sss ssss rrrrrrrrrrr ssss ss rrrr rrrr sssss s rrrr rrrr ssssss rrrr rrrr ssssssss rrrr rrrr ssssss rrrrrrrrr s ssssss rrrr rrrr ss sssss rrrr rrrr sss sssss rrrr rrrr s sssssss rrrrr rrrrr +===================================================+ +======= Quality Techniques Newsletter =======+ +======= February 2005 =======+ +===================================================+ QUALITY TECHNIQUES NEWSLETTER (QTN) is E-mailed monthly to subscribers worldwide to support the Software Research, Inc. (SR), eValid, and TestWorks user communities and to other interested parties to provide information of general use to the worldwide internet and software quality and testing community. Permission to copy and/or re-distribute is granted, and secondary circulation is encouraged, provided that the entire QTN document/file is kept intact and this complete copyright notice appears in all copies. Information on how to subscribe or unsubscribe is at the end of this issue. (c) Copyright 2004 by Software Research, Inc. ======================================================================== Contents of This Issue o Real vs. Synthetic Web Performance Measurements: A Comparative Study, by John Bartlett & Peter Sevcik o SQRL Reports Available o International Journal of Information Technology and Web Engineering o DETester Portal Website o eValid: Latest News and Updates o ROI Dashboard Offered o Mini-Survey on Test Training, by Franco Martinig o QTN Article Submittal, Subscription Information ======================================================================== Real vs. Synthetic Web Performance Measurements, A Comparative Study by John Bartlett & Peter Sevcik Summary: This new study finds that synthetic Web performance tests give organizations a false sense of user experience. Specifically, synthetic measurements frequently understate actual response time seen by real users by as much as 50% and overstate the response time of other applications by as much as 350%. Executive Summary With respect to accuracy, our analysis shows that synthetic measurements randomly and frequently understate the actual response time seen by real users by as much as 50% and overstate the response time of other applications by as much as 350%. These error margins are much too broad to serve as the basis for infrastructure management or SLA enforcement. When comparing the results of real versus synthetic measurements over time, we also found poor correlation of response time trends. Establishing accurate baselines is an essential first step in proactive detection of service level degradation or traffic anomalies. With respect to coverage, our analysis shows that synthetic agents usually interact with less than 10% of total website URLs and less than 15% of the ISPs connecting real users to the site. It is dangerous to extrapolate the performance characteristics of an entire application environment and its user communities from this small sample. In one site analyzed, we found that 190 synthetic agents were used to represent 1.7 million total website visitors. The principle risk of using synthetic measurement for service level management is that service problems can impact an unknown quantity of users in unknown locations with an immediate and negative impact on the business. This can leave the IT organization without the data they need to detect and analyze service problems so they can take the necessary corrective actions to restore service. Permission Statement You may excerpt small parts of this report as long as you add the following citation: Source: NetForecast Report 5077: http://www.netforecast.com ======================================================================== SQRL Report No. 26 Inspection of Software with Incomplete Description By: Michael Sharygin http://www.cas.mcmaster.ca/sqrl/sqrl_reports.html Abstract: Software quality problem has become increasingly visible, as software has emerged as the dominant factor in determining system costs. Software inspection, or static analysis of software artifacts, is commonly recognized as an efficient way of finding defects. Unfortunately, in software inspection we often face the problem of non-existent, unsatisfactory or inconsistent software documentation. This thesis investigates existing inspection methods and derives a generic inspection process for assuring quality, evaluating and specifying post-release software product with incomplete undergoing description. The inspection strategy refers to a set of scenarios and to the associated comparison scheme to be used for diagnosing software defects. To be rigorous and systematic, the process of inspecting software with incomplete description needs an evolvable base of software artifacts analysis in order to avoid desperate understanding of the software system under study. To realize this, a generic process within the framework suggested employs a lifecycle-centric approach to software inspection. To facilitate the process, we propose a stepwise abstraction system recovery while engineering the system in reverse. We will also introduce an experiment investigating the development of a rigorous approach for effective software inspection. SQRL Report No. 25 Use of Tabular Expressions in the Inspection of Concurrent Programs By: Xiao-Hui Jin http://www.cas.mcmaster.ca/sqrl/sqrl_reports.html Abstract: This thesis presents a systematic, rigorous inspection approach for concurrent programs. The approach has been successfully applied to a classic concurrent program of the Readers/Writers problem. In the inspection process, we rewrite the concurrent program by assigning each primitive statement a label; the transfer of control from statement to statement is made explicit. Auxiliary variables are used to record extra information for inspection without affecting the original intent of the