet we need to properly configure our system for a mass migration to Forms10g. At the least, a load testing tool would provide a method to learn about options for scaling and configuring Oracle Application Server.
NeoLoad was chosen for its price, usability.
The load testing campaign:
- Phase 1: Learn how to use the tool. Learn how to build test scenarios. Learn how to recognize error conditions. Learn how to measure the results of any one test. When dealing with Oracle Forms, this is not a trivial task. Phase 1 is absolutely critical for making successful use of NeoLoad.
- Phase 2: Learn about the configurable resources of Oracle Application Server. Explore symptoms of OAS resource shortages. Become fluent in OAS architecture, OAS metering, OAS monitoring, reading OAS log files and troubleshooting.
- Phase 3: Develop scenarios that reflect actual user activity on specific business processes.
- Phase 4: Determine scalability of our system. Determine processing limits of our system. Determine proper configuration of OAS resources. Determine whether or not we need to buy more hardware and/or modify any Forms10g programming techniques. Develop confidence that we will have a successful mass migration, from Forms6i CHARACTER, to OAS/Forms10g.
Test Results and Added Value
NeoLoad has been invaluable for learning about OAS and Forms10g runtime. Without NeoLoad, we would have had a miserable migration. Many out-of-the-box defaults, of OAS, would have been inadequate for our system. Solving those problems, in a production environment, would be time consuming and extremely stressful.