program. The resulting program is a non-deterministic sequential program with the same behavioral effect as the original concurrent program. The rewritten program is then examined through checking the truth-value of the system invariant that fully captures program structure. A decreasing quantity of the program states is also used to show the clean completion of the program. We use tabular expressions, program-function tables, to describe the function of the program. Each column in the table is inspected individually; the program is divided into small components to be conquered with ease. The correctness of the whole program is implied (evaluated) by the correctness of the columns examined through the inspection. ======================================================================== International Journal of Information Technology and Web Engineering (http://www.idea-group.com/ijitwe) Inaugural Issue: January 2006 Submission Deadline April 10, 2005 Editor-in-Chief: David C. Rine Professor of Computer Science George Mason University DavidCRine@aol.com Co-Editor-in-Chief: Ghazi I. Alkhatib Senior Lecturer of MIS Qatar College of Technology alkhatib.JITWENG@qu.edu.qa An official publication of the Information Resources Management Association Published: Quarterly (Print ISSN: 1554-1045 and Electronic E-ISSN: 1554-1053) Organizations are continuously overwhelmed by a variety of new information technologies, many are Web based. These new technologies are capitalizing on the widespread use of network and communication technologies for seamless integration of various issues in information and knowledge sharing within and among organizations. This emphasis on integrated approaches is unique to this journal and dictates cross platform and multidisciplinary strategy to research and practice. The Mission of the Journal The main objective of the journal is to publish refereed papers in the area covering Information Technology (IT) concepts, tools, methodologies, and ethnography, in the contexts of global communication systems and Web engineered applications. In accordance with this emphasis on the Web and communication systems, the journal publishes papers on IT research and practice that support seamless end-to-end information and knowledge flow among individuals, teams, and organizations. This end-to-end strategy for research and practice requires emphasis on integrated research among the various steps involved in data/knowledge (structured and unstructured) capture (manual or automated), classification and clustering, storage, analysis, synthesis, dissemination, display, consumption, and feedback. The secondary objective is to assist in the evolving and maturing of IT-dependent organizations, as well as individuals, in information and knowledge based culture and commerce, including e-commerce. Coverage Topics to be included are the following. Please refer to the web site for more detailed list of topics. * Web systems architectures, including distributed, grid computer, and communication systems processing * Web systems design and performance engineering studies * Web user interfaces design, development, and usability engineering studies * RFID research and applications in web engineered systems * Mobile, location-aware, and ubiquitous computing * Ontology and semantic Web studies * Software agent-based for web-engineered applications * Integrated user profile, provisioning, and context-based processing * Security, integrity, privacy and policy issues * Case studies validating Web-based IT solutions * Data and knowledge capture, quality, validation, and verification issues * IT readiness and technology transfer studies * IT Education and Training * Virtual teams and virtual enterprises: communication, policies, operation, creativity, and innovation In addition to complete research articles, the journal will publish book reviews and research notes on current innovative, substantial and novel concepts and research areas to foster collaboration research and encourage further exploration and exploitation by academicians and practitioners. Both research and instructional case studies of success stories of IT-augmented systems development will be solicited form practitioner of business and government organizations. Publisher The International Journal of Information Technology and Web Engineering will be published by Idea Group Inc.
, publisher of "Idea Group Publishing", "Information Science Publishing", "IRM Press", "Cybertech Publishing", and "Idea Group Reference" imprints. The inaugural issue of this journal is due for publication in January 2006. ======================================================================== DCTester Portal Website by Jeff Rashka http://www.effectivesoftwaretesting.com/ The DCTester Portal website has been updated to reflect events in the area for 2005. Check out the seminars, tutorials and conferences. Also note that new jobs are posted on the website each week. Of special note, visit the site to learn about the free seminar on 23 February that addresses practices for testing across the entire development life cycle for effectively validating application functionality and performance. The approach applies a business context to the test management effort, where critical success and high-risk functions are prioritized. Also, obtain a free white paper, associated with the approach addressed in the seminar, to learn how you can implement a risk- based test approach that will enable you to build higher quality applications while meeting deadlines. Visit the site below today to read "Implementing a Risk-based Approach to Ensuring Quality". Discover the benefits of risk-based testing and what you can do to accurately identify and prioritize testing, while controlling costs and resources. Free white paper: http://www.compuware.com/media.asp?cid ======================================================================== eValid: Latest News & Updates eValid is the premier WebSite Quality Testing & Analysis Suite. eValid solutions help organizations maintain e-Business presence, improve WebSite quality and performance, reduce down time, prevent customer loss, and control costs. eValid's Web Analysis and Testing Suite is comprehensive, yet scalable and easy to use, and applies to a wide range of web applications. Built entirely inside an IE-compatible full-featured browser, 100% realistic user experience results are guaranteed. New Variable/Value Manipulation Commands ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ The latest revisions of eValid V5 include new features for: * A new capability to provide a context to a script at playback time, via a new "EnvironmentVariableFile" command. For details on how this command operates, see: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Technical/environment.variables.html * A new selectable option for site analysis, including a Browse... file selection option, to permit you to choose where to store you site analysis filter reports. Assuming you have enough machine capacity you now can run launch multiple simultaneous eValid site analysis scans. * Expansion of the currently available set of Reserved Variables that allow you to instantiate important fixed local values into an eValid test script at playback time. See this description for details of how this works: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Technical/reserved.variables.html CeBit Show Details ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ eValid will be represented at the upcoming CeBit show in Hannover, Germany, 10-16 March 2005. If you are planning on being at CeBit please visit: Business Consulting Saxony (BCS) http://www.sw-products.de/evalid_eng.htm You'll find BCS people at CeBit Hall 4, Booth F-064. German-speaking readers are invited to review the German Language Brochure (PDF): http://www.soft.com/eValid/Alliances/Germany/eValidFlyer.pdf And, don't forget to check the German language White Paper, "Qualitat von WebPrasenzen -- Eine Herausforderung." You can read this entire paper in PDF format at: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Alliances/Germany/WP.WebSiteQualityChallenge.pdf New Log Filtering Option Support Monitoring ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^i^^^^ The latest builds of the eValid website test engine include two capabilities that will be of interest to users who are using eValid in monitoring mode. There are two changes now available: * Selectable options via a new Message Log Filter that will let you select which messages are put in the Message Log. For details see: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Settings/project.log.filters.html * A capability to create a Custom Log as a subset of the Event Log, based on a set of string matches that are user specified. For details see: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Settings/project.log.filters.html HTTP Error Reporting ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ A new capability for monitoring HTTP errors has been added to the eValid playback engine. Users can select to have HTTP errors reported as WARNINGs or ERRORs. In addition, detailed timing logs generated by eValid now include the specific byte size and download time of each page component separately. For complete details see: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Settings/project.log.filters.html New Data Import Capability ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ A new eValid capability now simplifies importing data from CallScript, GoScript, and _eValid commands, and with the -DATA command line switch. The new Value Extraction< feature gives eValid users a simple way to import complex settings for use in processing complex parametric scripts. For complete usage information please see: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Generate/value.extract.html New 3D-SiteMap Capabilities, Options ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ The 3D-SiteMap portrays page-to-page dependency information that the eValid site analysis process obtains by systematically scanning a WebSite and then analyzing the dependencies between all of the pages it viewed. A new release of the eValid 3D-SiteMap display engine is now available. The new additions to the 3D-SiteMap engine include: o A capability to limit the displayed dependencies to an adjustable depth for children and/or parents of a chosen root node. o An option to show only the "immediate family" of a chosen root (base) URL. This lets you see only the key parts of any 3D- SiteMap. You can see a complete working example along with the updated 3D- SiteMap Summary Documentation at this page: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Mapping/3Dsitemap.html Enhanced Adaptive Playback for ButtonClick Command ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^i^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Changes in the adaptive playback support have been made for eValid's ButtonClick command. The new implementation provides for increased flexibility in how eValid adapts to a changed button name or changed button location. With this change fewer tests will fail for inconsequential changes in the underlying website. The improved method is available to regular eValid users as part of their regular maintenance subscription. Command Line Switches and Error Codes Expanded ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ To support expanded use of eValid in monitoring applications and other unattended operational roles, we have added a number of new exit codes. The complete Playback Error Codes documentation gives all of the details. See this page for details: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Technical/error.codes.html Of special note is the addition of error/exit codes for the new eV.Manager batch-mode to automatically repeat application of an test suite a fixed number of times in immediate succession. See the eV.Manager Command Line Switches description at: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Documentation.5/Technical/interface.html#eV.Manager Product Download Location, Details ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Here is the URL for downloading eValid if you want to start [or re- start] your evaluation: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Products/Download.5/down.evalid.5.phtml?status=FORM Contact Us With Your Questions ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ We welcome your questions about eValid and its applications. We promise a response to every question in ONE BUSINESS DAY if you use the WebSite request form: http://www.soft.com/eValid/Information/info.request.html ======================================================================== ROI Dashboard Offered Finding accurate and reliable benefit data from software technical and management improvements can be a hit or miss proposition. The Data & Analysis Center for Software (DACS) and its newly launched web-based ROI Dashboard at: http://r.vresp.com/?TheDataandAnalysisCe/5d905f23d1/283909/254d27cbd2/79227cd DACS is offering a new solution where the software community can find benefit data from software technical and management improvements. The ROI Dashboard augments and updates the DACS Report "A Business Case for Software Process Improvement" http://r.vresp.com/?TheDataandAnalysisCe/70891d5a0c/283909/254d27cbd2/79227cd with the latest published data on benefits. The ROI Dashboard graphically displays open and publicly available data and provides standard statistical analysis of the data. The data used in the ROI Dashboard was collected from open literature: * Articles in Communications of the ACM, CrossTalk, the IBM Systems Journal, IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, Computer, Software, the Journal of Systems and Software, Software Practice and Experience, and Software Process Improvement and Practice. * Papers presented at conferences, such as conferences sponsored by the Software Engineering Institute and Software Engineering Process Group (SEPG) conferences. * Data taken from technical reports. * Data collected by the DACS through surveys The DACS ROI Dashboard) provides the user with capabilities to examine the empirical distribution of the impact of software technology improvements on the following variables: -Quality -ROI -Productivity The processes/methodologies covered include: -SEI CMM/CMMI -SEI Team Software Process (TSP) -SEI Personal Software Process (PSP) -Inspections -Reuse -Cleanroom ======================================================================== Mini-Survey on Test Training by Franco Martinig Martinig & Associates Editor of the Methods and Tools Newsletter www.methodsandtools.com Our last poll question was: How many weeks of training on software testing have you completed in your professional life? --------------------------- ----- None 43% Less than one week 19% One week (5 days) 7% One to two weeks 7% Two weeks to one month 6% More than one month 18% --------------------------- ----- Number of participants: 240 --------------------------- ----- As you can see, a large majority of the participants received none or few testing related training from their employers. I think that this situation is typical of the importance given to the testing phase in many software development projects. The time is often limited and there are few processes, tools and infrastructure available to optimise the efforts of the developers. The lack of training is just another factor that limits the efficiency of testing efforts. At the other end of the spectrum, you see an important percentage with more than one month of training. This result should be connected with the activity of M&T readers. Around 20% of them are working in the software quality area and people working in this area should have more testing related training than the average developer. ======================================================================== ======================================================================== ------------>>> QTN ARTICLE SUBMITTAL POLICY <<<------------ ======================================================================== QTN is E-mailed around the middle of each month to over 10,000 subscribers worldwide. To have your event listed in an upcoming issue E-mail a complete description and full details of your Call for Papers or Call for Participation at <http://www.soft.com/News/QTN-Online/subscribe.html> QTN's submittal policy is: o Submission deadlines indicated in "Calls for Papers" should provide at least a 1-month lead time from the QTN issue date. For example, submission deadlines for "Calls for Papers" in the March issue of QTN On-Line should be for April and beyond. o Length of submitted non-calendar items should not exceed 350 lines (about four pages). Longer articles are OK but may be serialized. o Length of submitted calendar items should not exceed 60 lines. o Publication of submitted items is determined by Software Research, Inc., and may be edited for style and content as necessary. DISCLAIMER: Articles and items appearing in QTN represent the opinions of their authors or submitters; QTN disclaims any responsibility for their content. TRADEMARKS: eValid, HealthCheck, eValidation, InBrowser TestWorks, STW, STW/Regression, STW/Coverage, STW/Advisor, TCAT, and the SR, eValid, and TestWorks logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Software Research, Inc. 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